Photo courtesy of Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)
USA Wrestling is pleased to announce that Final X Stillwater will be held on Friday, June 3 at Gallagher-Iba Arena on the campus of Oklahoma State.
There will be two Final X events this year, with Final X New York (which serves as the Beat the Streets Gala event this year, being held at Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City, Wednesday, June 8.
Final X Stillwater will be held alongside the National Wrestling Hall of Fame Honors Weekend, which is happening at the Hall of Fame facility next door, June 3-4.
The Final X series will determine the 2022 U.S. Senior World Teams in all three of the Olympic disciplines: men's and women's freestyle and Greco-Roman.
There will be 15 weight classes contested in Final X Stillwater, five in men's freestyle, five in women's freestyle and five in Greco-Roman. Those weight classes will be announced at a later date. The top two U.S. athletes in the nation in these weight classes will compete in a best-of-three series to determine who will wrestle at the 2022 Senior World Championships in Belgrade, Serbia.
"We are excited to bring one of wrestling's premier events to one of the most historic venues in wrestling history," said Rich Bender, USA Wrestling Executive Director. "Gallagher-Iba Arena will provide a wonderful backdrop for America's best and brightest wrestlers. We are grateful to stage this event alongside one of wrestling's crown jewel properties, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame Honors Weekend. We are hopeful that wrestling fans from around the country will take advantage of the chance to see our sport's current and past stars."
"Bringing Final X to Stillwater is a great opportunity to showcase our community and Oklahoma State's tradition," said John Smith, Oklahoma State head wrestling coach and two-time Olympic champion. "Fans can watch the best wrestlers in the United States compete at the highest level right here in our back yard. There's not a better place to host an event like this than Gallagher-Iba Arena and we're excited to pair it with the Hall of Fame's Honors Weekend."
"We are excited that Final X could be held in conjunction with our annual Honors Weekend," said Lee Roy Smith, Executive Director, National Wrestling Hall of Fame. "This is a great opportunity for fans to visit the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and experience the history of our great sport while also being able to watch our nation's best wrestlers, and possible future Hall of Famers, compete to represent the United States at this year's World Wrestling Championships."
Session times for Final X Stillwater are 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. CT. Information on ticket sales will be provided shortly.
FloWrestling will be the presenting sponsor of Final X New York and will serve as its host broadcasting partner.
Gallagher-Iba Arena is the home of Oklahoma State wrestling and basketball. This fabled fieldhouse was built in 1938 and underwent a major renovation in 2001. The renovation doubled the size of the facility, now with a 13,611-seat capacity. The arena is named for fabled Oklahoma State wrestling coach Ed Gallagher and basketball coach Henry Iba. It has been the site of many of college wrestling's most historic competitions.
Although this is the first time that Gallagher-Iba Arena has hosted Final X, it is not the first time that a U.S. Senior World Team has been determined at this historic location. In 1989, the U.S. Olympic Festival's wrestling competition was held at Gallagher-Iba Arena, which served as the Senior World Team Trials event for that season. In addition, the Senior World Team Trials was held at Gallagher-Iba Arena in 2013.
Other major USA Wrestling events previously hosted in Stillwater included the U.S. Freestyle National Championships in 1970, 1971 and 1972 and the 2013 UWW Junior World Team Trials.