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  • Photo: Tony Rotundo

    Photo: Tony Rotundo

    Men's Freestyle Olympic Team Refresher

    A few other sports such as swimming and track and field are in the process of figuring out who will represent the United States, but in wrestling the team has been set for quite some time and the last set of qualifiers are solidified as well. With our reps being set for so long, USA wrestling fans have been without some hype for a while  - obviously excluding the latest news on the Russian opponents that won’t be making the trip to Paris this year.
    But getting back to Team USA, let’s take another look at our team and some of their storylines going into the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris this summer.
    Men’s Freestyle Team
    57 kg: Spencer Lee – 1st Olympic Team
    65 kg: Zain Retherford – 1st Olympic Team
    74 kg: Kyle Dake – 2nd Olympic Team (Bronze in 2020)
    86 kg: Aaron Brooks – 1st Olympic Team
    97 kg: Kyle Snyder – 3rd Olympic Team (Gold in 2016, Silver in 2020)
    125 kg: Mason Parris – 1st Olympic Team

    The pair of Kyles are the vets on this year’s Olympic teams. Kyle Dake (74kg) and Kyle Snyder (97kg) have three Olympic medals between the two of them with Dake winning bronze in 2020 and Snyder winning gold in 2016 and silver and 2020. For Snyder, he will be looking to claim his 10th straight Senior level World or Olympic medal. Currently, the seven-time World and Olympic finalist has four gold, 3 silver and 2 bronze medals. Dake will be looking for his 6th straight Senior level medal as he has already claimed four World titles and a bronze medal in the 2020 Games.
    The other four guys on this year’s Olympic team are all first timers. Specifically, Spencer Lee (57kg) and Aaron Brooks (86kg) are on their first Senior level teams of their career. Zain Retherford (65kg) and Mason Parris (125kg) may be making their first Olympic teams, but each has some Senior level hardware in their trophy cases. Retherford has made the World finals twice and brought home a gold medal in 2023 and a silver in 2022, both at 70kg. The Parris to Paris train will be looking for his second consecutive Senior level medal after claiming bronze at last year’s world championships. Just a few weeks ago, he won the UWW ranking series event in Hungary where he mowed down the field with wins of 9-2, 10-0 and a 34-second pin in the finals.

    The long awaited Senior level debut of Spencer Lee has proved to be fruitful as he dominated the field at the trials then carried that momentum into the qualifier where he was able to qualify the weight. Lee has a long list of age level world gold medals to go along with his three NCAA National Championships, but this will be his first major tournament since winning his third straight world title in 2016 at 50kg at the U20 World Championships. And coming off the biggest win of the Trials was four-time NCAA Champion Aaron Brooks, who took out four-time World and Olympic Champion David Taylor to make this year's team. Like Lee, Brooks will be making his debut at a major tournament and he also has a few age level world medals with a U23 Gold medal joining his list of accolades last year. 

    Watch Snyder win his first World Gold medal in 2015

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