Two Stanford wrestlers on U.S. Junior World Team


After sweeping a wrestle-off in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Sunday, incoming freshman Joey McKenna joins Stanford redshirt sophomore Nathan Butler on the United States Junior World Team.

Butler and McKenna, who was a 2014 UWW Junior World silver medalist, will compete in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil, August 11-16. For the first time in program history, the Cardinal has two representatives on the U.S. Junior World Team.

McKenna defeated Brock Zacherl in two matches in the special wrestle-off for the 60 kg/132 pounds position on the 2015 U.S. UWW Junior World Team. He won the first match by a 10-0 technical fall at 4:08. The second match was more of a challenge, with McKenna coming out on top 6-4.

"I felt good out there, trying to get to my offense. I knew he was a lefty lead and just wanted my right leg," said McKenna. "I have been working a lot, keeping the leg protected. I am a lefty, which was to my advantage. I had a game plan to get to my attacks, and get on top to get a turn and try to finish the match."

McKenna, as a returning UWW Junior World medalist, was able to get an extension on his best-of-three championship series if he qualified for and entered the 2015 U.S. Senior World Team Trials in Madison, Wis., according to team selection procedures. He qualified for the Senior World Team Trials as a wildcard, and competed in the 66 kg/145.5 lbs. division.

Butler secured his spot on the UWW Junior World Team by sweeping Jake Gunning on June 12 at the Team Trials held at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison. He won both matches by 11-0 technical fall.

Cross country

The Stanford schedule has been released and one notable aspect is that the men will compete at the Wisconsin Invitational and the women at the Pre-Nationals on the same weekend.

Typically, Stanford begins with a low-key Northern California event, then opens in earnest at the Stanford Invitational, and then will go to one major national-level invitational before the postseason.

This year, the first meet (Sept. 12) will be the Fresno State Invitational at Woodward Park, the longtime home of the California state high school meet and frequent NCAA regional site. The distance is 6-kilometers for the men, in contrast to 8K during most of the season and 10K at the NCAA Regionals and Championships. The women will run 4.2K in Fresno and 6K the rest of the year.

The Stanford Invitational will be held for the 42nd consecutive year, on the Stanford Golf Course, on Sept. 26.

Oct. 16-17 is Wisconsin Invitational/Pre-Nationals weekend. Stanford's Maksim Korolev won at Wisconsin last year. The Pre-Nationals will be in Louisville, where the NCAA Championships return for the first time since 2012, at E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park. It has been mostly in Terre Haute, Indiana, in recent years.

Stanford has gone to Pre-Nats only once since 2011 and has been to Wisconsin three of the past four years. This will be the first time Stanford has had a presence in both in the same season.

The Pac-12 Championships will be in Auburn, Wash., on Oct. 30, followed by the NCAA West Regional in Seattle on Nov. 13.

Both Cardinal men's and women's teams could be top 10 teams, with the men holding even higher standards. Stanford returns five of its seven from last year's NCAA runner-up team. It was Stanford's highest national finish since 2003.


Stanford is well-represented at this summer's Young Women's Championships in Lancaster, Pa., with eight current or former players participating.

The Young Women's Championships, which is currently in progress, is a high-level tournament that helps determine the U.S. Under-21 and Junior National training camps rosters.

Representing the Cardinal are Kelsey Harbin, Millie Stefanowicz, Sarah Helgeson, Katie Keyser, Casey Deeds, Maddy Belin, Kristina Bassi and Caroline Beaudoin.

Players selected to the training camp rosters will comprise a majority of the positions on Team USA at next year's Junior Pan American Games in Trinidad and Tobago.

— Stanford Athletics

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