Woodbury wrestling: Johnson helps Team Minnesota win two national titlesTy Johnson, who will be a freshman at Woodbury High School this fall, wrestled for Team Minnesota, which won both the 2011 USA Freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling national championships at the 2011 Schoolboy Duals, held in Indianapolis.
By: Patrick Johnson, Staff Writer, Woodbury Bulletin
Last month, Woodbury helped Minnesota win two USA Wrestling national championships.
Ty Johnson, who will be a freshman at Woodbury High School this fall, wrestled for Team Minnesota, which won both the 2011 USA Freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling national championships at the 2011 Schoolboy Duals, held in Indianapolis, Ind., from June 9-10.
Johnson has been wrestling for eight years. He said the tournament, his first national-level competition, was a lot of fun.
“It was a great experience,” Johnson said. “I learned a ton just going up against some of the best wrestlers from the whole nation. There were great wrestlers and great coaches. I’m glad I went and hope to go to the Cadet duals next year.”
The Team Minnesota “A” team went 10-0 in the Greco-Roman competition and 10-0 in the Freestyle contest to claim both national titles at the Schoolboy (ages 13-15) division.
In the Greco Roman division, Minnesota defeated Pennsylvania Blue 46-26 in the first place match. In the Freestyle division, Minnesota beat Pennsylvania Blue 37-36 in the championship game to earn a sweep of the titles. At the national tournament, the Minnesota “B” team went 5-4 in the Greco competition, going 3-4 in its pool, beating Arizona 38-26 in the consolation semifinals and New York 37-35 in the consolation finals. In the freestyle tournament, Minnesota “B” went 6-3 overall, 4-3 in its group, and beat Ohio 35-32 in the consolation semifinals and Virginia 37-29 in the consolation finals. Johnson wrestled for the Team Minnesota “B” team and compiled an 8-2 record.
“We finished in about the middle of the pack,” Johnson said. “But, we were all Team Minnesota and worked with each other to make each other better for that tournament. Team Minnesota goes down as national champions. It felt really good to know that I was selected to that team.”
In Greco-Roman, which is the original Olympic-style of wrestling, two wrestlers are scored for based on their performance in three two-minute periods, which can be ended by a pinfall at any time. The major difference between Greco-Roman and Freestyle wrestling — the other form of wrestling at the Olympics — is that Greco-Roman forbids holds below the waist. This restriction results in an emphasis on throws.
Freestyle, and collegiate wrestling, unlike Greco-Roman, allow the use of the wrestler’s or his opponent’s legs in offense and defense.
Johnson was selected to the Team Minnesota team, mostly based on his performance at the Minnesota/USA State Folkstyle Wrestling Tournament, held March 11 to 13 at Rochester Community and Technical College. At state, Johnson placed second in the Freestyle and third in the Greco competition.
Johnson also plays football, but said wrestling was his top sport. When not wrestling for Woodbury, he wrestles for the East Metro Freestyle and Greco program.
“I wrestle just about every day throughout the year,” Johnson said. “Wrestling is definitely my favorite sport.”