Quakers fall short in Trials
June 16, 2011, 1:00 am · Updated June 16, 2011, 12:00 am·
Despite winning a few matches and holding their own, rising junior Micah Burak and assistant coach Matt Valenti were unable to earn a spot on the 2011 World Championship squad for Team USA.
Burak entered the tournament as the 12th seed out of 12 wrestlers in the 96 kg/211.5-pound weight class but did not let that deter him. Despite falling behind in the first period, he rallied to defeat No. 5 seed Tyler Lehman in the first round of the tournament, setting up a match with No. 4 seed Aaron Anspach in the quarterfinals.
Burak played Anspach to a draw in terms of points going 2-2, 3-3, but lost the match as Anspach took advantage of scoring last in the first period and a three-point takedown in the second, ultimately cutting Burak’s tournament run short.
Valenti, the No. 5 seed at the 60kg/132-pound weight class, received a bye into the quarterfinals where he took on No. 4 seed Drew Headlee. Though Headlee came out strong and took the first period, Valenti came back to win the match 0-1, 5-1, 2-1 to move on to the semifinals.
In the semifinals, Valenti faced No. 1 seed Shawn Bunch, a 2009 World Team member and 2010 U.S. Open champion. Valenti was able to limit Bunch to only two points in the match, but was unable to notch any his own and was eliminated 0-1, 0-1.