The National Wrestling Hall of Fame on Thursday announced the state and regional winners of the Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award (DSHSEA).
The DSHSEA recognizes and celebrates the nation’s most outstanding high school senior male wrestlers for their excellence in wrestling, scholastic achievement, citizenship, and community service. Regional winners are selected from state winners, and the national winner will be chosen from the regional winners.
The Hall of Fame will announce the state and regional winners of the Tricia Saunders High School Excellence Award (TSHSEA) next week. The TSHSEA recognizes and celebrates the nation’s most outstanding high school senior female wrestlers for their excellence in wrestling, scholastic achievement, citizenship, and community service.
The national winner of the DSHSEA will be announced on Tuesday, May 8. The national winner will be presented with his award during the 42nd Annual Honors Weekend at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame & Museum on June 1-2 in Stillwater, Oklahoma.
The DSHSEA was established in 1996 to honor Olympic and World champion Dave Schultz, whose career was cut short when he was murdered in January 1996. He was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame as a Distinguished Member in 1997 and as a member of the United World Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2016.
“Every year we are excited to announce the winners of the Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award because it allows us to showcase outstanding wrestlers who are also good students and citizens,” said Executive Director Lee Roy Smith. “It is also very rewarding for us to follow the careers of the DSHSEA winners to see the success that they have in college and beyond.”
Midwest Region winner David Carr is the son of Nate Carr, a Distinguished Member inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2003, and the brother of Nate Carr, Jr., who was the DSHSEA winner for Georgia in 2006. North Carolina winner Quincy Monday is the son of Kenny Monday, a Distinguished Member inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2001. Virginia winner Patrick McCormick is the son of Dr. Michael McCormick, who was honored by the Hall of Fame as a Meritorious Official in 2011, and the grandson of Dr. Pat McCormick, who was honored as a Meritorious Official in 1994.
The state winners are evaluated and selected on the basis of three criteria: success and standout performances and sportsmanship in wrestling; review of GPA and class rank, academic honors and distinctions; and participation in activities that demonstrate commitment to character and community.
The Hall of Fame accepts nominations for its high school excellence awards from state chapters and coaches. The nominations are reviewed by a committee, which selects state and regional winners. The committee then determines the national winners from the regional winners.
National winners of the DSHSEA award have combined to win 18 NCAA Division I individual titles led by four-time champion Logan Stieber (2010), three-time winner Zain Retherford (2013) and two-time winners Steven Mocco (2001), David Taylor (2009) and Teyon Ware (2002). The 2016 winner of the DSHSEA Mark Hall won an NCAA title as a freshman in 2017 while 2015 winner Zahid Valencia defeated Hall in the finals to win an NCAA title in 2018.
The 2018 Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award Regional Winners are:
West Region: Travis Wittlake, Jr., of Broadbent, Oregon, is a four-time Oregon High School state champion for Marshfield High School in Coos Bay, Oregon. The son of Travis Wittlake, Sr., he was the United World Wrestling cadet freestyle champion in 2016 and 2017, the Junior Nationals cadet freestyle champion in 2016 and the Junior Nationals Greco-Roman champion in 2015 and 2016. Wittlake won a bronze at the Junior World Championships in 2016, but did not compete in 2017 because of an injury. He is a four-time Sierra Nevada Classic champion and was named 4A Wrestler of the Year three times. Wittlake was featured in Sports Illustrated‘s “Faces In The Crowd” in 2018 and was listed as a ‘Future Game Changer’ by the publication in 2012. He has been a motivational speaker at local schools while also serving as a volunteer coach and official. Wittlake has a 3.4 GPA and has signed a letter of intent to wrestle for Oklahoma State University.
Central Region: Malik Heinselman of Castle Rock, Colorado, is a three-time Colorado High School state champion for Castle View High School in Castle Rock, Colorado. The son of Brian and Caroline Heinselman, he had a high school record of 174-9 with 92 pins. Heinselman was a two-time Junior Nationals champion and competed on three world freestyle teams, twice as a cadet and once as a junior. He has a 3.77 GPA and has signed a letter of intent to wrestle for Ohio State University.
Midwest Region: David Carr of Massillon, Ohio, is a four-time Ohio High School state champion for Perry Local High School and he also won a Kentucky High School state title as an eighth grader. The son of Nate and Linda Carr, he was the Outstanding Wrestler at the state tournament as a junior and as a senior and finished with a career record of 188-6. Carr was a Junior Nationals champion and was named Outstanding Wrestler in 2017, and he won a bronze medal at the World Championships in 2016. He volunteers at a homeless shelter in Dayton, Ohio, and helped produce an anti-bullying video in response to the number of suicides at his high school. He has a 3.2 GPA and has signed a letter of intent to wrestle for Iowa State University.
Northeast Region: Shane Griffith of Westwood, New Jersey, is a four-time finalist and three-time New Jersey High School state champion, finishing with a career record of 128-13 for Bergen Catholic High School. The son of Jeffrey and Alison Griffith, he is a Super 32 champion and Fargo runner-up and was the first underclassman to be named Outstanding Wrestler at the state tournament as a freshman in 2015. He is a member of Teen Impact at Bergen Catholic High School and also volunteers at a local food pantry and at the children’s hospital at Hackensack Medical Center. He has signed a letter of intent to wrestle for Stanford University.
Southeast Region: Joey Silva of Altamonte Springs, Florida, is a five-time Florida High School state champion, finishing with a career record of 267-9 for Lakeland Highland Prep. The son of Gabriel Acevedo and Joanna Pineiro, he is a four-time National High School Coaches Association champion and a three-time Super 32 champion. Silva volunteers at Shepard’s Hope while also volunteering his time to work with youth in wrestling and other sports and delivering meals to the homeless. He has a 3.28 GPA and has signed a letter of intent to wrestle for the University of Michigan.
The regions and the states that they are comprised of are:
West (11) – Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming
Midwest (10) – Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin
Central (7) – Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas
Southeast (10) – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia
Northeast (11) – Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont
2018 Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award State Winners
State – Name, High School, City, College Attending
Alabama – Barrett Blakely, Oak Mountain High School, Birmingham, Appalachian State University
Alaska – Thomas Dyment, Bethel High School, Bethel
Arizona – Roman Bravo-Young, Sunnyside High School, Tucson, Penn State University
Arkansas – James Noel, Pulaski Academy, Little Rock, North Dakota State University
California – Seth Nevills, Clovis High School, Clovis, Penn State University
Colorado – Malik Heinselman, Castle View High School, Castle Rock, Ohio State University
Connecticut – Jarod Kosman, Fitch High School, Groton
Delaware – Robbie Rosser, Milford Senior High School, Milford
Florida – Joey Silva, Lake Highland Prep, Orlando, University of Michigan
Georgia – Justin Ruffin, Union Grove High School, McDonough, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
Hawaii – Corey Cabanban, St. Louis School, Honolulu
Idaho – Joseph Rice, New Plymouth High School, New Plymouth
Illinois – Anthony Cassioppi, Hononegah High School, Rockton, University of Iowa
Indiana – Brayton Lee, Brownsburg High School, Brownsburg, University of Minnesota
Iowa – Alex Thomsen, Underwood High School, Underwood
Kansas – Jace Koelzer, Olathe South High School, Olathe, University Northern Colorado
Kentucky – Saul Ervin, Union County High School, Morganfield, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
Louisiana – Blake Mateu, Archbishop Rummel High School, Metairie
Maine – Ryan Fredette, Winslow High School, Winslow
Maryland – Aaron Brooks, North Hagerstown High School, Hagerstown
Massachusetts – Lucas Cordio, Nashoba Regional High School, Bolton, University of Maryland
Michigan – Brandon Whitman, Dundee High School, Dundee, University of North Carolina
Minnesota – Gable Steveson, Apple Valley High School, Apple Valley, University of Minnesota
Missouri – Zachery Elam, Staley High School, Kansas City, University of Missouri
Montana – Charlie Klepps. Billings Senior High School, Billings
Nebraska – Derek Robb, Sidney High School, Sidney
Nevada – Ty Smith, Virgin Valley High School, Mesquite, Drexel University
New Hampshire – Brian Lindsay, Kingswood Regional High School, Wolfeboro
New Jersey – Shane Griffith, Bergen Catholic High School, Oradell
New Mexico – Wes Rayburn, Piedra Vista High School, Farmington
New York – Jacori Teemer, Long Beach High School, Lido Beach
North Carolina – Quincy Monday, Carrboro High School, Carrboro, Princeton University
North Dakota – Jared Franek, West Fargo High School, West Fargo
Ohio – David Carr, Perry High School, Massillon, Iowa State University
Oklahoma – Jaryn Curry, Choctaw High School, Choctaw
Oregon – Travis Wittlake, Jr., Marshfield High School, Coos Bay, Oklahoma State University
Pennsylvania – Gavin Teasdale, Jefferson-Morgan High School, Jefferson
Rhode Island – Sam Lynch, Ponaganset High School, North Scituate
South Carolina – Jacob Brasseur, Lexington High School, Lexington
South Dakota – William Turman, T.F. Riggs High School, Pierre
Tennessee – Bryce Wittman, Montgomery Bell Academy, Nashville
Texas – Braeden Redlin, Allen High School, Allen, Ohio State University
Utah – Brock Hardy, Box Elder High School, Brigham City
Vermont – Tyler Burgess, Mount Anthony Union High School, Bennington
Virginia – Patrick McCormick, Poquoson High School, Poquoson, University of Virginia
Washington – Mason Phillips, Stanwood High School, Stanwood, University of North Carolina
West Virginia – Josh Humphreys, Parkersburg South High School, Parkersburg
Wisconsin – Jeremy Schoenherr, Stratford High School, Stratford, University of Wisconsin
Wyoming – Brett Brenton, Natrona County High School, Casper, University of Wyoming
All-Time National Winners of Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award
2017 – Daton Fix, Charles Page High School, Sand Springs, Oklahoma (Junior World Champion)
2016 – Mark Hall II, Apple Valley High School, Apple Valley, Minnesota (NCAA Champion, 2X Junior World Champion)
2015 – Zahid Valencia, St. John Bosco High School, Bellflower, California (NCAA Champion, Junior World Silver Medalist)
2014 – Chance Marsteller, Kennard-Dale High School, Fawn Grove, Pennsylvania
2013 – Zain Retherford, Benton Area High School, Benton, Pennsylvania (3X NCAA Champion)
2012 – Taylor Massa, St. Johns High School, St. Johns, Michigan
2011 – Morgan McIntosh, Calvary Chapel High School, Santa Ana, California
2010 – Logan Stieber, Monroeville High School, Monroeville, Ohio (4X NCAA Champion)
2009 – David Taylor, Graham High School, St. Paris, Ohio (2X NCAA Champion)
2008 – Jason Chamberlain, Springville High School, Springville, Utah
2007 – Zachary Sanders, Wabasha-Kellogg High School, Wabasha, Minnesota
2006 – David Craig, Brandon High School, Brandon, Florida
2005 – Troy Nickerson, Chenango Forks High School, Chenango Forks, New York (NCAA Champion)
2004 – Coleman Scott, Waynesburg High School, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania (NCAA Champion and Olympic bronze medalist)
2003 – C.P. Schlatter, St. Paul Graham High School, Urbana, Ohio
2002 – Teyon Ware, Edmond North High School, Edmond, Oklahoma (2X NCAA Champion)
2001 – Steven Mocco, Blair Academy, Blairstown, New Jersey (2X NCAA Champion and Olympian)
2000 – Ben Connell, Lugoff-Elgin High School, Lugoff, South Carolina
1999 – Zach Roberson, Blue Valley North West High School, Overland Park, Kansas (NCAA Champion)
1998 – Garrett Lowney, Freedom High School, Appleton, Wisconsin (2X Olympian) and Justin Ruiz, Taylorsville High School, Salt Lake City, Utah (Olympian)
1997 – Jeff Knupp, Walsh Jesuit High School, Akron, Ohio
1996 – David Kjeldgaard, Lewis Central High School, Council Bluffs, Iowa