Kyle Snyder, Logan Stieber Named to USA Freestyle World Cup Team

By Andy Vance on March 13, 2018 at 3:07 pm
World Cup 2018



Two of Ohio State's all-time great wrestlers will represent the United States against the best wrestlers in the world as part of the 2018 U.S. Men's Freestyle World Cup Team. Logan Stieber, a 4-time NCAA champion and 2016 World Champion, and Kyle Snyder, the 2016 Olympic and two-time World Champion, will lead Team USA into its first major international competition of the year, April 7-8 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena at the University of Iowa.

The World Cup is an annual international dual-meet championship, and will feature the top eight men's freestyle wrestling teams in the world.

Team USA, featuring Stieber and Snyder, took home the silver medal from last year's World Cup, hosted and won by Iran. The pair of Buckeyes split their final matches, with Snyder winning a 6-0 victory over his Iranian counterpart, but with Stieber coming up short in the final round.

The Americans went on to win the team title at the 2017 World Wrestling Championships in Paris last August, marking the first World title for the U.S. in men's freestyle in 22 years, and only the third such title in history. The World Championship is a traditional tournament format, rather than the dual-meet format of the World Cup.

Stieber, a 2016 World champion and native of Monroeville, Ohio, will be competing in his second Freestyle World Cup. Last year in Kermanshah, he finished 3-1 in his matches at 61 kg (134 pounds).

At the 2016 World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, Stieber won the gold medal at 61 kg on his first Senior World Team. He was also a member of the 2017 U.S. World Team.

Among his many other international accolades, Stieber claimed a 2011 Junior World silver medal. He was a 2017 Grand Prix of Spain champion, and won silver medals at the 2016 Outstanding Ukrainian Memorial and the 2015 UWW Golden Grand Prix in Azerbaijan. 

Closer to home, Stieber was a four-time NCAA champion for Ohio State, winning his titles between 2012-2015. He was the 2015 Dan Hodge Trophy winner as the nation’s top college wrestler, and led the Buckeyes to the 2015 NCAA Championships team title.

He was only the 14th man in history to win four Big Ten titles. He was also a four-time Ohio high school state champion prior to wrestling for the Buckeyes.

Snyder, meanwhile, is considered the best pound-for-pound wrestler on the planet, and will wrestle for the United States at 97 kg (213 pounds). The reigning Olympic, World and NCAA champion holds a 7-1 record in his two previous World Cup appearances. He went undefeated in the 2016 Cup, and 3-1 last year in Iran.

In 2015, Snyder became the youngest U.S. World Wrestling champion in history, bringing home his first World gold at the age of 19. He would follow that up by becoming the youngest U.S. wrestler to win Olympic gold, winning the 2016 games in Rio, and then earning another World Championship last year in Paris in "The Match of the Century."

Snyder is also the first American man to win back-to-back Ivan Yarygin Grand Prix championships, and has won a host of other international tournaments and titles.

The two-time NCAA champion will compete for his third collegiate title this weekend in Cleveland. He won his third Big Ten title earlier this month in East Lansing, Mich.

The U.S. has drawn into Pool A for the 2018 World Cup, facing Japan, Georgia and defending champion Iran. Pool B includes Russia, Azerbaijan, Cuba and Kazakhstan. 

Action will get underway Saturday, April 7, at 11 a.m. between the U.S. and Japan, followed at 3:30 p.m. between the U.S. and Iran.

Sunday, the U.S. will wrestle Georgia at 11 a.m. to conclude Pool Action. Medal-round matches will commence at 1:30 p.m. for the Fifth and Seventh place matches, at 3:15 p.m. for the Bronze Medal matches, and at 5 p.m. for the Gold Medal matches.

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