Maryland All-Star Team to return to the Pittsburgh Wrestling Classic

Pittsburgh, PA – A Maryland All-Star Team is returning to Pittsburgh to compete in the 46th Annual Pittsburgh Wrestling Classic on Saturday, March 14, 2020, at the University of Pittsburgh Fitzgerald Field House.

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The Wrestling Classic – known as The Rose Bowl of Wrestling” – is the most prestigious high school all-star wrestling meet in the United States because it attracts the best high school seniors in the country. The preliminary meet pits the best wrestlers from Western Pennsylvania, or WPIAL, against the Maryland All-Stars at 4:00 PM. The feature match showcases the best-of-the-best high school wrestlers from across the United States challenging the reigning Pennsylvania state champs at 6:00 PM.

The Maryland Team is returning to the Classic for the fourth time and will be looking to tie the series at two apiece since the WPIAL team holds a 2-1 win advantage.

Maryland’s first appearance was the inaugural year, Classic I in 1975, then known as the Pittsburgh Press Old Newsboy Wrestling Classic. The Maryland All-Star team only won 3 of the 13 bouts that year.

The Terps returned 21 years later in 1996, losing in a good contest to the WPIAL All-Stars 28-17. That year, Classic XXII, JR Plienis, from Edgemere, MD, represented the USA All-Star at HWT to help the USA defeat the PA All-Stars.

Most recently, Maryland dominated the WPIAL team in 2012, Classic XXXVIII, winning 10 of 13 bouts and a team score 34-10. Nathan Kraiser was voted the Outstanding Wrestler of the Maryland All-Star Team.

The Wrestling Classic fans have watched many great wrestlers hail from Maryland over the past 45 years, including Kyle Snyder (Classic XL in 2014) and Myles Martin (Classic XLI 2015). Martin was named the USA Team’s Outstanding Wrestler. Last year, Snyder returned to Pittsburgh for his induction into the Pittsburgh Wrestling Classic’s Hall of Fame.

The Maryland wrestling community is very excited and honored to compete in this prestigious event showcasing America’s best high school seniors. We have a very strong senior class with many nationally ranked wrestlers. I’m confident our kids will embrace the opportunity to compete against the best wrestlers from the notorious WPIAL.” said Ryan Mackin.

Ryan Mackin, Head Coach at Owings Mills High School, Joe Bakewell, Associate Head Coach at McDonogh School, Harry Barnabee, Head Coach Mount Saint Joseph High School, and JR Pleinis are working together to organize the Maryland All-Star Team. Plienis has experience competing in the event and bringing the team in 2012. Bakewell, hailing from Elizabeth Forward High School, also coached the Maryland All-Star Team in 1996.

Each year, enthusiastic spectators watch the country’s future NCAA, World and Olympic champions compete head-to-head while thousands watch remotely via FloWrestling’s live broadcast.

Proceeds from the Pittsburgh Wrestling Classic benefit the youth wrestling programs at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Pennsylvania.

Tickets can be purchased online using a credit card at http://www.nwcaonline.com/news-events/events/pittsburgh-classic-2020/ or visiting www.wrestlingclassic.com for a ticket order form.

Contact Kraig Nellis at 412-738-6565 or kraignellis@aol.com.

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