He has conquered the United States. He takes on the world this summer.
Jared Lawrence of Sandpoint captured titles at 112 pounds in freestyle and Greco-Roman at the Cadet World Trials held at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., last weekend, qualifying for the World Finals.
Lawrence, 15, was the lone wrestler to win titles in both styles. The Cadet division is for 15- to 16-year-olds.
He earned an all-expenses paid trip to the freestyle World Finals, which will be held June 20-30 in Moscow.
In the freestyle final, Lawrence defeated Scott Burnett of Elyria Catholic High School in Ohio, a national champion last year at 103 pounds. Lawrence ultimately won on by referee’s decision.
A wrestler must score at least three points for a win and the final went to overtime with Burnett leading 1-0 after the 4-minute regulation period.
Two minutes into the three-minute overtime, Burnett scored another takedown for a 2-0 lead. But Lawrence countered with a takedown and turned Burnett for another point before the match ended deadlocked at 2-all.
Lawrence was determined champion because Burnett was given a caution for going out of bounds in regulation with Lawrence in scoring position. The next criteria the referee could have used to determine a winner was back points. Lawrence had the edge there as well.
“That’s the closest match I’ve ever had, the most challenging match I’ve ever had,” said Lawrence, 61-0 in high school and a two-time state champion. “The final match came down to my positioning. He was extremely fast and quick so I had to be in good positions at all times.”
Lawrence defeated a wrestler from New York 4-0 in the Greco final. He had five wins in freestyle and four in Greco.
“To win in both styles means a lot to me; it’s a big accomplishment,” Lawrence said. “The freestyle (championship) means more to me because the matches in Greco weren’t as close.”
Sandpoint High coach Dan Taylor coached Lawrence at the World Trials.
“He’s gone to another level; he really learned a lot,” Taylor said. “It was a great experience. He’ll be an even better wrestler (next year).”
Other Lawrence signs
Brett Lawrence, Jared’s older brother who became just the second wrestler in State A-1 history to win four state titles, has signed a letter of intent with the University of Minnesota.
Lawrence, 119-5 with state titles at 103, 112, 119 and 125 pounds, chose Minnesota over Northwestern and Boise State. He took visits to all three schools.
“I was most comfortable at Minnesota,” said Lawrence, who carries a 4.0 grade-point average. He said the fact that his hero and former threetime state champion Zac Taylor of Sandpoint wrestles at Minnesota also influenced his decision.