Team Puma Represents SPIRE at the Ultimate Freestyle Club Duals


Last month, SPIRE’s Director of Wrestling and Head Coach Kenny Monday led an all-star wrestling dream team to compete in the Ultimate Freestyle Club Duals, a two-day wrestling event held in State College, Pennsylvania on April 23rd and 24th. The event featured some of the top high school wrestlers in the country, representing 30 teams from across the United States. 

Coach Monday’s Team Puma consisted of 8th graders and high school athletes who wrestled in eight matches in all. Several of the original Team Puma wrestlers were injured or came down with illnesses before the competition, so Coach Monday filled in the vacancies with the younger competitors. Kenny explained, “It was an incredible opportunity for the whole team, but especially for those younger kids that got the chance to get valuable competitive experience.”

Nasir Bailey, one of the top wrestlers in the country, won seven matches and only gave up one loss. The Illinois native has already won several tournaments this year and has committed to North Carolina to wrestle in the college ranks. Nasir, only a junior this year, will also be competing next month at the U-20 World Team Trials being held at SPIRE.

Caleb Noble, a young, talented wrestler from Illinois, was undefeated (8-0) for the weekend, despite only being in the 8th grade. Kenny enjoys the progress his students are making, saying, “Caleb had an outstanding performance and is one of the top young wrestlers in the country. I had the opportunity to work with Caleb as he participated in our SPIRE wrestling camp on April 15th.”

SPIRE’s Ben Smith had a good performance as well during the Duals, winning six and only dropping two of the eight matches.

“Overall, it was a tremendous tournament and the kids competed hard,” said Coach Monday. “We look forward to putting a team together next year and winning the whole tournament! Thanks to SPIRE Academy for their support and sponsorship. Also, a big thanks to Derrick Noble for being my assistant coach.”

The high school boy’s championship ultimately was won by the Sea Monkey Round Up, representing Felix Wrestling Academy of Morgantown, WV. 

SPIRE sends its congratulations to all wrestlers and teams who competed in the 2022 Ultimate Club Duals event.

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