Golden Girl: Longwood’s Burkert Pins Her Way to 2009 Junior National Women’s Title

When you think Longwood wrestling, what names immediately come to mind? Kerry McCoy perhaps? How about Nick Hall Sr.? In the long and prestigous history of Longwood, there have been countless individuals that have added to the rich tradition… and as of Monday July 20th, a new name has officially etched HERSELF into the sands of time…Jenna Burkert….Burkert, who despite attending Marquette Senior High School in Michigan (in order to train as part of the USOEC), still considers Suffolk County home, became the first Empire Stater in 2009 to win a National title when she pinned Randi Beltz of Missouri with :29 seconds remaining in the opening period to win the 132-pound bracket at the Junior National Women’s Freestyle Tournament in Fargo, N.D….Winning the crown puts an emphatic cap on what has been an extremely impressive year for the rising junior. In March, Burkert won the USGWA National title with a 12-5 decision over former 2x National Champion, Hanna Martin…Martin (Oklahoma) was also a national champion this afternoon, winning the 116-pound weight class.

While winning a national crown is itself an immense accomplishment, perhaps what makes this feat most impressive of all is the nature in which Ms. Burkert was able to pull it off….In six matches in pool play, only one of Burkert’s opponents were able to survive long enough to see the second period (that girl got pinned 1:10 into the 2nd period after getting teched 7-0 in the 1st)…In earning her place into the championship bout, Burkert scored falls in 0:43 (over Hanna Hall of Ohio), 0:14 (over Texas product Avery Souders), 0:13 (over Montana’s Cassandra Schmidt), 0:53 (over Haylee Childs of Florida), and 0:35 (against pool runner-up Kirsten Strickler of Texas)….Cassie Laslo of Michigan was the aforementioned lone wrestler to send their bout beyond the initial two minutes.

The title bout would not get off to the kind of start that Burkert would have preferred however….After securing the opening takedown of the match, Beltz would add a pair of exposures to seize what appeared to be a commanding 5-0 lead with just about one minute remaining in the opening period….Then lightning struck….With her back to the wall (a single point away from having the period terminated because of the six point margin rule), Jenna controlled her Mizzou opponent with a front headlock, using it to toss Beltz to her back…Switching off to a half, Burkert squeezed as tight as her body would allow her, not relenting until she heard the official get confirmation and slap the mat.

Burkert would not be the only New York female wrestler to do the state proud today, as she was joined by six other young women who also earned the honor of being able to call themselves All-Americans. These six special ladies were: Carlene Sluberski (2009 NYS DII runner-up @96 pounds; 2008 National Junior Women’s Champion) who dropped a hard fought three period decision in the 95-pound finals, Hanna Grisewood who placed 4th (also at 95-pounds), Tanya Kusse who won her final bout of the event to emerge with a third place finish at 116-pounds, Logan Howard, the bronze medalist at 124-pounds, Shana Lee Prifte (also of Longwood), who took 7th at 139-pounds, and Mary Westman, a fifth place finisher at 146-pounds.

The action will resume later this evening when the boys return to the mat for the finals of the Cadet Greco National tournament…New York did not qualify anyone for the finals of this event….Conor Wetzel (189) will compete for third place honors while Jonathan Clemente (130) and Dylan Palacio (135) will both be looking to finish fifth.

Jenna Burkert’s Post Match Interview

2009 Junior National Women’s Tournament Placement Matches (Courtesy of Track Wrestling)

95-Pounds
1st Place – Emily Webster of Missouri
2nd Place – Carlene Sluberski of New York
3rd Place – Erin Golston of Illinois
4th Place – Hanna Grisewood of New York
5th Place – Brianna Rahall of Virginia
6th Place – Erin Uehara of Hawaii
7th Place – Kristi Garr of Michigan
8th Place – Meghan Chun of Hawaii
1st Place Match
Emily Webster (Missouri) over Carlene Sluberski (New York) Dec 4-0,0-1,1-0
3rd Place Match
Erin Golston (Illinois) over Hanna Grisewood (New York) Dec 2-0,2-0
5th Place Match
Brianna Rahall (Virginia) over Erin Uehara (Hawaii) Dec 2-0,0-3,1-0
7th Place Match
Kristi Garr (Michigan) over Meghan Chun (Hawaii) Fall 2-0,0:41

102-Pounds
1st Place – Victoria Anthony of California—Named Tournament O.W.
2nd Place – Alex Gomez of California
3rd Place – Brittney Taylor of Nebraska
4th Place – Kayleigh Longley of Maine
5th Place – JoMae Alewine of Washington
6th Place – Jenna Pisarski of Texas
7th Place – Sierra Snay of Virginia
8th Place – Megan Garcia of Colorado
1st Place Match
Victoria Anthony (California) over Alex Gomez (California) TF 7-0,7-0
3rd Place Match
Brittney Taylor (Nebraska) over Kayleigh Longley (Maine) TF 7-0,6-0
5th Place Match
JoMae Alewine (Washington) over Jenna Pisarski (Texas) Fall 1:39
7th Place Match
Sierra Snay (Virginia) over Megan Garcia (Colorado) Dec 8-1,1-1

109-Pounds
1st Place – C.C. Weber of Michigan
2nd Place – Kayla Brendlinger of Pennsylvania
3rd Place – Paige Nemec of Ohio
4th Place – Sarah Hildenbrandt of Indiana
5th Place – Malia Medeiros of Hawaii
6th Place – Kalin Alverez-Knight of California
7th Place – Lauryn Bruggink of Colorado
8th Place – Taylor Busboom of Texas
1st Place Match
C.C. Weber (Michigan) over Kayla Brendlinger (Pennsylvania) TF 6-0,6-0
3rd Place Match
Paige Nemec (Ohio) over Sarah Hildenbrandt (Indiana) Dec 2-0,2-0
5th Place Match
Malia Medeiros (Hawaii) over Kalin Alverez-Knight (California) Fall 0-4,0:41
7th Place Match
Lauryn Bruggink (Colorado) over Taylor Busboom (Texas) Fall 1:23

116-Pounds
1st Place – Hanna Martin of Oklahoma
2nd Place – Natalie Rutt of Minnesota
3rd Place – Tanya Kusse of New York
4th Place – Chrissy Chow of Hawaii
5th Place – Brazel Marquez of California
6th Place – Miranda Bennett of Missouri
7th Place – Megan Yamaguchi of Hawaii
8th Place – Kyah Larson of Idaho
1st Place Match
Hanna Martin (Oklahoma) over Natalie Rutt (Minnesota) Fall 4-0,1:00
3rd Place Match
Tanya Kusse (New York) over Chrissy Chow (Hawaii) Dec 0-1,1-0,2-0
5th Place Match
Brazel Marquez (California) over Miranda Bennett (Missouri) Dec 2-0,4-1
7th Place Match
Megan Yamaguchi (Hawaii) over Kyah Larson (Idaho) Fall 3-0,1:05

124-Pounds
1st Place – Brieanna Delgado of South Carolina
2nd Place – Alli Ragan of Illinois
3rd Place – Logan Howard of New York
4th Place – Katy Yoder of Ohio
5th Place – Roni Goodale of Iowa
6th Place – Brittney Faust of Pennsylvania
7th Place – Gabrielle Klein of Wisconsin
8th Place – Tianna Camous of California
1st Place Match
Brieanna Delgado (South Carolina) over Alli Ragan (Illinois) Dec 1-0,3-1
3rd Place Match
Logan Howard (New York) over Katy Yoder (Ohio) Fall 5-4,0:35
5th Place Match
Roni Goodale (Iowa) over Brittney Faust (Pennsylvania) ID
7th Place Match
Gabrielle Klein (Wisconsin) over Tianna Camous (California) Dec 4-0,6-4

132-Pounds
1st Place – Jenna Burkert of New York
2nd Place – Randi Beltz of Missouri
3rd Place – Katarina Perez of California
4th Place – Kirsten Strickler of Texas
5th Place – Haylee Childs of Florida
6th Place – Kerstin Harmon of Ohio
7th Place – Anna McAleavey of Texas
8th Place – Cassie Laslo of Michigan
1st Place Match
Jenna Burkert (New York) over Randi Beltz (Missouri) Fall 1:31
3rd Place Match
Katarina Perez (California) over Kirsten Strickler (Texas) Fall 1:46
5th Place Match
Haylee Childs (Florida) over Kerstin Harmon (Ohio) Dec 0-6,1-1,2-0
7th Place Match
Anna McAleavey (Texas) over Cassie Laslo (Michigan) Dec 5-1,6-0

2 thoughts on “Golden Girl: Longwood’s Burkert Pins Her Way to 2009 Junior National Women’s Title”

  1. Thanks for pointing that out….I remember someone telling me that Shana was a LW product…It must have slipped my mind.

    I edited the article so that it reflects your piece of information.

    Thanks again !!!

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