Gary Abbott – The on-going drama to finalize the Main Event for the 2010 Beat the Streets Gala on the U.S.S. Intrepid in New York City on Thursday, May 13 has taken another twist.
Initially, the featured freestyle bout was a rematch between NCAA champions Brent Metcalf of Iowa and Darrion Caldwell of North Carolina State, who battled three times in college and are top challengers for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team at 66 kg/145.5 lbs.
Caldwell was injured in training on Monday, just three days before the event. Organizers secured a new rival for Metcalf in the Main Event, 2010 NCAA champion Kyle Dake, which was announced on Tuesday night.
It’s now the day before the event and there’s another change. Dake cannot wrestle after all.
Another talented opponent for Metcalf has been secured, former NCAA runner-up and 2007 Junior World freestyle champion Bubba Jenkins.
Metcalf met Jenkins, who was then competing for Penn State, in the finals of the 2008 NCAA Championships in St. Louis, Mo., claiming a 14-8 decision for his first NCAA title.
Since then, Metcalf’s college career has ended. He was a two-time NCAA champion (2008, 2010) and a 2009 NCAA runner-up. Metcalf started his career at Virginia Tech and lost one year of eligibility when he transferred to Iowa. He completed his college career with a 108-3 record, and was the 2008 Dan Hodge Trophy winner as the nation’s best college wrestler.
Jenkins competed in the 2009 NCAA Championships, but did not earn All-American honors. This past season, he left the Penn State team. He will attend Arizona State next season for his final college season. This spring, competing for the Sunkist Kids, Jenkins won a gold medal at the University Nationals in freestyle at 66 kg/145.5 lbs.
So, fans at the Beat the Streets Gala will see Metcalf face another rival from his college career, another athlete who is an Olympic hopeful for 2012.
“We truly appreciate all of these great athletes volunteering to participate in the Battle on the Intrepid and supporting the Beat the Streets program,” said Brian Giffin of Beat the Streets, Inc. “We thank both Darrion Caldwell and Kyle Dake for their support of this event. It is unfortunate that they can not participate. We are pleased that Bubba Jenkins has agreed to wrestle, and we expect the Main Event against Brent Metcalf will be an outstanding match. All of the matches should be fun, and are for a great cause.”
The event will be held on the USS Intrepid, an aircraft carrier which is docked on the west side of Manhattan in New York City. It is part of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. It is being billed as the Battle on the Intrepid, in recognition of “wrestlers in the nation’s service.” The competition is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.
TheMat.com will provide a live webcast of the seven-match card from the deck of the U.S.S. Intrepid, starting at approximately 6:15 p.m. The USA Wrestling Prime Time postgame show will follow from the Beat the Streets Gala dinner and awards presentation at approximately 8:15 p.m. Gary Abbott and Mitch Hull will call the action.
Each year, the Beat the Streets Gala is held to celebrate wrestling and raise funds for Beat the Streets Wrestling, Inc., the successful program which has provided wrestling opportunities for thousands of middle school and high school students in New York City.
Registration for the Beat the Streets Gala will begin at 6:00 p.m., followed by the Battle on the Intrepid from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Cocktails will be served from 7:30 p.m., followed by the dinner and awards presentation starting at 8:15 p.m. All participants will disembark from the U.S.S. Intrepid at 11:00 p.m.
There will be a live musical performance by The Lost Trailers at the function.
The minimum donation to support Beat the Streets and reserve admission to the Gala is $150. There are a many number of other levels of contributions available to those who wish to join the excitement and support this worthy cause.
For further information about the event, please visit the website at www.beat-the-streets.org or you may contact Brian Giffin via email at BGiffin@beat-the-streets.org or via phone at 212-777-5702.