By Markos Tsegaye
Four of the Greco-Roman wrestlers from the Minnesota Storm are now in Denmark as they will be competing in the Thor Masters tournament from March 24-25.
Richard Carlson, Christian DuLaney, Fritz Schierl, and Lukas Poloncic will be those four representatives, an opportunity they are all looking to make the most of.
The Thor Masters tournament offers one of the better international tournaments and training camps in Greco-Roman wrestling. DuLaney said the Storm will be well prepared for what’s to come in Denmark.
“We’ve got world-class coaches,” DuLaney said. “They [Carlson, Schierl, and Poloncic] are around my weight and are great practice partners as well.”
The coaches DuLaney is referring to are Brandon Paulson and Dan Chandler, two former Olympians and USA Wrestling Coach of the Year winners. Both coaches have worked closely with the wrestlers ahead of their departure overseas.
While all four wrestlers have different motivations for the Thor Masters tournament, Carlson in particular made his aspirations clear as he’ll be competing in Europe for the first time since 2014.
“I want to win the tournament,” Carlson said. “I’ve only gotten to wrestle foreigners a handful of times in my career, but it’s always a great experience.”
Schierl said the experience of competing internationally won’t be something he’ll overlook as he understands what can come out of that.
“I’m really excited to train and pick the brains of all these coaches and wrestlers from overseas,” Schierl said. “Even though we don’t speak the same verbal language, we speak the same sport language which I think is really cool.”
As for Poloncic, he’ll be taking a composed approach to Thor Masters as he trusts the work he’s put in both physically and mentally.
“I’m not expecting to win a certain amount of matches or anything like that,” Poloncic said. “If I feel like I went out there and did as well as I could, I can adjust from there and call that a success.”
To watch the Storm at Thor Masters, a live stream will be made available on the tournament’s website.
Pictures courtesy of Markos Tsegaye