Striving to reach a goal he set at the outset of his Penn State wrestling career last year, Roman Bravo-Young mentioned today on a Facebook live video that he hopes the NCAA will allow another year for all athletes whose seasons were cut short because of cancellations over the COVID-19 pandemic.
“One of my goals was to become a four-time All-American and I hope I can still do that,” said Bravo-Young, a former Sunnyside standout who earned All-American status as a freshman last year at 133 pounds.
A video presentation by Fanco Wrestling mentioned that Bravo-Young would have been a favorite to win the NCAA title at 133 pounds this season. He was slated to be the No. 5 seed at that weight class in the NCAA tournament before the competition was canceled. He was 19-2 overall and 6-2 against the field this season.
Bravo-Young mentioned it was difficult to learn that the NCAA competition was canceled — “Some of the guys broke down and cried,” he said — but he adheres to what Penn State coach Cael Sanderson told the team about believing it happened for a reason.
“It sucks knowing that the time we put in for this long season, injuries that we withstand, and the mental roller coaster we endeavor will be taken away. Everything happens for a reason though. Stay safe out there,” Bravo-Young posted on Facebook.
Bravo-Young said he flew to Tucson the day after Penn State’s campus was shut down because of COVID-19 on March 13. He has trained daily with long runs and workouts at the JET Sports Training.
He is 44-9 in his two years with the Nittany Lions after going 182-0 in his career at Sunnyside in which he won four individual state titles. He was part of the Blue Devils’ state championship team as a senior in 2018, breaking the dynasty’s five-year span without a title. The Blue Devils this season made it three straight state championships under coach Anthony Leon.
“It’s always good to see them win the state title because I know how hard they work for it,” Bravo-Young said. “You’re’ going to see them win it more every year..”
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.