Injured Baldwin third at nationals
News-Gazette Photo/Andrew Sullivan Fox Baldwin (top) recently placed third nationally at the USA Freestyle Nationals at Fargo, N.D. despite suffering an upper body injury that will require several weeks of rest to heal.
By Rick Pedone
Fox Baldwin, who recently placed third and earned All-America status at the USA Freestyle National Championships at Fargo, N.D., is working out with the FILA USA Freestyle Junior World Team in Columbus, Ohio.
Competing at 160 pounds, Baldwin, a four-time Osceola High state champion, won six of seven matches at Fargo despite being limited by an upper body injury.
“I am thankful for placing third at the Freestyle National Championships, but I am not satisfied,” he said. “I have some injuries that I am recovering from, and I ask that you pray for healing.”
It is only the most recent accomplishment of a summer of outstanding performances by Baldwin, who placed fifth at the International Junior Championships at Izmir, Turkey in June.
In April, he placed fifth at the FILA Junior Nationals at Las Vegas and became an All-American.
He defeated five college wrestlers at the FILA tournament.
Baldwin, who has committed to the University of Virginia, has spent much of this year training with Team USA at the Olympic Training Center at Colorado Springs.
He also went to the World Team Camp at Arizona State where he trained with many of the nation’s top wrestlers like Jordan Burroughs, Ed Ruth, Brent Metcalf, James Green and Tyler Caldwell.
At the World Team Camp, he earned a win by criteria, 11-11, over Anthony Valencia, a wrestler who defeated Baldwin, 10-0, previously.
“The win over Valencia shows how much I have improved in the last month,” Baldwin said.
Baldwin holds national high school records for the most career victories (337) and pins (257) and he is a two-time Osceola County Male Athlete of the Year award winner.
He will compete at OHS for his senior year and try to win his fifth consecutive state championship starting in November.