February 12, 2007
MARQUETTE—For the first time, the United States Olympic Education Center is inviting community members to compete at the Olympic Challenge, which will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday (Feb. 14) in Northern Michigan University’s Superior Dome.
Media personalities Mike Ludlum from WLUC-TV 6 and Dennis Whitley from Q107-WMQT and ESPN Radio 90 will strap on sumo suits to wrestle in two one-minute rounds. Whitley is excited for the match.
“I’ve done some wrestling in the past, but nothing with inflatable suits before,” he said. “I’ve known Mike for a while now; it will be tough to fight a guy of his stature.”
Another scheduled match includes a face-off between NMU housing and residence life resident directors and first-year graduate students Lindsay Sparks and Courtney Werner Reynolds. Members of NMU’s Greek organizations are also expected to hit the mat.
In the USOEC lineup, the Greco-Roman wrestling team will take on the U.S. Army. Oscar Wood, a 2004 Olympian, is tentatively scheduled to wrestle against 2006 world bronze medalist and NMU senior Harry Lester in a featured match. Lester is in position to take on Wood as he defeated 2006 world champion Li Yanyan of China 4-1, 6-0 at 66 kilograms last week (Feb. 7) at the Chicago Cup in Chicago, Ill.
The USOEC boxing team will take on Canada. In a special bout, two female Canadian national champions, Jamie Lea Pollock and Amber Konikow, will go head to head. It’s only the second USOEC-hosted competition where women boxers will climb into the ring.
The USOEC’s weightlifting and women’s freestyle wrestling teams will also compete in intra-squad competitions.
Admission is free for students and $2 for adults. Tickets are available for purchase at the door the night of the event.