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Sport Hijab Donations Helps Wrestling Grow in NYC

By Ken Bigley, 08/29/19, 12:30PM EDT


NEW YORK–The Nike Sport Hijab was a game-changer for access to sports for Muslim girls. Made with lightweight, breathable wicking material and a pull-on design that keeps the Hijab in place during activities, the sport Hijab helped remove one more barrier to access. However, due to the price, the sport Hijab was out of reach for many NYC youth wrestlers. That changed this past season as BTS Board Member Hooman Tavakolian, through his charity "Hoomanities", donated sports bras Nike Sport Hijabs to Beat The Streets to be distributed to the Public Schools Athletic League’s Muslim female wrestlers.

Reflecting on the donation Mr. Tavakolian said “It is imperative that support is given to further grow the sport for these Muslim women. It is with great hope women’s wrestling will continue to grow. With everyone in the world helping to bring wrestling to all females we can grow the sport as a whole and allow us to focus on our similarities and find our differences beautiful. This will help grow the sport and have more female presence. It will also give young females self-confidence in life and how to deal with challenges.”

Taft Campus Junior Hind Doucoure, who made the finals of the New York City Championships this spring and received a Nike Hijab at the start of the season noted, “The Nike Hijab is a milestone for Muslim women in sports. It has made wrestling much more enjoyable than a traditional hijab that gets in the way when competing. I feel that is has opened opportunities for young girls to pursue athletic careers no matter what race or religion they belong to.”

BTS Girls Development Director Emma Randall added “As a female in a male-dominated sport like wrestling, there are many barriers to entry. Some are easy to spot such as participating in a gender non-conforming sport or feeling a part of the team. Some are harder such as only having access to a male cut singlet that exposes more of your body, lacking a sports bra for daily practices and competitions, or lack of access to a hijab for sport instead that maintains coverage while wrestling. Hooman and his charity, 'Hoomanities', has been very helpful in reducing barriers for women who want to wrestle, but not have the financial means or ability to purchase a hijab made for sport. We truly appreciate his effort to make our sport accessible for all girls and boys in NYC.”

Mr. Tavakolian concluded, “I am very involved in the world of sports, especially wrestling. My focus has been on empowering at-risk youth around the world, with a focus in the Middle East. Being a Muslim Iranian-American, I am familiar with the cultural and religious restrictions and expectations. Empowering female athletes who may be restricted by religious and cultural limitations is a big step.”

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2019-2020 Junior League Individual and Dual Meet Championships

By Penn O Gottfried 02/13/2020, 10:45am EST

Junior League Wrestlers Complete Another Great Season

Junior League Individual Championships 

On December 15th, 2019, Beat the Streets hosted the annual Junior League City Championships at Harry S. Truman High School in the Bronx. Featuring over 300 wrestlers from 30 teams throughout the five boroughs, a tight team race took place in both the Girls and Boys Standard divisions. In the Girls division, Coach David Roman’s Lighthouse Wrestling Club in Staten Island, took home the top honors by edging out Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy (RKA), coached by Nariman Asambaev (an alumnus from the very same school). The Bronze medal went to Queens’ Leonardo DaVinci, led by first year coach Michael Leighton. In the Standard Boys division, the Eagle Academy in the Bronx, coached by Jonathon Khoury, claimed its third consecutive championship title. Manhattan’s Robert F. Wagner, coached by Sean Coffin and Andy Martinez, returned to their winning ways by taking second place. In just their second year, Coach Jonathon Alicea’s Cornerstone Academy in the Bronx, claimed the Bronze medal.  

This year’s Junior League Championships  served as a testament to the growth of New York City wrestling as well  the impact that Beat the Streets is having on the community. Among the 30 Junior League teams that participated this fall, ten were led by Beat the Streets alumni that are now giving back to the wrestling community. Furthermore, there were hundreds of friends and family in attendance cheering on their loved ones which made this event a family affair. Beat the Streets would like to thank all of the coaches, kids, parents and fans for their continued support throughout the season and throughout the year.  We know that next year will be even better! 

Junior League Dual Meet Championships 

On February 1st, 2020, for the first time in eight years, Beat the Streets hosted the Junior League Dual Meet Championships. Eagle Academy, Robert Wagner, Cornerstone Academy and Excellence Charter School each fielded a squad to compete, and they did not disappoint. In the semifinals, number one seed, Eagle Academy downed the number four seed, Excellence Academy. On the bottom half of the bracket, third seed, Cornerstone Academy edged out a victory over the number two seed, Robert Wagner. In the finals, Cornerstone completed the upset with a victory over the Eagle Academy to claim the title as Junior League Dual Meet Champions. 

Mat Talk 

“Wrestling is definitely becoming  more popular on Staten Island.  The number of kids on my team have quadrupled since the 2017 season...I even had to stop letting kids join and send them to Tottenville’s team!  It was great seeing my returning wrestlers help the new kids and guide them towards success, especially for the girls.” - David Roman (Head Coach, Lighthouse Wrestling Club) 

“I believe Cornerstone wrestled tremendously this year.  Having a core group of kids who are beyond dedicated is truly contagious both on and off the mat.  It’s fair to say that everyone’s hard work and effort paid off when it mattered most” - Jon Alicea (Head Coach,  Cornerstone Academy) 

Team Results  
Boys: 1st- Eagle Academy, 2nd- Robert F. Wagner, 3rd- Cornerstone Academy 

Girls: 1st- Lighthouse Wrestling (Myra S. Barnes), 2nd- Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy, 3rd- Leonardo DaVinci 

Novice: 1st- Roosevelt Island, 2nd- East Harlem, 3rd- Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy 

Individual Results 

Boys Standard Division 
70 lbs: 1st- Eric Bocanegra (Elite WA/Harlem Jets), 2nd- Laziz Erkinjonov (K-Wrestling), 3rd- Qu Dir Lloyd (Eagle) 

75 lbs: 1st- Ty Sun Gilliard (Eagle), 2nd- Nathaniel Gonzalez (Cornerstone), Josiah Hannah (American Youth) 

80 lbs: 1st- Oumar Tounkara (MS 129), 2nd- Andrew Bonita (Wagner), 3rd- Alan Biktayov (K-Wrestling) 

85 lbs: 1st- Kimoni Giles (Eagle), 2nd- Maxim Belousov (K-Wrestling), 3rd- Jadiel De La Cruz (Cornerstone) 

90 lbs: 1st- Rasul Kakhramonov (K-Wrestling), 2nd- Jonibek Astonov (K-Wrestling), 3rd- Engher Cabral (Eagle) 

95 lbs: 1st- Sobir Salimov (Elite WA), 2nd- Alex Amorosino (Elite WA), 3rd- Mohamad Kakhramonov (K-Wrestling) 

100 lbs: 1st- Tyler Fromm (American Youth), 2nd- William Bruce (Harlem Jets), 3rd- Kristopher Sanchez (Cornerstone) 

108 lbs: 1st- Merlin Dilone (MS 129), 2nd- James Gathers (MS 129), 3rd- Jaemin Kim (Hunter) 

113lbs: 1st- Idel Mendez (Cornerstone), 2nd- Muhamadou Kabbeh (MS 129), 3rd- Niegel Gladden (Harlem Jets) 

120 lbs: 1st- Brandon Dougbey (Excellence), 2nd- Justin Daniyan (Wagner), 3rd- Jaden Lugo (Robert Van Wyck) 

128 lbs: 1st- Dwayne Harris (Upper Ten Eyck), 2nd- Kingston Dasilva (American Youth), 3rd- Rashad Michel (Eagle) 

138 lbs: 1st- Diego Tlatelp (Wagner), 2nd- Hunter Colon (American Youth), 3rd- Dan Jackson (Lighthouse) 

148 lbs: 1st- Corey Brown (MS 129), 2nd- Kai Darrell (American Youth), 3rd- Steve Delacruz (Robert Van Wyck) 

160 lbs: 1st- Joseph Guevarra (Eagle), 2nd- Behruz Toshkulov (Robert Van Wyck), 3rd- Ben Goldberg (Wagner) 

175 lbs: 1st- Cristian Solano (Eagle), 2nd- Marvellous Johnson (Excellence), 3rd- David Robinson (Robert Van Wyck) 

200 lbs: 1st- Chris Cordero (Wagner), 2nd- Sba Mushkudiani (Elite WA), 3rd- Shawn Stewart (Leaders of Tomorrow) 

265 lbs: 1st- Michael Dunn (Wagner), 2nd- Kemar Morgan (Leaders of Tomorrow), 3rd- Adonis Snow (Excellence) 


Girls Standard Division 
70 lbs: 1st- Amira Watson (Count Basie), 2nd- Adunade Okeyemi (BLES) 

75 lbs: 1st- Alexis Hartje (Lighthouse), 2nd- Stacie Luciano (Inwood), 3rd- Estelle Smith (BLES) 

85 lbs: 1st- Aracelli Rodriguez (Truman), 2nd- Paulina Pham (Elite WA), 3rd- Gertie Angel (Harlem Jets) 

97 lbs: 1st- Kylie Raczy (Harlem Jets), 2nd- Jamely Ramsammy (Truman), 3rd- Alicja Leciey (Lighthouse) 

101 lbs: 1st- Enalyse Pacheco (RKA), 2nd- Katherine Jarama (IS 61), 3rd- Nevaeh Zuninga (RKA) 

112 lbs: 1st- Ellianne Fernandez (RKA), 2nd- Darianny Grullon (MS 129), 3rd- Persya Perez (Roosevelt Island) 

123 lbs: 1st- Fiona Bolotti (RKA), 2nd- Keyara Torres (Robert Van Wyck), 3rd- Kimberllee Marrero (BEES) 

136 lbs: 1st- Hannah Baker (Lighthouse), 2nd- Michelle Morocho (IS 61), 3rd- Priscilla Garcia (Unity) 

155 lbs: 1st- Courtney Brown (Cornerstone), 2nd- Jana Shabaan (Lighthouse), Jelene Graham (East Harlem) 

175 lbs: 1st- Arianna Sanchez (Robert Van Wyck), 2nd- Myrie Grady (Upper Ten Eyck) 


Boys Novice Division 

61 lbs: 1st- Alex Suarez (Roosevelt Island), 2nd- Michael Cummin (Cornerstone), 3rd- Cobl Cofield (BLES) 

70 lbs: 1st- Arlo Sherr (LREI), 2nd- Alessandro Alessandro (Roosevelt Island), 3rd- Tyler Price (Harlem Jets) 

76 lbs: 1st- Jacob Burgos (RKA), 2nd- Dean Butler (Harlem Jets), 3rd- Ahmad Rasheed (Nathaniel Hawthorne) 

83 lbs: 1st- Eric Ivry (Elite), 2nd- Carmelo Valentine (Roosevelt Island), 3rd- Robert Payne (Leaders of Tomorrow) 

88 lbs: 1st- Marlon Bravo (East Harlem), 2nd- Jalen Jeanlouis (Nathaniel Hawthorne), 3rd- Eddie Perez (Roosevelt Island) 

103 lbs: 1st- Nasiah Seabrook (RKA), 2nd- Darryl Braun (Robert Van Wyck), 3rd- Nysani Benedith (Excellence) 

107 lbs: 1st- Jadun Blackman (PS 189), 2nd- Miguel Soto (Lighthouse Wrestling Club), 3rd- Gabe Mason (Leaders of Tomorrow) 

113 lbs: 1st- Nelsandro Landa (Roosevelt Island), 2nd- Kevin Mckinley (East Harlem), 3rd- Khari Madir (Upper Ten) 

118 lbs: 1st- Aidan Santiago (BEES), 2nd- Fares Delvalle (RKA), 3rd- Deangelo Hunt (Roosevelt Island) 

130 lbs: 1st- David Liffey (Wagner), 2nd- George Stankov (Nathaniel Hawthorne), 3rd- Daniel Kim (Hunter) 

140 lbs: 1st- Elijah Greene (East Harlem), 2nd- Giovanny Gonzalez (East Harlem), 3rd- Daniel Laino (RKA) 

  • Gotham City Open Venue Announced

  • By Emma Randall 02/05/2020, 1:15pm EST
  • BTS is proud to host the 7th Annual Cliff Keen Gotham City Open on April 10-11th, 2020 at The Post BK in Greenpoint, Brooklyn
  • Read More

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