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  • Ashley Wang

First-Ever JL Academy Graduating Class Starts High School

Eight Junior League Academy alumni plan to continue wrestling

Junior League student-athletes at the 2021 TOP Camp. Photo by Arrow Wrestling.

Last week, as New York City schools opened their doors for the 2021-22 academic year, eight alumni of the first-ever Beat the Streets Junior League Academy graduating class began their first day of high school with plans to continue their scholastic wrestling careers.

With the launch of the Junior League Academy last year, BTS expanded its previously high school-exclusive Academy program to middle school students as well. This expansion of the Academy, which aims to prepare student-athletes for success both on and off the mat, was an effort by the organization to increase retention rates and overall impact on New York City youth.

"With any program we run at Beat The Streets, retention is a vital aspect,” said Gottfried. “We firmly believe that the more a student-athlete stays with our program, the more opportunities they will have and the more they will grow as people.”

As BTS looks to start its second year of the Junior League Academy off strong, Gottfried is optimistic about the future of youth wrestling in New York City.

“With eight of our Junior League Academy Members returning, I'm extremely excited that we have the ability to continue to positively influence the lives of these student-athletes,” said Gottfried.

List of Junior League Academy student-athletes:




Alex Critelli

Harlem Jets

Trinity High School

Merline Dilone

M.S. 129

St. Benedicts

Will Dimeola

Myra S. Barnes

New Dorp

Kimoni Giles



Persya Perez

Roosevelt Island

Seward Park

Jamely Ramsammy

M.S. 180/181


Aracelli Rodriguez

M.S. 180/181


Oumar Tounkara

M.S. 129

St. Benedicts



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