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A circle in the sand

Since it's a new twist on the ancient sport, the events are pretty open. Meets are coed, featuring wrestlers from the peewee ranks at 10 years old, and up.

Why beach wrestling?

"For thousands of years, in dozens of cultures, wrestling op-ponents would face each other, centered in a circle drawn on the sand," Bergami said. "Through rounds of hand-to-hand combat, a victor would emerge to boast that they were king of the sport. That's what will be happening in Pine Lake on Aug. 5."

USA Wrestling, the national governing body for wrestling, will sanction the competition. The local event is one of only four such championship matches set for the East Coast this summer. The other East Coast national competitions will occur in Long Beach, New York, New Jersey and Florida.

The regional championship matches all lead up to the world championship meet in Antalya, Turkey, in October.

Wrestlers win their matches when they score falls by forcing the opponent's shoulders to the sand; they score two takedowns; they score two throws; their opponent is penalized twice for fleeing the competition area; they score one takedown and have one fleeing call against their opponent.

For information, call 346-1130, or visit www.tntwrestling.org.""

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