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Wrestling Canada Lutte Nominates 12 Athletes to 2018 Commonwealth Games Team

March 02, 2018

OTTAWAWrestling Canada Lutte is proud to nominate the 12 athletes who will represent Canada April 11-13, 2018 as they step onto the mat at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia. The motivated group, composed of six women and six men, will set their sights on earning Commonwealth Games hardware come April.

Canadian wrestlers have captured more Commonwealth Games medals than any other country with 125 won since the Games began in 1930. Canada was very successful on the mats at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. The team won 12 medals including 7 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze.

Olympic Champion and defending Commonwealth Games Champion Erica Wiebe will return to the Games to defend her title earned in 2014 in Scotland. Wiebe will be competing in the 76 kg weight class. 2016 Olympian Michelle Fazzari will be competing at 62 kg. Fazzari won bronze at the 2017 World Championships in August. Also looking to make a statement at the Commonwealth Games, Jessica MacDonald was a bronze medalist at the 2013 World Championships and a bronze medalist at the 2010 Commonwealth Games.

On the men’s side, Elliot Lake’s Korey Jarvis has made the Canadian Commonwealth Games team for the third consecutive Games. Jarvis, a 2016 Olympian, is the defending Commonwealth Games Champion at 125 kg and won a silver at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India. Jevon Balfour won a silver medal at 65 kg in Glasgow and will compete to reach the podium at the Gold Coast Games at 74 kg.

“The Commonwealth Games in 2014 was one of my favourite experiences,” said Wiebe, of Stittsville, ON. “The Games are so unique in that it has able-body and para-athletes competing side-by-side. The village atmosphere is like nothing else. I’m really excited to be on the Gold Coast in such an amazing venue.”

The Canadian wrestling team nominated to the 2018 Commonwealth Games Team includes:

Weight-class Name Home Club Hometown
50 kg Jessica MacDonald Brock Wrestling Club Windsor, ON
53 kg Diana Weicker Brock Wrestling Club St. Catharines, ON
57 kg Emily Schaefer Brock Wrestling Club Sarnia, ON
62 kg Michelle Fazzari Brock Wrestling Club Hamilton, ON
68 kg Danielle Lappage Calgary Dinos Wrestling Club Olds, AB
76 kg Erica Wiebe Calgary Dinos Wrestling Club Stittsville, ON
57 kg Steve Takahashi London-Western Wrestling Club London, ON
65 kg Vince De Marinis Montreal-YMHA Pierrefonds, QC
74 kg Jevon Balfour Brock Wrestling Club Scarborough, ON
86 kg Alex Moore Montreal-YMHA Montreal, QC
97 kg Jordan Steen Montreal-YMHA Tecumseh, ON
125 kg Korey Jarvis Guelph Wrestling Club Elliot Lake, ON

“There is a high level of excitement and anticipation for the 2018 Commonwealth Games amongst our team,” says Executive Director Tamara Medwidsky. “The team, including athletes, coaches and support staff, represents some of the best in wrestling. We go into the 2018 Games with high expectations in terms of performance and anticipate that the experience gained in Australia will be invaluable leading towards the preparation for the 2020 Olympic Games.”

Wrestling has a proud Canadian heritage and was one of only six sports featured at the inaugural Commonwealth Games held in Hamilton in 1930. The sport has been contested at 17 editions of the Commonwealth Games.

“It’s our pleasure to congratulate the Canadian wrestling team heading to Gold Coast,” said Chef de Mission Claire Carver-Dias. “I’m excited to watch our athletes compete for the top spot in the medal table again in 2018 and add to Canada’s record 125 medals in the sport.”

Athletes and coaches nominated by Wrestling Canada Lutte to Team Canada for the 2018 Commonwealth Games were selected following the 2017 Commonwealth Games Trials which took place November 3, 2017 at the Carrara Sports and Leisure Centre at Simon Fraser University. Wiebe also had to win a wrestle off to earn her spot on the team. Justina Di Stasio, 2017 World Championships bronze medalist, missed the Trials due to an injury and faced off against Wiebe on February 9, 2018.

Team Staff

Head Coach: Tonya Verbeek, St. Catharines, ON Verbeek has coached at the 2017 Senior World Championships and the U23 World Championships since becoming Wrestling Canada Lutte’s International Coach in January 2017. Verbeek captured three Olympic medals as a wrestler, including silver in 2004, bronze in 2008, and silver in 2012.

Coach: Paul Ragusa, Calgary, AB Ragusa has been part of the coaching staff at the 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympics and at multiple senior world championships. As a wrestler Ragusa represented Canada at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta and won a silver medal at the 1994 Commonwealth Games in Victoria.

Coach: Marty Calder, St. Catharines, ON Calder was a member of the coach staff for the 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016 Olympics and multiple senior world championships. Calder also represented Canada at the 1992 and 1996 Olympics as a wrestler.

Coach: Rob Moore, Montreal, QC Moore has coached at multiple World and Pan Am Championships at the junior level.

Coach: Martine Dugrenier, Montreal, QC Dugrenier is a three time world champion, and has competed twice at the Olympics, finishing in 5th place both times. She was inducted into the United World Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2016.

Team Leader: Julie Beaulieu, Wrestling Canada Lutte

Media Attaché: Patrick Kenny

Referee: Gary Bird, Toronto

Referee: Demetra Koutsopodiotis-Gauthier, Kamloops, B.C.

Referee: Marcia Chiasson, Guelph, ON

The entire Canadian Team will be officially announced by Commonwealth Games Canada in March 2018.

The 2018 Games will take place April 4-15, 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia, with 70 participating countries and over 4000 athletes taking part.


Commonwealth Games Canada (CGC) is the international franchise holder for the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth movement in Canada, and an active, contributing member of the Canadian sport community. The mission of CGC is to strengthen sport within Canada and throughout the Commonwealth by participating in the Commonwealth Games and by using sport as a development tool. Visit www.commonwealthgames.ca for information.


Wrestling Canada Lutte is the national sport governing body for Olympic style wrestling in Canada. Among its responsibilities, the association selects and prepares Canada’s teams that participate in international competitions including Continental Championships, World Championships and major multi-sport Games (ie. Commonwealth Games and the Olympic Games).


For more information about Wrestling Canada Lutte

Chris Reith

Marketing and Communications Manager

613-748-5686 x 4

[email protected]

For additional information on the Gold Coast 2018 Canadian Team or CGC:

Sylvie Bigras

Communications Chief

Team Canada – Gold Coast 2018

613 298 1625

[email protected]