Yasire Brooks – Wrestler of the Month

Name: Yasire Brooks
School: Belmont Charter School
Coach: Coach McCabe, Coach Nick, Coach Stickney, Coach Carden
Age/Grade: 9 years old, 4th grade
Number of Years Wrestling:  2
Why did you start wrestling?  I started wrestling because my brother told me to. Also, it looked fun to me.
Why do you enjoy wrestling?  I enjoy it because I get to travel to other places and meet different people. Also, I get to show off my skills. I get to compete against people that are bigger than me and still win.  I also enjoy wrestling because it helps me get out my frustrations with a healthy activity.
What impact has wrestling had on your life and academics? I pray before all my matches that I do not get hurt because I know that would hurt my mom. Sometimes when I see people on the street, I give them money and I say to myself that I am not going to be like that. It makes me work harder in school so that one day I can give my mom everything.  I plan to make good choices with my life so that I can have a good life.
What do you want to be when you get older? I I want to be a wrestler and if that does not work out I want to be a football player. (Don’t let my size fool you!)
What is your favorite college/university? University of Pennsylvania
Who is your favorite athlete? LeSean McCoy, Adriane Peterson

Beat the Streets Establishes First Ever Youth Wrestling League for Philadelphia Student-Athletes

At the start of this academic year Beat the Streets Philadelphia established a youth league for the programs that our organization sponsors in the city of Philadelphia. The development of a league for our wrestlers is a critical step in providing every opportunity possible for our student-athletes to develop the skills needed to succeed on the mat. We have 9 programs participating in the league this year and we have successfully completed 3 weekends of competition at several sites throughout the city.
The University of Pennsylvania has been a tremendous partner and has allowed our youth wrestlers to participate in league events in the Palestra prior to their dual meets. In addition to the events in the Palestra our kids have had the opportunity to wrestle in matches at Drexel University and Rider University. This experience in particular provides an excellent opportunity for our kids to not only participate in matches in an amazing venue, but also an opportunity to watch a college match which in turn provides them with motivation to continue pushing themselves athletically.
Youth teams we sponsor just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, in Gloucester City and Camden, are also well under way with their league competition as part of the Grapevine Youth Wrestling League. Many of their wrestlers continue to develop and although there are no team scores during their bouts they are definitely showing marked improvement on the mat.
The Beat the Streets Philadelphia Youth Wrestling League is the first league that is intended for student-athletes in the city of Philadelphia and we are excited to see the impact this development will have on our student-athletes. Following the regular season, student-athletes from all of our sponsored youth programs will participate in the 2nd Annual Philadelphia Youth Wrestling Day at George Washington HS on February 19th.

Beat the Streets Philadelphia Sponsors Youth Takedown Tournament at Drexel

Beat the Streets Philadelphia sponsored a Takedown Tournament prior to the Drexel University vs. University of Virginia dual meet on Sunday 12/18 in the Daskalakis Athletic Center on the campus of Drexel University.  Over 100 kids from 6 of the programs sponsored by BTS Philadelphia were in attendance for the event.  The wrestlers we broken out into groups of 4 based on age and weight and had a chance to compete in a round robin takedown tournament with medals awarded to students based on their placing in the tournament.  For many of the wrestlers it was their first experience competing against opponents from another team and it provided them valuable experience prior to the start of the BTS Philadelphia Youth League which begins on the weekend of 1/7 and 1/8.
Many members of the Drexel wrestling team assisted with running the event and our students had a chance to interact with them throughout the day which is an invaluable experience for our student-athletes.  We are extremely appreciative of the time those college wrestlers spent with our kids because it provides positive role models for our young student-athletes.  Drexel’s Head Coach Matt Azevedo was extremely gracious to allow BTS Philadelphia to host this event in their impressive athletic center and Assistant coaches Zach Sheaffer and Todd Schavrien were extremely helpful with ensuring the event ran smoothly.
Following the completion of the Takedown Tournament our student-athletes had lunch and were able to stick around to watch the college match between Drexel and Virginia.  This provided an excellent chance for our student-athletes to watch extremely high level wrestling in a tremendous environment.  They cheered on the hometown wrestlers from Drexel and several of the wrestlers even had a chance to wrestle in exhibitions during the intermission after the 157 pound match in front of all of the fans.  It was a great experience for those wrestlers as they received a warm welcome from the fans and put forth an impressive effort for all in attendance.  The overall experience for the kids will certainly encourage them to push themselves as they are continue to improve as young wrestlers.
Check out the coverage of the event on FloWrestling.org by going to the following links:
You can also check additional video coverage on our site at the following link:
It is only through the generosity of our donors that BTSP is able to support individuals and wrestling programs throughout inner city Philadelphia, Camden and Gloucester City in an effort to develop not only solid wrestlers, but more importantly well-adjusted and motivated individuals. You can make a donation by going to: Donate Now

Summer Training Makes Winter Champions: Beat The Streets Philadelphia Wrestlers Attend Five Day Wrestling Camp in Scranton, Pennsylvania

As the old wrestling saying goes, “Summer Wrestling Makes Winter Champions.”  From June 26 – 30, Beat The Streets Philadelphia (BTSP) wrestlers from area public schools attended wrestling camp in Scranton, Pennsylvania, putting the old adage into practice.  This was a chance for the kids to get out of the city and see the mountains and hills of northeast Pennsylvania.  BTSP Camper Enrique Hernandez recognized camp as a great opportunity to experience the culture outside of Philadelphia and to “get me off the streets.”  The camp was an important part of not only off season training, but also exposing BTSP wrestlers to new people, experiences, and cultures.
The campers learned technique from wrestling greats Rob Eiter, Matt Valenti, and Brian Dolph, and also took part in team dual meets and a takedown tournament.  Our wrestlers were actively involved in demonstrations by the technicians, including Valenti’s lift and turk series, which the kids loved and picked up on well.
BTSP campers attended practice and competition sessions three times a day, and some campers wrestled over 10 matches! Wrestlers Bernard Lipscomb from Frankford and Marius Kola from Northeast wrestled exceptionally well, as both went undefeated throughout the camp’s competitions.
Our wrestlers were exposed to teams and wrestlers from all over parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The coaches and counselors noticed our kids’ improvements in focus and perseverance over the course of the camp and were impressed with their effort and enthusiasm. Camp was a great experience and will have our wrestlers motivated to continue to train and look forward to the start of wrestling season in the fall.   
BTSP was able to provide 88 scholarships for our high school student-athletes to attend camp as a result the generosity of our donors.  It is through this generosity that BTSP is able to support individuals and wrestling programs throughout inner city Philadelphia, Camden and Gloucester City in an effort to develop not only solid wrestlers, but more importantly well-adjusted and motivated individuals.  You can make a donation by going to: Donate Now
Next up will be our Middle School campers attending one of two camps at the end of July and the beginning of August that are run by Beat the Streets NYC.  Stay tuned for more updates on Beat the Streets Philadelphia by checking out our website(www.btsphilly.org) or going to our facebook page(http://www.facebook.com/pages/Beat-The-Streets-Philadelphia/125158544187228).

NCAA Makes $25,000 Donation to Beat the Streets Philadelphia

The NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships were held March 17-19, 2011 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA.  Through this event, Beat the Streets Philadelphia was provided with many opportunities to expose our sponsored student-athletes to experiences that will undoubtedly create lifelong memories.  Not only did the NCAA, the MAAC, Rider University and the Local Organizing Committee give us the opportunity to include our young wrestlers in events during the championships, but they also made an extremely generous and meaningful donation to the organization.   The NCAA and the Local Organizing Committee donated $25,000 to support Beat the Streets Philadelphia.  We are extremely thankful and humbled by this contribution which will allow our organization to create many opportunities for hundreds of youth throughout the region.
You can review the official NCAA News Release about the donation by going to the following link:
NCAA Donation Press Release

On Friday March 18, 2011 prior to the semi-finals the NCAA along with members of the Local Organizing Committee presented a check to student-athletes, coaches and staff of Beat the Streets Philadelphia.  It was a moment we will not soon forget as our athletes had the opportunity to walk onto the floor of the arena during this presentation where they received a warm reception from the crowd for their efforts.  Following the presentation, many of our athletes had the privilege of staying in the arena to watch wrestling on one of the greatest stages for our sport.  For many, this was their first time in a major sports arena and for all of our student-athletes, this was the first time they were able to witness the NCAA Wrestling Championships.
Additionally, young wrestlers from Camden Youth Wrestling had the opportunity to lead the parade of All-Americans prior to the finals on Saturday March 19, 2011.  The young student-athletes were able to be on center stage as the All-Americans were applauded for their efforts to reach the podium and achieve life-long goals.  Bill Wallace, the founder of Camden Youth Wrestling as well as Rashaan Hornsby Jr., one of the original team members , were interviewed by the Philadelphia Inquirer about the experience and you can check out the video by going to the following link:

Philadelphia Inquirer Interview with Camden

Beat the Streets Philadelphia will continue to strive to support an environment for our young student-athletes that will encourage each and every one of them to set and achieve goals that were once unattainable.
Beat the Streets Philadelphia is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is supported primarily by generous donors.  Donations to the organization are tax-deductible and can be made by going to the link below:
Donate Now

Beat the Streets Clinic featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer

Beat the Streets Philadelphia sponsored a youth clinic at the Shops at Liberty Place in Center City Philadelphia on Thursday March 11, 2011. The clinic was run by Current University of Pennsylvania Assistant Coach and 2x NCAA Division I Champion Matt Valenti. Kids from Wissahickon Charter School were in attendance for the event. The event would not have been possible without the support of the Philadelphia Sports Congress which is part of the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau. The event was held as a way to promote our efforts throughout the city as well as the activities surround the upcoming NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships which are being hosted in Philadelphia this year.
Check out the article by going to the following link:
Young Grapplers Get Lessons in Life
Beat the Streets Wrestling Philadelphia is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that uses the sport of wrestling to provide a safe and nurturing environment for student-athletes throughout inner city Philadelphia, Camden and the surrounding region.  It is only through the support of our generous donors that we are able to continue creating opportunities for youth throughout the area.  Please consider making a tax deductible donation by going to the following link:
BTS Donation

Beat the Streets sponsors the 1st Annual Philadelphia Youth Wrestling Day

Beat the Streets Wrestling Philadelphia sponsored the 1st Annual Philadelphia Youth Wrestling Day at George Washington High School on Sunday February 20th. All 8 youth teams that are currently sponsored by Beat the Streets Philadelphia brought athletes to the event and over 200 youth wrestlers participated. It was a great day of wrestling and each athlete earned a medal for their participation. The event placed each of the participants in brackets with up to 5 total wrestlers and almost all wrestlers were able to compete in a minimum of 3 matches throughout the day.
Beat the Streets Wrestling Philadelphia is extremely proud of those athletes that participated in the event and those coaches that were key to making the event a huge success. These student-athletes will one day go on to join high school programs throughout the city of Philadelphia and it is our goal to provide a safe and supportive environment so that they can benefit from participation in the sport at all age levels. Not all of the wrestlers came away with a gold medal, but they all came out as winners because of their willingness to step on the mat with an opponent.
Special thanks goes out to the George Washington High School and Youth coaching staffs and wrestlers who were terrific hosts. We would also like to recognize the Philadelphia Department of Recreation for partnering with us to sponsor the event. Our success is very dependent on key partners in the community and we are fortunate enough to have wonderful people and organizations in Philadelphia that have been key factors in our success this season.
Check out the photos from the day by going to the following link:
1st Annual Beat the Streets Philadelphia Youth Wrestling Day Photos
You can also view some video of the day that was taken by a local website that promotes Philadelphia sports.
Additional Video
Beat the Streets Wrestling Philadelphia is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our efforts are supported by the generosity of our donors. If you are interested in making a donation to our organization please visit the following link:
Donate to BTS Philadelphia