Taylorsville US Champion denied Olympic dream again

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Tom Kirkland reporting from Las Vegas

Taylorsville US Champion denied Olympic dream again

Four years ago in Indianapolis, Taylorsville's Justin Ruiz lost in the Greco Roman Wrestling 96 kg finals at the United States Olympic Trials. He was denied his Olympic dream one match from Athens.

Sunday in Las Vegas, Ruiz felt an even greater devastation. The five-time U.S. National Champion and top-seed went down to defeat in a razor-close match, again in the finals of the U.S. Olympic Trials. He was one match from a trip to Beijing.

"I gave it everything I had. It's very hard to deal with now. I obviously wanted to win very badly," he said.

Taylorsville US Champion denied Olympic dream again

Twenty-five of Ruiz' family and friends cheered him on but also left deeply disappointed.

"He says he'll try again in four years", said Justin's mother, Carrie. "Maybe the third time will be the charm."

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