Returning World Team members Conder, Winchester, Molinari win U.S. Open titles in women's wrestling

Whitney Conder claimed the U.S. Open title at 50 kilograms (Photo/John Sachs,

LAS VEGAS -- Three returning U.S. World Team members in women's wrestling, Whitney Conder, Jacarra Winchester and Forrest Molinari, punched their tickets to Final X by winning U.S. Open titles on Friday at South Point Arena in Las Vegas.

Conder, a four-time World Team member, shut out Erin Golston 7-0 in the finals at 50 kilograms, avenging a loss from earlier this season. Conder used a four-point takedown in the first period to open up the scoring. She would add another takedown with just over a minute and half remaining.

Winchester, a world fifth-place finisher last year, cruised to a 10-0 technical fall in the finals over Areana Villaescusa at 55 kilograms.

Molinari trailed 1-0 at the break in the 65-kilogram finals against 2017 Junior world champion Maya Nelson before scoring five unanswered points in the second period to claim a 5-1 victory.

Alli Ragan, a two-time world silver medalist, capped a dominant tournament with a 10-0 technical fall over Abigail Nette in the finals at 59 kilograms.

Becka Leathers, a 2017 world bronze medalist, came back late to defeat Jenna Burkert to win the title at 57 kilograms. Leathers scored a takedown with 30 seconds left to grab a 4-3 lead. She would extend her lead with a gut wrench turn and hold on to win by two.

Another 2018 Final X participant, Kayla Miracle, won her third U.S. Open title in dominant fashion, beating Desiree Zavala 10-0 in the finals at 62 kilograms.

Two-time WCWA All-American Precious Bell picked up the lone fall in the finals. Bell built an 8-2 lead on Hannah Gladden in the finals at 76 kilograms before locking up a cradle and getting a fall with just over a minute thirty remaining in the match.

Tiare Ikei opened the finals in women's wrestling with a 14-4 technical fall over Katherine Shai at 53 kilograms. Ikea trailed 4-2 after the opening period, but broke the match open in the second period on the strength of a four-point move, which she followed up with a trapped-arm gut wrench.

Randi Beltz rolled to a 10-1 victory in the finals over Jayden Laurent at 68 kilograms. Beltz led 6-0 at the break and extended her lead in the second period to win by nine.

Alyvia Fiske earned a spot in Final X at 72 kilograms by narrowly defeating Victoria Francis 5-4.

Finals results:
50 kilograms: Whitney Conder dec. Erin Golston, 7-0
53 kilograms: Tiare Ikei tech. fall Katherine Shai, 14-4 3:57
55 kilograms: Jacarra Winchester tech. fall Areana Villaescusa, 10-0 2:50
57 kilograms: Becka Leathers dec. Jenna Burkert, 7-5
59 kilograms: Alli Ragan tech. fall Abby Nette, 10-0 4:32
62 kilograms: Kayla Miracle tech. fall Desiree Zavala, 10-0 2:14
65 kilograms: Forrest Molinari dec. Maya Nelson, 5-1
68 kilograms: Randi Beltz dec. Jayden Laurent, 10-1
72 kilograms: Alyvia Fiske dec. Victoria Francis, 5-4


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