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  • Photo: Kostadin Andonov

    Photo: Kostadin Andonov

    Kilty Makes Finals; Men's Freestyle Team Claims Title

    In her first Senior World team appearance, Macey Kilty was not phased at all and cruised her way into the world finals at 65 kg. Of the four women whose tournaments started on Tuesday, Kilty is the only one who advanced to Wednesday’s gold medal matches. 

    On paper, Kilty’s toughest test was slated to come in the quarterfinals against Bulgaria’s Mimi Hristova, a fifth-place finisher at each of the last two World Championships and a European Champion earlier this year. While technically it was her stiffest competition, Kilty still prevailed 11-2. That was the only of her four matches that went the full six minutes. 

    To clinch her spot in the gold medal finals, Kilty needed two and a half minutes to tech Tatsiana Paulava (AIN - Belarus). Kilty got on the scoreboard with a takedown from a snapdown and go-behind. From there, Kilty patiently worked a lace and got three turns to bring her lead to 8-0. Shortly after, Kilty converted a double leg at the edge to push the score into match termination criteria at 10-0. 

    Tuesday also marked the final day of competition in men’s freestyle and the United States took the team title for the second straight year. Seven of the ten team members won medals, led by golds from Vito Arujau (61 kg), Zain Retherford (70 kg), and David Taylor (86 kg). Iran was a distant second with four medals including one gold. 

    The men’s freestyle team also earned Olympic qualification at four weights (74/86/97/125 kg). 

    The final member of the men’s freestyle team took the mat Tuesday, albeit very briefly. After injury defaulting out of his semifinal match with 20-year-old sensation, Akhmed Tazhudinov (Bahrain), Abdulrashid Sadualev (AIN - Russia) did not weigh in and forfeited a bronze medal match to Kyle Snyder. That marked the ninth world/Olympic medal for Snyder. He’s made the podium in every Senior World/Olympic he has entered. 

    Medals were also awarded for the first time this tournament in women’s freestyle and the American team grabbed medals in both of the weight classes contested. Yesterday, Jacarra Winchester secured a place in the 55 kg gold medal match opposite fellow world champion Haruna Okuno. Okuno methodically scored on Winchester earlier and fended off frantic attacks from Winchester late in the bout to take a 4-2 victory. Winchester’s silver medal represented the second career medal for the California native. 

    The other American who came away with a medal on Tuesday was Jennifer Page at 59 kg. Page was in her first Senior World event and found her way onto the team by dropping a weight after losing at the US Open. Page deftly fought off a single-leg attack from Azerbaijan’s Alyona Kolesnik to get a set of exposure points on the ensuing flurry. Later in the first period, Kolesnik took a half-hearted shot attack and was met with a vicious pancake from Page. With her opponent in danger, Page seized the moment and got the fall. 

    Three other past world medalists started their tournaments on Tuesday, Sarah Hildebrandt (50 kg), Helen Maroulis (57 kg), and Adeline Gray (76 kg); however, each was defeated at one point during the tournament. Hildebrandt and Maroulis both lost to the same opponents that beat them in the 2022 tournament in the semifinals. Each will drop down to wrestle in a bronze medal match and has the opportunity to qualify their weight for the Paris Olympics.

    Gray was shut down in the quarterfinals but got pulled back into repechage when Japan’s Yuka Kagami made the finals. She’ll need to win two bouts to earn a bronze medal. 

    Tomorrow, the final four women’s freestyle team members will get their tournaments underway. 

    Also, of note for American fans, Northwestern and Rutgers All-American Sebastian Rivera (Puerto Rico) advanced to the 65 kg men’s freestyle finals in dramatic fashion Monday. Rivera was defeated 11-0 by Iszmail Musakaev (Hungary) in the gold medal match, 11-0. Rivera did secure a spot at the 2024 Olympics with his finish. 

    Final Results

    55 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Gold Medal Match: Haruna Okuno (Japan) over Jacarra Winchester (USA)  4-2

    Bronze Medal Match: Mariana Dragutan (Moldova) over Karla Godinez Gonzalez (Canada)  3-2

    Bronze Medal Match: Anastasia Blayvas (Germany) over Neha Sharma (UWW - India)  2-2


    59 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Gold Medal Match: Qi Zhang (China) over Yulia Tkach (Ukraine)  4-1

    Bronze Medal Match: Jennifer Page (USA) over Alyona Kolesnik (Azerbaijan)  Fall 1:40

    Bronze Medal Match: Othelie Hoeie (Norway) over Elena Brugger (Germany)  5-1


    65 kg Men’s Freestyle

    Gold Medal Match: Iszmail Musukaev (Hungary) over Sebastian Rivera (Puerto Rico)  11-0

    Bronze Medal Match: Shamil Mamedov (AIN - Russia) over Rahman Amouzadkhalili (Iran)  8-6

    Bronze Medal Match: Vazgen Tevanyan (Armenia) over Maxim Sacultan (Moldova)  5-1


    Olympic Quota Wrestle-Off: Rahman Amouzadkhalili (Iran) over Maxim Sacultan (Moldova)  10-0


    97 kg Men’s Freestyle

    Gold Medal Match: Akhmed Tazhudinov (Bahrain) over Magomedkhan Magomedov (Azerbaijan)  Fall 2:50

    Bronze Medal Match: Kyle Snyder (USA) over Abdulrashid Sadulaev (AIN - Russia)  FFT

    Bronze Medal Match: Givi Matcharasvhili (Georgia) over Ibrahim Cift (Turkey)  6-2


    Olympic Quota Wrestle-Off: Ibrahim Cift (Turkey) over Abdulrashid Sadulaev (AIN - Russia)  FFT


    American Results

    50 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Round of 16: Sarah Hildebrandt (USA) over Miseon Kwon (South Korea)  10-0

    Quarterfinals: Sarah Hildebrandt (USA) over  Mariya Stadnik (Azerbaijan)  14-3

    Semifinals: Otgonjargal Dolgorjav (Mongolia) over Sarah Hildebrandt (USA)  7-5

    55 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Gold Medal Match: Haruna Okuno (Japan) over Jacarra Winchester  4-2

    57 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Qualification: Helen Maroulis (USA) over Nes Rodriguez (Puerto Rico)  10-0

    Round of 16: Helen Maroulis (USA) over Graciela Sanchez Dias (Spain)  Fall 1:14

    Quarterfinals: Helen Maroulis (USA) over Zhala Aliyev (Azerbaijan)  8-3

    Semifinals: Tsugumi Sakurai (Japan) over Helen Maroulis (USA)  6-0

    59 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Bronze Medal Match: Jennifer Page over Alyona Kolesnik (Azerbaijan)  Fall 1:40

    65 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Qualification: Macey Kilty (USA) over Valeriia Dondupova-Suvorova (AIN - Russia)  10-0

    Round of 16: Macey Kilty (USA) over Albina Drazhi (Albania)  Fall 2:28

    Quarterfinals: Macey Kilty (USA) over Mimi Hristova (Bulgaria)  11-2

    Semifinals: Macey Kilty (USA) over Tatsiana Paulava (AIN - Belarus)  10-0

    76 kg Women’s Freestyle

    Qualification: Adeline Gray (USA) over Jimin Baek (South Korea)  10-0

    Round of 16: Adeline Gray (USA) over Epp Mae (Estonia)  11-0

    Quarterfinals: Yuka Kagami (Japan) over Adeline Gray (USA)  4-1

    97 kg Men’s Freestyle

    Repechage: Kyle Snyder (USA) over Magomed Ibragimov (Uzbekistan)  10-6

    Bronze Medal Match: Kyle Snyder (USA) over  Abdulrashid Sadulaev (AIN - Russia)  FFT

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