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Mensah Stock wins two matches to advance to semifinals

Tamyra Mensah Stock won her first two matches at the Olympics to advance to the semifinals in freestyle. (Tony Rotundo photo courtesy United World Wrestling)

American wrestler Tamyra Mensah Stock was dominant in her first two matches at 68 kilograms (149 pounds) at the Olympics in Japan on Monday to advance to the semifinals in women’s freestyle. Mensah-Stock advanced with a pair of technical falls.

Mensah Stock will battle 2018 world champion Alla Cherkasova of Ukraine in the semifinals round, which will be held at 6:15 p.m. tonight in Japan (5:15 a.m. U.S. Eastern time zone). The match will be on the Olympic Channel.

Mensah Stock opened up with power and poise against 2016 Olympic champion and 2017 world champion Sara Dosho of Japan, getting a 10-0 first-period technical fall. Mensah Stock opened with a takedown and ankle lace for a 4-0 lead. She added a blast double takedown to make it 6-0 and two more ankle lace turns stretched it to the 10-0 technical fall.

Dosho was fifth at the 2019 Senior Worlds, where Mensah-Stock defeated her 10-1 in the quarterfinals.

Her next opponent was two-time world medalist Feng Zhou of China, who also was unable to stop the powerful Mensah Stock’s offense in another 10-0 technical fall. In this match, Mensah Stock scored five straight takedowns, including three in the first period and two in the second period. Included were some powerful blast double legs for which Zhou had no ability to defend.

Mensah Stock was a 2019 world champion in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, and also won a bronze medal in 2018 at the world championships. Mensah Stock won the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials, but did not compete in Rio de Janeiro because the U.S. did not qualify her weight class for the Games. She was a two-time WCWA national champion for Wayland Baptist University, and is originally from Katy, Texas.

Greco Roman
Hancock falls in quarterfinals, Hafizov drops repechage bout
G’Angelo Hancock (Colorado Springs, Colo) had a 1-1 record at 97 kg (213 pounds) in Greco-Roman at the Olympic Games, losing a close quarterfinals bout.

Hancock opened up with confidence and power, defeating 2018 world bronze medalist Mihail Kajaia of Serbia, 5-1. Hancock got his first point when Kajaia was hit with passivity, and followed with two gut wrench turns for a 5-0 lead at the break. In the second period, when Hancock got the passivity penalty to give up one point, Kajaia was not able to turn Hancock in par terre.

Hancock dropped a razor close 4-3 decision in the quarterfinals to No. 4 seed Tadeusz Michalik of Poland.

The first point of the match went to Hancock, when Michalik was hit for passivity. Hancock was unable to turn him from the top position, and the 1-0 lead held through the break. In the second period, Hancock was hit for passivity, knotting the score at 1-1. Hancock defended and got to his feet, then Michalik forced a step out on a scramble on the edge to make it 2-1. The USA corner challenged the call, but it was denied, giving Michalik a 3-1 lead. Hancock forced a step out, closing it to 3-2, but Michalik responded with a stepout point of his own to stretch it to 4-2. Late in the period, Hancock forced a stepout to make it 4-3, but was not able to get another score before time ran out.

Michalik advances to Monday night’s semifinals to face No. 1 seed and world champion Musa Evloev of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC). Michalik must defeat Evloev in order for Hancock to be pulled back into Tuesday’s repechage.

Completing his Olympic competition Monday was two-time Olympian Ildar Hafizov (Colorado Springs, Colo.) at 60 kg, who finished with an 0-2 record.

Hafizov dropped a 7-1 decision to 2018 world champion Sergey Emelin of ROC (Russian Olympic Committee) in the repechage match at 60 kg (132 pounds). Hafizov led 1-0 at the break, after Emelin was hit for a passivity point. Hafizov was unable to turn Emelin in par terre. In the second period, after Hafizov was penalized a passivity point, Emelin was able to execute three gut wrench turns to secure his seven points. Hafizov could not score on his feet in the final portion of the bout. Emelin will face Victor Ciobanu of Moldova in a bronze-medal match.

Hafizov had lost in his opening match to Pan American champion Luis Orta Sanchez of Cuba, but was drawn into repechage after Sanchez powered his way into the gold-medal finals.

Content from USA Wrestling used in preparing this report.

U.S. results
Women’s freestyle
68 kg – Tamyra Mensah Stock (Colorado Springs, Colo)
WIN Sara Dosho (Japan), tech, fall 10-0
WIN Feng Zhou (China), tech. fall 10-0
Semifinals – Alla Cherkasova (Ukraine)

60 kg – Ildar Hafizov (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
LOSS Luis Orta Sanchez (Cuba), 5-0
LOSS Sergey Emelin (ROC), 7-1

97 kg – G’Angelo Hancock (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
WIN Mihail Kajaia (Serbia), 7-1
LOSS Tadeusz Michalik (Poland), 4-3

NBC’s Olympic wrestling telecast schedule

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