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Four American women win medals at world championships

Courtesy USA Wrestling
Team USA won four medals at the world championships Wednesday in women’s freestyle with Macey Kilty (65 kilograms) winning a silver medal and Adeline Gray (76 kg), Helen Maroulis (57 kg) and Sarah Hildebrandt (50 kg) each capturing bronze medals at Stark Arena in Belgrade, Serbia.

Maroulis, Gray and Hildebrandt compete at Olympic weight classes. By winning medals, they all have qualified the United States to compete at their weight class at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. The top five in each of the six women’s freestyle Olympic weight classes qualify their nation to compete in Paris at that weight class.

Kilty had a strong run Tuesday, winning four straight matches to reach the finals. She battled 2022 world champion Nonoka Ozaki of Japan in the finals. Ozaki scored a takedown and was able to turn Kilty four times from par terre to secure a first-period technical fall.

Maroulis scored a clutch takedown late in the match to defeat Anhelina Lysak of Poland, 10-6. Maroulis scored takedowns and turns to lead 6-0, but Lysak hit a big four-point thrown with 40 seconds left to close Maroulis’ lead to 7-6. A Maroulis takedown, and a failed challenge by Poland, gave Maroulis her final three points.

Maroulis, a three-time world champion, has now won seven Senior World medals. Add in her Olympic gold and Olympic bronze, and Maroulis has nine world and Olympic medals.

Gray also had a nice lead on Milaimys Marin Potrille of Cuba, scoring the first six points of the match. Gray extended her lead to 10-2 with 50 seconds left, after a key takedown and turn. Marin scored a late takedown and turn to make the final score, 10-6.

Gray, a six-time world champion, now also has three world bronze medals, giving her nine world medals. Add in her 2020 Olympic silver medal, and Gray has won 10 world and Olympic medals. Gray was able to win a world wrestling medal after giving birth to twins last year, also an amazing achievement.

Hildebrandt was in control throughout her 5-0 decision over Evin Demirhan of Turkey in her bronze-medal bout. Hildebrandt led 3-0 at the break with a takedown and a shot clock point. Hildebrandt added a second-period takedown for the final margin of victory.

Hildebrandt has now won four world medals, two silver medals and two bronze medals. Add in her 2020 Olympic bronze medal, and Hildebrandt has won five world and Olympic medals.

The United States punched two more wrestlers into the medal rounds on Wednesday. 2022 world champion Amit Elor will attempt to win another gold medal after advancing to the finals at 72 kg. Emma Bruntil, competing in her first Senior Worlds, will go for a bronze medal at 68 kg.

Elor was dominant in her semifinals match, scoring a 12-2 technical fall over Kendra Dacher of France in the semifinals. Elor shut out her first two opponents, stopping Nesrin Bas, 6-0, and beating another 2022 World champion, Miwa Morikawa of Japan, 6-0. Elor will battle Davaanasan Enkh Amar of Mongolia in the championship finals on Thursday.

Elor became the first U.S. wrestler to win three world titles in one year in 2022, with Senior, U23 and U20 world titles. She has already won a U20 world title this year and aims to add the Senior World title tomorrow and a U23 world title in October.

Bruntil had a great start, winning three close matches to advance to the semifinals. She won a tight 2-1 match over Individual Neutral Athlete Vusala Parfianovich in the quarterfinals, 2-1. Bruntil was pinned in the semifinals by Delgermaa Enkhsaikhan of Mongolia, 2:45 putting her in a bronze-medal bout.

Bruntil will await the winner of the repechage ladder for her bronze-medal between Emilija Jakovljevic of Serbia, Yelena Shalygina of Kazakhstan and Koumba Larroque of France. Bruntil is in an Olympic weight class, so if she places in the top five, she will qualify the nation for the Paris Olympics as well.

Two other U.S. women competed Wednesday, 2022 world champion Dom Parrish at 53 kg and two-time world silver medalist and Olympian Kayla Miracle at 62 kg. Both lost matches, and their opponent did not reach the finals, making them not eligible for repechage. These are both Olympic weight classes, so the USA will have to qualify them at either the Pan American Olympic qualifier in Mexico, or the World Olympic qualifier in Turkey this spring.

With the four medals won on Wednesday, along with two won on Tuesday, and at least one medal guaranteed by Elor by reaching the finals, the USA will have a minimum of seven medals in women’s freestyle wrestling at this year’s world championships. This matches the record of seven World medals won three previous years (2003, 2021, 2022). If Bruntil gets the bronze medal, the USA would set a new record for world medals won.

The women’s freestyle competition finishes on Thursday, with repechage in the morning and the medal matches. The men’s Greco-Roman competition also begins Thursday with four weight classes.

At Belgrade, Serbia, September 20

Women’s Freestyle
Team results  (after 6 weight classes):
1. Japan, 125 points, 2. United States 100, 3. China 65, 4. Ukraine 38, 5. Mongolia 36

Women’s Freestyle
50 kg
Gold – Yui Susaki (Japan) tech. fall Otgonjargal Dolgorjav (Mongolia), 10-0
Bronze – Ziqi Feng (China) tech. fall Alisson Cardoza Rey (Colombia), 10-0
Bronze – Sarah Hildebrandt (United States) dec. Evin Demirhan (Turkey), 5-0
Olympic playoff – Evin Demirhan (Turkey) dec. Alisson Cardoza Rey (Colombia), 4-1

57 kg
Gold – Tsugumi Sakurai (Japan) dec. Anastasia Nichita (Moldova), 3-2
Bronze – Odunayo Adekuoroye (Nigeria) dec. Elvira Kamaloglu (Turkey), 9-5
Bronze – Helen Maroulis (United States) dec. Anhelina Lysak (Poland), 10-6.
Olympic playoff – Anhelina Lysak (Poland) pin Elvira Kamaloglu (Turkey)

65 kg
Gold – Nonoka Ozaki (Japan) tech. fall Macey Kilty (United States), 10-0
Bronze – Mimi Hristova (Bulgaria) pin Tatsiana Paulava (Individual Neutral Athlete), 1:51
Bronze – Lili (China) dec. Kadriye Aksoy (Turkey), 3-2

76 kg
Gold – Yuka Kagami (Japan) inj dft. over Aiperi Medet Kyzy (Kyrgyzstan), 5:06
Bronze – Tatiana Renteria (Colombia) pin Catalina Axente (Romania), 5:59
Bronze – Adeline Gray (USA) dec. Milaimys Marin Potrille (Cuba), 10-6
Olympic Playoff – Milaimys Marin Potrille (Cuba) pin Catalina Axente (Romania)

Wednesday’s results
Women’s Freestyle Semifinal results
53 kg
Akari Fujinami (Japan) tech. fall Maria Prevolaraki (Greece), 10-0
Vanesa Kaladzinskaya (Individual Neutral Athlete) dec. Antim (UWW), 5-4
62 kg
Sakura Motoki (Japan) dec. Grace Bullen (Norway), 2-1
Aisuluu Tynybekova (Kyrgyzstan) dec. Luisa Niemesch (Germany), 4-2
68 kg
Delgermaa Enkhsaikhan (Mongolia) pin Emma Bruntil (United States), 2:45
Buse Cavusoglu Tosun (Turkey) tech fall Ami Ishii (Japan), 11-1
72 kg
Davaanasan Enkh Amar (Mongolia) dec. Zhamila Bakbergenova (Kazakhstan), 6-2
Amit Elor (United States) tech fall Kendra Dacher (France), 12-2

Thursday’s matches
Women’s Freestyle finals
53 kg – Akari Fujinami (Japan) vs. Vanesa Kaladzinskaya (Individual Neutral Athlete)
62 kg – Sakura Motoki (Japan) vs. Aisuluu Tynybekova (Kyrgyzstan)
68 kg – Delgermaa Enkhsaikhan (Mongolia) vs. Buse Cavusoglu Tosun (Turkey)
72 kg – Davaanasan Enkh Amar (Mongolia) vs. Amit Elor (United States)

U.S. Women’s Freestyle results
50 kg – Sarah Hildebrandt (New York AC/USOPTC), Bronze Medal
WIN Miseon Kwon (Korea), tech fall 10-0
WIN Mariya Stadnik (Azerbaijan, tech fall 14-3
LOSS Otgonjargal Dolgorjav (Mongolia), 7-5
WIN Medal – Evin Demirhan (Turkey) 5-0

57 kg – Helen Maroulis (Sunkist Kids), Bronze medal
WIN Nesmarie Rodriguez (Puerto Rico), pin 1:28
WIN Graciela Sanchez Diaz (Spain), pin 2:13
WIN Zhala Aliyeva (Azerbaijan), 8-3
LOSS Tsugumi Sakurai (Japan), 6-2
WIN Anhelina Lysak (Poland), 10-6

65 kg –Macey Kilty (Sunkist Kids), Silver medal
WIN Valeriia Dondupova Suvorova (Individual Neutral Athlete), tech fall 10-0
WIN Albina Drazhi (Albania), pin 2:28
WIN Mimi Hristova (Bulgaria), 11-2
WIN Tatsiana Paulava (Individual Neutral Athlete), tech fall 10-0
LOSS Nonoka Ozaki (Japan), tech fall 10-0

76 kg –Adeline Gray (New York AC), Bronze medal
WIN Jimin Baek (Korea), tech fall 10-0
WIN Epp Maee (Estonia), tech fall 11-0
LOSS Yuka Kagami (Japan), 4-1
WIN Yuanyuan Huang (China), pin 2:54
WIN Milaimys Marin Potrille (Cuba), 10-6

53 kg – Dominique Parrish (Sunkist Kids), eliminated
LOSS Antim (UWW), 3-2

62 kg – Kayla Miracle (Sunkist Kids), eliminated
WIN Subeen Jo (Korea), tech fall 12-2
LOSS Kriszta Incze (Romania), 6-3

68 kg –Emma Bruntil (Titan Mercury WC/USOPTC) in bronze medal bout
WIN Alexandra Anghel (Romania), 2-2
WIN Feng Zhou (China), 6-3
WIN Vusala Parfianovich (Individual Neutral Athlete), 2-1
LOSS Delgermaa Enkhsaikhan (Mongolia) pin 2:45
Bronze medal – Vs. winner of Emilija Jakovljevic (Serbia), Yelena Shalygina (Kazakhstan), Koumba Larroque (France)

72 kg – Amit Elor (Titan Mercury WC/NYC RTC) in gold medal bout
WIN Nesrin Bas (Turkey), 7-0
WIN Miwa Morikawa (Japan), 6-0
WIN Kendra Dacher (France), tech. fall 12-2
Gold Medal – Vs. Davaanasan Enkh Amar (Mongolia)


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