|Downing, Smith advance to quarterfinals at World Wrestling Championships; Durlacher loses in his second match|
By Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
Two U.S. women freestyle wrestlers, Katie Downing (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) at 67 kg/ 147.5 lbs. and Iris Smith (Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) at 72 kg/158.75 lbs. won their morning matches and advances to the quarterfinals at the World Wrestling Championships in Budapest, Hungary, September 30.
Downing opened the tournament by pinning both opponents in the first period, putting away Manuela Barzu of Romania in 1:03 and Stavroula Zygouri of Greece in 1:39.
Downing scored on Barzu by locking up a cradle, driving her to her back for exposure points and a hold, then adjusting for the fall. Against Zygouri, the action heated up with an active exchange. Zygouri received exposure points, but Downing came out on top, putting Zygouri to her back, earning an addition hold point and then pinning her. Zygouri was fourth in the 2004 Olympic Games competing at 63 kg/138.75 pounds.
In the quarterfinals, Downing next faces Canada's Martine Dugrenier, who she has competed against in North America. Dugrenier won the last meeting between the two athletes. Smith opened with an impressive 3-1, 1-0 victory over Stanka Zlateva of Bulgaria, who was fourth in the 2003 World Championships. She fell behind 1-0, but then scored three straight one-point moves to take the opening period. In the second period, Smith scored a slide-by takedown for the only point of the period.
In the quarterfinals, Smith will face Agnieszka Wierczczek of Poland, an opponent she has never faced. The men's Greco-Roman tournament began today with one weight class, 55 kg/121 lbs. The U.S. athlete, Lindsey Durlacher (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC) opened with a victory, but was defeated in the second round by the reigning Olympic champion.
Durlacher stopped Roberto Pira of Italy, 3-2, 5-1 in the first round. In the opening period, Durlacher fell behind 2-0 when he was down in the clinch position and was hit for a leg foul for a two-point penalty. Duracher scored a takedown later in that 30 second frame to cut the lead to 2-1. When Durlacher was in the top position from the clinch, Pira was penalized two points on a leg foul, and Durlacher won the period 3-2.
In the second period, Durlacher opened up the action, with a two-point bear hug throw and a one point for the hold from the standing position. He added a two-point exposure from the top position in the clinch to make it 5-0. Pira's reversal from the second clinch was worth one point, but was too little, too late.
In the second round, Durlacher drew the hometown hero, 2004 Olympic champion Istvan Majoros of Hungary. A large crowd has come out to support their Olympic champion, who was pictured on all the posters and promotions for the tournament. Majoros scored a 5-0, 1-1 win over Durlacher.
In the first period, no points were scored on the feet. Durlacher was in the top position, and Majoros scored a reversal with just one second left in the 30-second period for two points, and a one-point hold. Trailing 3-0, Durlacher was on bottom, and Majoros scored two more points on a gutwrench.
In the second period, no takedowns were scored in the standing position. Durlacher was on top in the first clinch and could not score, and was penalized one point and a caution. When Majoros was on top in the second clinch, he also could not score and was hit for a caution and a point. Majoros won the period, because he scored the last point in the period.
Majoros must advance to the gold-medal match in order for Durlacher to be eligible for the wrestleback rounds for the bronze medal.