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Olympic silver medalist Sara McMann looking strong at U.S. Open



Sara McMann rolled to a quarterfinal win on Friday night in Cleveland. Larry Slater photo.

CLEVELAND " Sara McMann can’t stop smiling right now.

She’s the proud mother of a beautiful 1-year-old daughter, and she’s enjoying her training in mixed martial arts and wrestling.

The Olympic and World silver medalist showed she is still a force in rolling to a technical fall win over Tessa Plana in the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open on Friday night at Cleveland State’s Wolstein Center.

McMann now advances to Saturday’s semifinals against Pi’ikea Kalalau in women’s freestyle at 63 kg/138.75 lbs.

“I felt really good out there " it was probably one of my best first-round matches ever,” McMann said. “Right now, this is for fun. I like wrestling and I like competition. I’m excited to get some good competition in here.”

Women’s freestyle and Greco-Roman quarterfinals were contested on Friday night. The freestyle qualifying tournament was held earlier in the day Friday.

Freestyle wrestling starts at 10 a.m. Saturday. The semifinals in freestyle, Greco-Roman and women’s freestyle are scheduled for noon Eastern Time in Cleveland.

McMann is wrestling competitively for the first time since she won the Sunkist Kids International Open in October. She won a title at the World Grappling Championships in December.

McMann said she has not decided if she will compete in June’s World Team Trials in Council Bluffs, Iowa. She’s hoping to start competing in mixed martial arts.

“I’m just competing because I love to compete,” she said. “We’ll just have to see what happens with my schedule. I wasn’t sure I would even want to compete anymore after I had my baby. I thought I would be totally engrossed in motherhood. I love being a mom, but I want her to be involved in this culture and be around sports as well.”

The Greco-Roman semifinalists were led by World bronze medalist Justin Ruiz at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. and Olympian Spenser Mango at 55 kg/121 lbs.

Ruiz will face past World Team member Jake Clark in the semifinals. Clark is wrestling up a weight class. Mango will meet Ohio State All-American Nikko Triggas.

Another interesting battle in the semis involves veteran World Team member Faruk Sahin against FILA Junior Nationals champion Ellis Coleman at 66 kg/145.5 lbs.

GRECO-ROMAN SEMIFINAL PAIRINGS

55 kg/121 lbs.
Spenser Mango (New York AC) vs. Nikko Triggas (Ohio RTC)
Jermaine Hodge (U.S. Army) vs. Paul Tellgren (Minnesota Storm)

60 kg/132 lbs.
Jeremiah Davis (U.S. Army) vs. Chad Vandiver (Sunkist Kids)
Donovan Depatto (U.S. Marines) vs. Nathan Piasecki (U.S. Army)

66 kg/145.5 lbs.
Faruk Sahin (U.S. Army) vs. Ellis Coleman (New York AC)
Ben Sanchez (USOEC) vs. Glenn Garrison (U.S. Army)

74 kg/163 lbs.
Jake Fisher (New York AC) vs. James Johnson (U.S. Army)
Jess Hargrave (U.S. Army) vs. Andrew Bisek (Minnesota Storm)

84 kg/185 lbs.
Chas Betts (Minnesota Storm) vs. Talan Knox (Sunkist Kids)
Travis Rutt (Badger WC) vs. Cheney Haight (New York AC)

96 kg/211.5 lbs.
Justin Ruiz (New York AC) vs. Jacob Clark (U.S. Air Force)
John Lorenz (U.S. Army) vs. Philip Hard (U.S. Marine Corps)

120 kg/264.5 lbs.
Joe Rizqallah (Maverick WC) vs. Akil Patterson (New York AC)
Tim Taylor (U.S. Army) vs. Brandon Rupp (New York AC)

WOMEN’S FREESTYLE SEMIFINAL PAIRINGS

48 kg/105.5 lbs.
Alyssa Lampe (Sunkist Kids) vs. Victoria Anthony (New York AC)
Sara Fulp-Allen (New York AC) vs. Mary Kelly (New York AC)

51 kg/112.25 lbs.
Jessica Medina (Sunkist Kids) vs. Joey Miller (Gator WC)
Gabrielle Henry (Cumberlands) vs. Amy Whitbeck (New York AC)

55 kg/121 lbs.
Tatiana Padilla (Sunkist Kids) vs. Whitney Conder (Gator WC)
Natasha Umemoto (Sunkist Kids) vs. Helen Maroulis (New York AC)

59 kg/130 lbs.
Deanna Rix (Sunkist Kids) vs. Othella Lucas (U.S. Army)
Leigh Jaynes (New York AC) vs. Kelsey Campbell (Sunkist Kids)

63 kg/138.75 lbs.
Elena Pirozhkova (Gator WC) vs. Veronica Carlson (New York AC)
Pi’ikea Kalalau (Team Hawaii) vs. Sara McMann (Sunkist Kids)

67 kg/147.5 lbs.
Christen Paysee (Cumberlands) vs. Ahnjahlee Akuna (USOEC)
Britteny Roberts (Gator WC) vs. Erin Clodgo (Sunkist Kids)

72 kg/158.5 lbs.
Iris Smith (U.S. Army) vs. Donna Rosen (Unattached)
Melissa Simmons (Gator WC) vs. Stephany Lee (Sunkist Kids)
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