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Mortimer beats Golston to reach Senior Nationals finals, top seeds Gomez and Hedrick also in women’s finals

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Sage Mortimer scores a takedown at 50 kg at the Senior Nationals. (Photo by Tony Rotundo, Wrestlers Are Warriors)

FORT WORTH, Texas – The championship finals have been set in three women’s freestyle weight classes at the 2023 Senior Nationals, 50 kg, 53 kg and 57 kg.


Powering to the 50 kg finals was college star Sage Mortimer, the No. 4 seed, who tossed and pinned No. 1 seed Erin Golston in 2:50 in the semifinals. Golston jumped to a 3-0 lead in the bout, but Mortimer came back strong to get the fall. Mortimer, who starred for two years at King, has transferred to the new program being created at Grand Valley State.


Mortimer will battle No. 6 seed Samara Chavez in the 50 kg finals, with a fall over Kaelani Shufeldt in 47 seconds. They were teammates at King, and Mortimer won a wild 12-10 bout over Chavez at the Bill Farrell Memorial earlier this fall.  


The No. 1 seeds in the other two weight classes were able to advance to the finals, Katie Gomez at 53 kg and Alex Hedrick at 57 kg.


Gomez won a tight 6-6 criteria decision over 2016 Olympian Haley Augello in the semifinals. Gomez was a 2023 Final X runner-up. She will face No. 7 seed Vayle Baker in the finals, after Baker pinned the No. 3 seed Areana Villaescusa in the other semifinals.


Hedrick was in command in the semifinals with an 11-0 technical fall over Cristelle Rodriguez. Her opponent in the finals, No. 2 seed Amanda Martinez, was also a semifinal winner by technical fall, beating young Shelby Moore, 10-0.


By winning their semifinal matches, the six finalist women have clinched a berth in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Wrestling at Penn State, April 19-20. The top five finishers in each weight class punch their ticket to Penn State.  


The championship finals in 50 kg, 53 kg and 57 kg are set for 7:00 p.m. on Saturday night, alongside the finals for all six Greco-Roman weight classes. (See separate article on Greco-Roman action). Earlier in the day on Saturday, the three remaining women’s weight classes will compete through the semifinals, 62 kg, 68 kg and 76 kg.


All of the action is live on FloWrestling.


SENIOR NATIONALS

At Fort Worth, Texas, December 15


Women’s freestyle finals pairings

50 kg - Sage Mortimer (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) vs. Samara Chavez (Team Tornado Wrestling Club)

53 kg - Katie Gomez (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) vs. Vayle Baker (West Point Wrestling Club)

57 kg - Alexandra Hedrick (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) vs. Amanda Martinez (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club)


Women’s freestyle semifinal results

50 kg

Sage Mortimer (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) pin Erin Golston (New York Athletic Club), 2:50

Samara Chavez (Team Tornado Wrestling Club) pin Kaelani Shufeldt (California), 0:47


53 kg

Katie Gomez (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) dec. Haley Augello (Izzy Style Wrestling), 6-6

Vayle Baker (West Point Wrestling Club) pin Areana Villaescusa (Army (WCAP), 1:53


57 kg

Alexandra Hedrick (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) tech fall Cristelle Rodriguez (Tiger Wrestling Club), 11-0Amanda Martinez (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) tech fall Shelby Moore (Bearcat Wrestling Club), 10-0

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