Six U.S. wrestlers unbeaten after day one of Beach World Series in Constanta, Romania

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Mitch Cook (USA) competing at the Beach World Series in Romania (Photo by courtesy of Mitch Cook)

CONSTANTA, Romania – It was a good first day of action for Team USA at the UWW Beach World Series at Neversea Beach on Thursday, as six U.S. Senior wrestlers secured 2-0 records in their Group competition.

Unbeaten through day one were men’s Beach wrestlers Mitch Cook of Illinois (70 kg), Justin Benjamin of Illinois (70 kg), Ty Loethen of Missouri (80 kg), Tyson Beauperthuy of Colorado (90 kg) and Terrence Zaleski of Pennsylvania (90 kg), as well as women’s Beach wrestler Eliana Bommarito of Michigan (Over 70 kg).

If these six U.S. athletes win their final Group match on Friday morning, they will win their Group and advance to the championship bracket semifinals on Friday afternoon.

Loethen, who entered with a No. 5 Beach World Series ranking at 80 kg for the season, powered through his first two Group A bouts, beating Denis Ioan Chirica of Romania, 3-2 and pinning USA teammate Wayne LaMont in 33 seconds. He can clinch a spot in the semifinals with a win over Radu Huhulea of Romania.

Cook, who held a No. 9 Beach World Series ranking at 70 kg coming into the event, opened with a huge win, defeating No. 3 ranked Yonus Coskun of Turkey, 3-1. He followed with a 3-1 win over U.S. Senior Beach Nationals champion Jamel Johnson. Cook can reach the semifinals with a win over Valentin Seimetz of Germany.

Bommarito, with a No. 11 Beach World Series ranking at Over 70 kg previously, opened with a 3-1 win over USA teammate Katelyn Lewis. She had a huge win in round two, pinning No. 2 ranked Stefania Zacheila of Greece in 20 seconds. Bommarito can win Group B with a win over No. 3 ranked Liudmyla Pavlovets Tychnyna of Ukraine on Friday morning.

Beauperthuy, a 2023 U.S. Senior Beach Nationals champion competing in his first World Series event, had a pair of wins on Thursday, stopping Daniel Marian Sandu of Romania, 3-0 and Pavel Graur of Moldova, 3-2. His final Group A match on Friday is against Oleksei Boruta of Ukraine.

Benjamin, also in his first UWW Beach World Series competition, had wins over Georgios Tsaknakis of Greece, 3-0 and a pin in 3:00 over Kevin Gremm of Germany. His final Group A match is against Mahmut Ozkaya of Turkey on Friday morning.

Zaleski opened with two Group A wins, claiming 3-0 decisions over Eugeniu Mihalcean of Moldova and Vasile Minzala of Romania. His final Group A bout is against No. 2 ranked Ibrahim Yusubov of Azerbaijan.

All six of the undefeated USA wrestlers could still reach the semifinals if they lose on Friday morning, but that would entirely depend upon the results of other athletes in their weight class. A victory on Friday morning guarantees that they will advance.

The USA had 13 athletes competing on Thursday, with none of the seven other athletes winning a bout on Thursday. Three U.S. wrestlers were defeated in Knockout Matches and eliminated, unable to move into the Group brackets.

With six athletes unbeaten after the first day, the United States had its best-ever opening day in history at a Senior Beach World Series event.

The United States has never won a Senior-level Beach Wrestling international gold medal, going back to 2007 when the USA began to send athletes to United World Wrestling Beach competitions. There were Senior World Championships from 2007-2018, and the Beach World Series was launched in 2019. The USA has won 17 Senior Beach medals, including four silver medals and 13 bronze medals.

The Beach World Series is being broadcast live on FloWrestling.

Session times on Friday are 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. local time. Constanta is seven hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time zone


At Constanta, Romania, September 7-8

U.S. Beach World Series results

Senior Men:

70 kg: Mitch Cook, Orland Park, Ill.

Group B

WIN Yonus Coskun (Turkey), 3-1 0:58

WIN Jamel Johnson (USA), 3-1, 1:07

Valentin Seimetz (Germany)  

70 kg: Jamel Johnson, Jacksonville, N.C.

Group B

LOSS Valentin Seimetz (Germany), pin 2:52

LOSS Mitch Cook (USA), 3-1, 1:07

Yunus Coskun (Turkey)

70 kg: Justin Benjamin, St. Charles, Ill.

Group A

WIN Daniel Marian Sandu (Romania), 3-0 2:47

WIN Pavel Graur (Moldova), 3-2 2:39

Oleksei Boruta (Ukraine)

80 kg: Ty Loethen, Columbia, Mo.

Group A

WIN Denis Ioan Chirica (Romania), 3-2, 2:51

WIN Wayne LaMont (USA), pin 0:33

Radu Huhulea (Romania)

80 kg: Wayne Lamont, Corum, N.Y.

Group A

LOSS Radu Huhulea (Romania), 3-0, 0:49

LOSS Ty Loethen (USA), pin 0:33

Denis Ion Cirica (Romania)

90 kg: Tyson Beauperthuy, Colorado Springs, Colo.

Group B

WIN Georgios Tsaknakis (Greece), 3-0, 2:40

WIN Kevin Gremm (Germany), pin 3:00

Mahmut Ozkaya (Turkey)

90 kg: Terrence Zaleski, Mechanicsburg, Pa.

Group A

WIN Eugeniu Mihalcean (Moldova), 3-0, 1:24

WIN Vasile Minzala (Romania), 3-0, 1:01

Ibrahim Yusubov (Azerbaijan)

Over 90 kg: Mingo Grant, Baltimore, Md.

Knockout Match

LOSS Nicolae Stratulat (Moldova), 3-0, 2:23

Senior Women:

50 kg: Halley Wheeler, Bakersfield, N.C.

Group A

LOSS Emine Cataloglu (Turkey), 3-0, 0:20

Claudia Cabrera (Argentina), 3-0, 0:22

Nicoleta Bajan (Romania)

60 kg: Josephine Wearmouth, Saint Charles, Iowa

Knockout Match

LOSS Gabriela Cuc (Romania), pin 0:09

60 kg: Taylor Colangelo, Peoria, Ariz.

Knockout Match

LOSS Andrea Grasruck (Germany), 3-0, 1:21

+70 kg: Eliana Bommarito, Brighton, Mich.

Group B

WIN Katelyn Lewis (USA), 3-1, 0:36

WIN Stefania Zacheila (Greece), pin 0:20

Liudmyla Pavlovets Tychnyna (Ukraine)

+70 kg: Katelyn Lewis, Great Falls, Mont.

LOSS Eliana Bommarito (USA), 3-1. 0:36

LOSS Liudmyla Pavlovets Tychnyna (Ukraine), 3-0, 0:30

Stefania Zacheila (Greece)

Remaining Constanta Beach World Series Schedule

Friday, September 8

10:00 a.m. – noon – Group Rounds

4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. – Elimination Rounds and Finals

*Constanta is seven hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time zone