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Mensah Stock, Maroulis, Nelson qualify for women’s freestyle semifinals at Senior Worlds in Norway

by Gary Abbott and Joe Wedra, USA Wrestling

Helen Maroulis works for a pin during the 2021 Senior Worlds in Oslo. Photo by Justin Hoch.


OSLO, Norway – Three U.S. women wrestlers from Group Two have advanced to the semifinals at the Senior World Championships on Wednesday morning, and all will compete against opponents from world powerhouse Japan in their next match.


2020 Olympic champion and 2019 World champion Tamyra Mensah Stock, seeded No. 1, won her only match of the session, an 8-0 victory over Anastasia Lavenchuk of Ukraine. Mensah Stock scored four takedowns in the match and was never in danger of allowing any points.


Mensah Stock will battle Rin Miyaji of Japan.in Wednesday night’s semifinals. Miyaji, who won the 2021 All-Japan Invitational, was second in the 2020 Ivan Yarygin Grand Prix.


2016 Olympic champion and 2020 Olympic bronze medalist Helen Maroulis, who came in as the No. 4 seed at 57 kg, won her first two matches handily.


She opened with a pin over Jeannie Kessler of Austria in 2:34. Maroulis opened with a step out point. She added a takedown, powered Kessler to her back and finished off the fall.


In the quarterfinals, Maroulis took out 2021 European silver medalist Veronika Chumikova of the Russian Wrestling Federation, 10-1. Chumikova scored first on a step out, then Maroulis took over. After scoring a slick takedown on a trip, Maroulis ran a bar arm for two exposure points and a 4-1 lead. In the second period, Maroulis scored three unanswered takedowns to finish with her 10-1 victory.


Maroulis will battle Sae Nanjo of Japan in the semifinals. Nanjo was a 2019 U23 World champion, and won Junior World titles in 2017 and 2019. In addition to her two Olympic medals, Maroulis is also a two-time World champion, and has World silver and bronze medals as well.


2017 Junior World champion Maya Nelson, the No. 4 seed, won her first two matches, competing in her first Senior World Championships.


Nelson won her opening bout against Ebru Dagbasi of Turkey, 7-0. Nelson led 2-0, after Daghbasi was placed on the activity clock two different times and did not score. Nelson extended the lead to 3-0 with a step out point. She closed out the win in the final seconds with a powerful four-point takedown.


In the quarterfinals, she won held the edge in a close match against 2021 European bronze medalist Krystsina Sazykina of Belarus, before pinning her with just four seconds left. Sazykina took a 1-0 lead after Nelson was placed on the activity clock and could not score. Nelson answered with a takedown to lead 2-1 at the break. When Nelson forced another step out, the Belarus corner challenged and it was refused, giving her a 4-1 lead. After Sazykina closed it to 4-2 with a step out, she attempted to throw Nelson, who blocked it and dropped her to her back, finishing it off with a pin.


Nelson’s semifinals opponent is Akie Hanai of Japan. Hanai was a 2019 Junior World champion, and placed second in the 2018 U23 World Championships.


2021 Junior World champion Kylie Welker dropped her opening match to the No. 4 seed and 2018 World bronze medalist Buse Cavusoglu Tosun of Turkey, 8-1. In the first period, Welker led 1-0 after Tosun was put on the activity clock and could not score. Welker was in position to score but could not finish some takedowns. Tosun took over in the second period, scoring two two-point takedowns and a four-point takedown


Welker’s hopes to qualify for the repechage remains alive, as Cavusoglu Tosun won her quarterfinals match by pin. Cavusoglu Tosun must win her semifinals match against No. 1 seed Zhamila Bakbergenova of Kazakhstan, a 2020 Asian champion.


Repechage matches were held for the four weight classes in Group Two. At 65 kg, the opponent for Forrest Molinari in Wednesday night’s bronze-medal match was determined, as Mariya Mamashuk of Belarus won her repechage bout by fall and earned the right to face Molinari for a bronze medal.


The semifinals for Group Three begins at 4:45 p.m. local time, followed by the medal matches for Group Two at 6:00 p.m. local time. Oslo is six hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time zone. All of the action is live on FloWrestling.

SENIOR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

at Oslo, Norway, October 6

Women’s Freestyle Group Three semifinal pairings


57 kg

Helen Maroulis (USA) vs Sae Nanjo (Japan)

Anshu (India) vs. Solomiia Vynnyk (Ukraine)


59 kg

Maya Nelson (USA) vs Akei Hanai (Japan)

Bilyana Dudova (Bulgaria) vs. Sarita (India)


68 kg

Tamyra Mensah Stock (USA) vs. Rin Miyaji (Japan)

Khanum Velieva (Russian Wrestling Federation) vs. Meerim Zumanazarova (Kyrgyzstan)


72 kg

Zhamila Bakbergenova (Kazakhstan) vs. Buse Cavusoglu Tosun (Turkey)

Anna Schell (Germany) vs. Masako Furuichi (Japan)

U.S. Women’s Freestyle Group Three results


57 kg – No. 4 seed Helen Maroulis (Rockville, Md./Sunkist Kids)

WIN Jeannie Kessler (Austria), pin 2:34

WIN Veronika Chumikova (Russian Wrestling Federation), 10-1

Semifinals – Vs. Sae Nanjo (Japan)


59 kg – No. 4 seed Maya Nelson (Denver, Colo., Sunkist Kids)

WIN Ebru Dagbasi (Turkey), 7-0

WIN Krystsina Sazykina (Belarus), pin 5:56

Semifinals – Vs. Akie Hanai (Japan)


68 kg – No. 1 seed Tamyra Mensah-Stock (Colorado Springs, Colo./USOPTC/Titan Mercury WC)

WIN Anastasia Lavenchuk (Ukraine), 8-0

Semifinals – Vs. Rin Miyagi (Japan)


72 kg – Kylie Welker (Waterford, Wis./Titan Mercury WC)

LOSS Buse Cavusoglu Tosun (Turkey), 8-1


U.S. women’s freestyle Group Two results


50 kg – No. 1 seed Sarah Hildebrandt (Colorado Springs, Colo./USOPTC/New York AC)

WIN Bohdana Kokozei Yashchuk (Ukraine), tech. fall 10-0, 0:43

WIN Lisa Ersel (Germany), tech. fall 10-0, 1:27

WIN Nadezhda Sokolova (Russian Wrestling Federation), tech. fall 12-1, 5:44

Gold medal finals – Vs. Remina Yoshimoto (Japan)


53 kg – Amy Fearnside (Colorado Springs, Colo./USOPTC/Titan Mercury WC)

LOSS Katarzyna Krawczyk (Poland), tech. fall 10-0


65 kg – Forrest Molinari (Tempe, Ariz./Sunkist Kids)

WIN Enkhjin Tuvshinjarga (Mongolia), pin 2:50

WIN Dinara Kadaeva Salikhova (Russian Wrestling Federation), tech. fall 10-0

WIN Koumba Larroque (France), 3-3

LOSS Miwa Morikawa (Japan), 6-2

Bronze medal match –vs. Mariya Mamashuk (Belarus)


76 kg – No. 1 seed Adeline Gray (Colorado Springs, Colo./USOPTC/New York AC)

WIN Aysegul Ozbege (Turkey), pin 1:17

WIN Kiran (India), pin 2:33

WIN Samar Hamza (Egypt), pin 4:00

Gold medal finals – vs. Epp Maee (Estonia)