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Cook goes 2-1 at 70 kg in Beach World Series in France; Macaluso and White drop their Friday matches

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Mitchell Cook, Laura White and Mia Macaluso of the USA at the Beach World Series event in France.

Mitchell Cook, Laura White and Mia Macaluso of the USA at the Beach World Series event in France. Photo courtesy of Mitchell Cook, Laura White and Mia Macaluso.

SAINT LAURENT DU VAR, France – Three U.S. Senior-level athletes competed today on Cousteau Beach on day one of the Beach World Series event.

Mitchell Cook (Orland Park, Ill./Natural Athlete WC) won two of his three matches at 70 kg in the men’s division, and enters Saturday’s morning action, where pool competition will be completed, with a chance to advance to the semifinal round on Saturday afternoon.

Cook had to win a knockout match to earn his spot in Group A. He quickly pinned Clement LaMothe of France in five seconds to advance into pool play. In his first Group A round robin match, he secured a 3-2 decision over Carlos Alvarez Iglesias of Spain in 1:19. He was defeated in his second Group A match on Friday afternoon, falling to Stefan Ionut Coman of Romania, 3-0 in 45 seconds. Coman is a current Senior level freestyle wrestler, who has competed in age-group World events for Romania.

On Saturday morning, Cook completes his Group A competition with a match against Yunus Coskun of Turkey. A victory might help Cook advance to the semifinals later on Saturday. The top two in Group A and the top two in Group B will compete in the semifinal round. Coscun was sixth at the most recent Beach World Series event in Spain.

Cook placed second at the 2022 U.S. Beach National Championships at 70 kg. He wrestled in the Beach World Series event earlier this year in Spain and placed fifth at his weight class. He is also scheduled to wrestle in the next Beach World Series event in Greece.

At 60 kg in the women’s draw, Mia Macaluso (Otisville, N.Y.) dropped both of her Group A matches on Friday. She opened with a 3-2 loss to Lilou Dupinay of France in 1:58. In the second round, she was defeated 3-0 by Daria Medvetska of Ukraine in 51 seconds. Macaluso will face Iryna Chykradze of Ukraine in her final Group A match on Saturday morning.

Macaluso must win her Saturday match and finish in the top two of Group A in order to advance to the semifinals later on Saturday.

Laura White (Duanesburg, N.Y./Curby 3 Style WC) lost her only 50 kg women’s match on Friday, falling to Emine Cataloglu of Turkey in 38 seconds. White is in a three-athlete round robin at her weight and received a bye in the second session. On Saturday, White will battle Justine Fanny Vigouroux of France. Cataloglu has already clinched the gold medal with two wins, so the winner of the White vs. Vigouroux match will secure the silver medal.

Both White and Macaluso won titles at the 2022 U.S. Beach Nationals. Both are also scheduled to compete in the next Beach World Series event in Greece.

This is the first of five Beach World Series events which will set the field for the 2023 World Beach Games in Bali, Indonesia, next August 5-12. The two remaining Beach World Series events in Greece and Romania this year will also be qualifiers, as will be the first two Beach World Series events of 2023. The top eight athletes per weight category and gender from these five events will earn a quota place for their National Olympic Committee at the World Beach Games.


At Cousteau Beach, Saint Laurent du Var, France

U.S. men’s performance

70 kg – Mitchell Cook, Orland Park, Ill. (Natural Athlete WC)

Knockout match

WIN Clement LaMothe (France), fall 0:05

Group A

WIN Carlos Alvarez Iglesias (Spain), 3-2, 1:19

LOSS Stefan Ionut Coman (Romania), 3-0, 0:45

Vs. Yunus Coskun (Turkey)

U.S. women’s performance

50 kg – Laura White, Duanesburg, N.Y. (Curby 3 Style WC)

LOSS Emine Cataloglu (Turkey), 3-0, 0:38

Vs. Justine Fanny Vigouroux (France)

60 kg – Mia Macaluso, Otisville, N.Y.

Group A matches

LOSS Lilou Dupinay (France), 3-2, 1:58

LOSS Daria Medvetska (Ukraine), 3-0, 0:51

Vs. Iryna Chykradze (Ukraine)