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White wins bronze medal, Cook takes fifth and Macaluso seventh at Beach World Series in France

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Laura White (USA) competing at Beach World Series in France.
Laura White (USA) competing at Beach World Series in France. Photo by Mia Macaluso.

SAINT LAURENT DU VAR, France – The United States came home with a medal and three top-seven finishes at the Beach World Series event on Cousteau Beach on Saturday.

Claiming a bronze medal at 50 kg in the women’s division was Laura White (Duanesburg, N.Y./Curby 3 Style WC). White dropped her Saturday round-robin match to Justine Fanny Vigouroux of France, by fall in 2:27, On Friday, she was defeated 3-0 by eventual champion Emine Cataloglu of Turkey. White claimed a medal in her first Beach World Series appearance.

Placing fifth at 70 kg for the second straight Beach World Series event was Mitchell Cook (Orland Park, Ill. (Natural Athlete WC), who was also fifth at the Beach World Series event in Spain in June.

On Friday, Cook went 2-1, with wins over Clement LaMothe of France and Carlos Alvarez Iglesias of Spain, and a loss to Stefan Ionut Coman of Romania. On Saturday morning, Cook was beaten by Yunus Coskun of Turkey, 3-0 in 1:10, and did not advance to the semifinals. He placed highest among the athletes who did not reach the semifinal round.

Competing in her first Beach World Series event was Mia Macaluso of Otisville, N.Y., who finished seventh at 60 kg. Macaluso did not advance to the semifinals from Group A, where she went 0-3 in a four-athlete roundrobin. On Saturday, she was beaten by fall by Iryna Chykradze of Ukraine, the eventual silver medalist.

White, Cook and Macaluso will continue to the next Beach World Series event, where they will compete in Katerini, Greece, July 9-10. White and Cook were champions at the 2022 U.S. Beach Nationals in Carolina Beach, N.C., while Cook was a runner-up at the 2022 Beach Nationals.

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, July 1-2

Women’s medalists

50 kg

Gold - Emine Cataloglu (Turkey)

Silver - Justine Fanny Vigouroux (France)

Bronze – Laura White (USA)

60 kg

Gold - Maria Victoria Baez Dilone (Spain)

Silver - Iryna Chykhradze (Ukraine)

Bronze - Daria Medvetska (Ukraine)

70 kg

Gold - Hatice Ece Tekin (Turkey)

Silver - Manon Kury (France)

Bronze - Olena Nikitinska (Ukraine)

Over 70 kg

Gold - Catalina Axente (Romania)

Silver - Liudmyla Pavlovets Tychyna (Ukraine)

Bronze - Stefania Zacheila (Greece)

Men’s medalists

70 kg

Gold - Levan Kelekhsashvili (Georgia)

Silver - Yunus Coskun (Turkey)

Bronze- Ramiz Hasanov (Azerbaijan)

80 kg

Gold - Nika Kenchadze (Georgia)

Silver - Maxim Vasilioglo (Romania)

Bronze - Omid Abdolali Kamaliaghdam (Azerbaijan)

90 kg

Gold - Mahmut Seyfi Ozkaya (Turkey)

Silver - David Khutsishvili (Georgia)

Bronze - Ibrahim Yusubov (Azerbaijan)

Over 90 kg

Gold - Fatih Yasarli (Turkey)

Silver - Mamuka Kordzaia (Georgia)

Bronze - Rafail Gkirnis (Greece)

U.S. women’s performances

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

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

LOSS Justine Fanny Vigouroux (France), fall, 2:27

60 kg – Mia Macaluso, Otisville, N.Y., 7th place

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

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

LOSS Iryna Chykradze (Ukraine), fall, 0:32

U.S. men’s performance

70 kg – Mitchell Cook, Orland Park, Ill. (Natural Athlete WC), 5th place

WIN Clement LaMothe (France), fall 0:05

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

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

LOSS Yunus Coskun (Turkey), 3-0, 1:10