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Hafizov named Outstanding Wrestler in U.S. Greco-Roman Open, as six WCAP wrestlers win titles

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Ildar Hafizov of Army WCAP hits an arm throw on Max Black of the New York AC in the 60 kg finals. Photo by Robbert Wijtman.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – A pair of two-time Olympians were among the champions at the USMC U.S. Greco-Roman Open which completed on Monday, including the event’s Outstanding Wrestler, Ildar Hafizov of the U.S. Army at 60 kg.

Hafizov won his third career U.S. Open title with a 9-0 technical fall over 2022 U20 national champion Max Black of the New York AC. Hafizov hit an arm throw and turned Black to end the finals match in the first period. He competed in the 2012 Olympic Games for Uzbekistan and in the 2020 Olympic Games for the United States.

2012 and 2016 U.S. Olympian Ben Provisor of the New York Athletic Club won a tough 5-3 battle over 2021 U.S. Open champion Spencer Woods of Army WCAP at 82 kg. Provisor scored two gut wrenches in the second period to lead 5-3, and a late Woods takedown was not enough to close the gap. It was Provisor’s fifth career U.S. Open title, and his second in a row.

The U.S. Army WCAP program had a dominant finals round, winning six individual titles this year.

Among the champions from the Army WCAP program was 2016 Olympic team member Jesse Thielke, who scored an impressive 9-0 technical fall over Aidan Nutter of the New York AC. Thielke, who entered the Army a few years ago, has not been able to compete recently due to injuries and the pandemic.

Winning his first career U.S. Open title at 97 kg with a lateral drop throw for a pin was Lucas Sheridan of Army WCAP. Veteran Khymba Johnson of the New York AC scored a takedown in the first period to lead 2-0. Johnson was hit twice for passivity which tied the score at 2-2, but Johnson had the edge on criteria. Sheridan tossed Johnson and scored the fall with just three seconds left in the bout.

Another first-time U.S. Open for Army WCAP was Britton Holmes at 77 kg, who won an exciting 9-6 battle over 2021 U.S. Open champion Alec Ortiz of the Minnesota Storm. Holmes jumped to an early lead of five points, but an exchange which was challenged by Ortiz changed the course of the match. Ortiz came from the bottom for a reversal and scored on a front headlock throw. Officials had the score 7-5 in favor of Holmes, but after the challenge, Ortiz led 6-5. Holmes responded with a counter throw for four points for a three-point lead and held off a furious Ortiz attack at the end.

Two Army WCAP wrestlers won titles without a finals match, Max Nowry at 55 kg and 2020 Olympian Alejandro Sancho at 67 kg. Nowry received a forfeit over his Army teammate Dalton Duffield, for his fourth career U.S. Open title. Sancho won by injury default when opponent Lenny Merkin of the New York AC did not compete due to injury. It was Sancho’s second career U.S. Open title.

Winning second career U.S. Open titles were Benji Peak of the Sunkist Kids at 72 kg and Alan Vera of the New York AC at 87 kg.

Peak scored a 9-6 victory of Peter Ogansanya of the West Point WC, 9-6. Ogansanya had an early 2-1 lead but Peak took a 4-2 lead with a takedown and a passivity point. Peak hit a body lock for four points to open up an 8-2 lead. Ogansanya scored a four-point throw with a few seconds left, but could not close the gap. Ogansanya is an NCAA qualifier for Army West Point.

Vera hit some big throws on the way to a 9-0 technical fall over George Sikes of the New York AC in the finals. Vera, who emigrated from Cuba, was a member of the 2021 U.S. World Team. Vera won his first U.S. Open title in 2020.

Winning a third U.S. Open title at 130 kg was 2021 World Team member Cohlton Schultz of the Sunkist Kids, who did not have a finals match when opponent West Cathcart of the New York AC withdrew with injury. Schultz, a past Cadet World champion and Junior World medalist, was an NCAA runner-up for Arizona State this year

Winning the Div. I team title was the New York AC, with Army WCAP in second place. The Div. II champion was the Sunkist Kids WC, with the Minnesota Storm taking second.

The top seven placewinners in each weight class who have not already qualified will advance to the World Team Trials Challenge Tournament in Coralville, Iowa in May.


At Las Vegas, Nev., May 1, 2022

55 KG

1st Max Nowry CO (Army WCAP) forfeit Dalton Duffield OK (Army WCAP)

3rd Drew West IL (Illinois) pin Jacob Cochran FL (New York Athletic Club), 2:34

5th Camden Russell NE (MWC Wrestling Academy) tech fall Dominic Robertson OR (All Navy), 8-0 0:27

7th Cole Smith CO (Army WCAP) pin Stephen Emrich MN (Minnesota), 1:36

60 KG

1st Ildar Hafizov CO (Army WCAP) tech fall Max Black CO (New York Athletic Club), 9-0 2:20

3rd Dylan Koontz WI (Ohio RTC / TMWC) tech fall Mitchell Brown AZ (Air Force RTC), 8-0 1:51

5th Phillip Moomey NE (Spartan Combat RTC / TMWC) inj. dft Dalton Roberts MI (Army WCAP)

7th Kegan Calkins IL (Illinois) dec. Alex Thomsen IA (Nebraska Wrestling Training Center), 12-10

63 KG

1st Jesse Thielke CO (Army WCAP) tech fall Aidan Nutter WI (New York Athletic Club), 9-0 1:29

3rd Corbin Nirschl NE (MWC Wrestling Academy) tech fall Ty Lydic PA (Knights WC), 8-0 2:25

5th Logan Savvy TX (New York Athletic Club) tech fall Nicholas Leonetti ID (Suples WC), 9-0 1:32

7th Dwayne Guerrero CA (West Coast Greco RTC) tech fall Farrokh Safaeinejad FL (New York Athletic Club), 8-0 0:19

67 KG

1st Alejandro Sancho CO (Army WCAP) inj. dft. Lenny Merkin NY (New York Athletic Club)

3rd Alston Nutter WI (Sunkist Kids WC) tech fall Peyton Omania MI (New York Athletic Club), 8-0 3:26

5th Nathan Moore WA (Northern Colorado WC) pin Morgan Flaharty CO (New York Athletic Club), 2:38

7th Colton Parduhn AK (Interior Grappling Academy) tech fall Jakob Murillo UT (Brunson UVRTC), 8-0 1:35

72 KG

1st Benjamin Peak WI (Sunkist Kids WC) dec. Peter Ogunsanya NY (West Point WC), 9-6

3rd Michael Hooker CO (Army WCAP) dec. Brody Olson MN (NMU-National Training Center), 5-0

5th Eddie Smith IA (Pickaxe WC) forfeit Ryan Wheeler WA (Colorado Mesa WC)

7th Noah Wachsmuth CO (Cobra All-Stars) pin Bobby Yamashita CO (All Navy), 0:51

77 KG

1st Britton Holmes CO (Army WCAP) dec. Alec Ortiz MN (Minnesota Storm), 9-6

3rd Payton Jacobson WI (Sunkist Kids WC) pin Jack Ervien, Jr. WA (Viking WC (IA)), 1:38

5th Tyler Eischens MN (California RTC (CA RTC)) inj. dft Kamal Bey CO (Army WCAP)

7th Justin Mccunn IA (Viking WC (IA)) pin Terrance Parks NY (New York Athletic Club), 1:43

82 KG

1st Ben Provisor PA (New York Athletic Club) dec. Spencer Woods AK (Army WCAP) , 5-3

3rd Ryan Epps MN (Minnesota Storm) dec. Tommy Brackett TN (Tennessee), 4-3

5th Jacob Fisher AZ (Curby 3 Style WC) no contest Tyler Cunningham NE (MWC Wrestling Academy)

7th Aaron Dobbs WI (NMU-National Training Center) tech fall Khalil Abdushshakur GA (Morris Fitness WC), 12-1 2:33

87 KG

1st Alan Vera NJ (New York Athletic Club) tech fall George Sikes FL (New York Athletic Club), 9-0 1:28

3rd Timothy Young IL (Illinois) pin Christian Dulaney MN (Minnesota Storm), 4:18

5th Austin Craig WA (All Navy) dec. Sione Halo WA (Grays Harbor WC), 10-5

7th Carter Marx MN (Mustang WC) forfeit Jovan Mercado MI (Michigan)

97 KG

1st Lucas Sheridan CO (Army WCAP) pin Khymba Johnson MI (New York Athletic Club), 5:57

3rd Haydn Maley OR (Roseburg Mat Club /Umpqua Valley WA) tech fall Brady Vogel IA (Dubuque WC), 8-0 1:48

5th Chad Porter AZ (Sunkist Kids WC) no contest Guy Patron IA (Dubuque WC)

7th Kash Anderson ID (Colorado Mesa WC) forfeit Ben Gould CA (CSU Pueblo Wrestling RTC

130 KG

1st Cohlton Schultz CO (Sunkist Kids WC) inj. dft. West Cathcart IL (New York Athletic Club)

3rd David Tate Orndorff OH (Ohio RTC / TMWC) pin Courtney Freeman NC (Marines), 2-0 1:31

5th Kaleb Reeves IA (Eastern Iowa WC) dec. Malcolm Allen MN (Legends of Gold), 11-8

7th Jonovan Smith CA (California) dec. Tom Foote MA (New York Athletic Club), 1-1

Outstanding Wrestler – Ildar Hafizov (Army WCAP), 60 kg

Div. I Team Standings

1. New York Athletic Club

2. U.S. Army WCAP

Div. II Team Standings

1. Sunkist Kids

2. Minnesota Storm