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Taylor, Howk, Kilty repeat as USMC U23 Women’s Nationals champions; Mota-Pettis named Outstanding Wrestler

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Xochitl Mota-Pettis of Texas, 59 kg champion at the USMC U23 Nationals, was named Outstanding Wrestler.
Xochitl Mota-Pettis of Texas, 59 kg champion at the USMC U23 Nationals, was named Outstanding Wrestler. Photo by Justin Hoch.

SPOKANE, Wash. – Three returning U23 Nationals champions were dominant in their championships series and repeated as champions at the USMC U23 Women’s Nationals on Saturday at The Podium.

Repeating as U23 National champions after sweeping their best-of-three series on Saturday were Felicity Taylor (53 kg), Alisha Howk (55 kg) and Macey Kilty (65 kg). All three scored technical falls in both of their finals bouts.

Taylor, who competes for Iowa and is a member of the Senior National team, defeated Estrella Dorado Marin of Army WCAP in the finals, 13-0 in bout one and 10-0 in bout two.

Howk, a U23 World bronze medalist, stopped California high school star Elena Ivaldi in the championship series, 12-2 in bout one and 11-1 in bout two.

Kilty, a multiple age-group World medalist and a Senior National Team member, stopped Columbia student-athlete Maya Letona in the championship series, 10-0 in the first match and 11-0 in the second match.

All 10 championship series were finished as two-match sweeps by the winner.

At 59 kg, past U.S Senior Nationals runner-up Xochitl Mota-Pettis of Texas defeated returning U23 Nationals champion Nichole Moore of Kansas in two straight, 10-0 in bout one and 12-2 in bout two. Mota-Pettis was named Outstanding Wrestler in the tournament.

Two-time NAIA champion Adaugo Nwachukwu of Iowa Wesleyan, a 2022 U20 Nationals champion, won the 62 kg title, with a two match sweep over Marisol Nugent of the Univ. of North Carolina, both matches by 10-0 margins.

Ashley Lekas of Texas, who competes at Augsburg, defeated NAIA national runner-up Joye Levendusky of Southern Oregon in two-straight shutouts. Lekas won match one 2-0, then closed it out with a 5-0 win.

In the all-Augsburg finals at 68 kg, 2023 NCWWC national champion Katerina Lange edged teammate and NCWWC All-American Nina Makem in the finals. Lange won bout one 2-0, then claimed bout two 2-2.

The another finals matchup of college stars, Montana DeLawder of King defeated Payton Stroud of McKendree in the 57 kg finals series, 9-2 and 13-7.

At 50 kg, four-time NCWWC champion Emily Shilson of McKendree was injured in the first 26 seconds of the match against NCWWC runner-up Sage Mortimer of King. Shilson could not continue. Officials disqualified Mortimer for the move, which gave the match and the series to Shilson.

NAIA national champion Kaylynn Albrecht of Baker won the 72 kg finals without competing, after NCWWC All-American Cheyenne Bowman of King did not make weight.

Champions at the U23 World Team Trials may compete at the U23 World Championships in Tampere, Finland, October 23-29, unless an age-eligible member of the 2023-24 U.S. Senior National Team chooses to compete at the weight class, as determined by the U23 World Team Selection Procedures.

At Spokane, Wash., April 14, 2023

50 kg - Emily Shilson (MN) dec. Sage Mortimer (UT), two matches to none
Bout One –Shilson won by disq. over Mortimer, 0:26
Bout Two – Shilson won by disq.

3rd - Anaya Falcon (CA) won by tech fall over Kaelani Shufeldt (CA), 13-2
5th - Kendra Ryan (IL) won by tech fall over Emma Jones (IN), 10-0
7th - Elizabeth Dosado (VA) won by forfeit over Aliyah Rollins (CA) (FF)

53 kg - Felicity Taylor (IA) dec. Estrella Dorado Marin (CO), two matches to none
Bout One – Taylor tech fall Dorado Marin, 13-0
Bout Two – Taylor tech fall Dorado Marin, 10-0

3rd - Alexandra Szkotnicki (Belvidere Bandits Wrestling Cl) won by fall over Kiely Tabaldo (CA), 4:24
5th - Jaslynn Gallegos (CO) and Samara Chavez (TX) double forfeit
7th - Josie Bartishofski (WI) won by fall over Katherine Heath (TX), 2:29

55 kg - Alisha Howk (WI) dec. Elena Ivaldi (CA), two matches to none
Bout One – Howk tech fall Ivaldi, 12-2
Bout Two – Howk tech. fall Ivaldi, 11-1

3rd - Gabrielle Skidmore (WI) won by decision over Mia Macaluso (NY), 10-1
5th - Alana Vivas (CA) won by disqualification over Vayle Baker (PA)
7th - Danielle Garcia (CA) won by fall over Melanie Mendoza (CA), 5:16

57 kg - Montana DeLawder (PA) dec. Payton Stroud (WA), two matches to none
Bout One – Delawder dec. Stroud, 9-2
Bout Two – Delawder dec. Stroud, 13-7

3rd - Ngao Shoua Whitethorn (WI) won by tech fall over Katrina Kling (NJ), 14-3
5th - Jasmine Hernandez (TX) won by tech fall over Tess Barnett (OR), 10-0
7th - Presley Anderson (CA) won by tech fall over Trynadii Rocha (OR), 10-0)

59 kg - Xochitl Mota-Pettis (TX) dec. Nichole Moore (LMRC), two matches to none
Bout One – Mota-Pettis tech fall Moore, 10-0
Bout Two – Mota-Pettis tech fall Moore, 12-2

3rd - Salome Walker (IN) won by decision over Piper Cadden (AZ), 11-8
5th - Hailey Chapman (CA) and Lily Sherer (PA), double forfeit
7th - Ashley Whetzal (MO) won by fall over Araya Boday (WA), 3:37

62 kg - Adaugo Nwachukwu (CA) dec. Marisol Nugent (MA), two matches to none
Bout One – Nwachukwu tech fall Nugent, 10-0
Bout Two – Nwachukwu tech fall Nugent, 10-0

3rd - YeLe Aycock (NM) won by fall over Paige Wehrmeister (MO), 4:04
5th - Waipuilani Estrella-Beauchamp (HI) won by decision over Louisa Schwab (CA), 6-4
7th - Taylor Colangelo (AZ) won by tech fall over Viveca Pannell (CA), 10-0

65 kg - Macey Kilty (WI) dec. Maya Letona (CA), two matches to none
Bout One –Kilty tech fall Letona, 10-0
Bout Two – Kilty tech. fall Letona, 11-0

3rd - Grace Stem (PA) won by tech fall over Viktorya Torres (WA), 14-4
5th - Kendall Bostelman (OH) and Riley Aamold (WA), double forfeit
7th - Desinee Lopez (CA) won by injury default over Bridgette Sotomayor (AZ), 0:00

68 kg - Katerina Lange (MN) dec. Nina Makem (MN), two matches to none
Bout One – Lange dec. Makem, 4-2
Bout Two – Lange dec. Makem, 2-2

3rd - Tiera Jimerson (CA) won by decision over Anastasia Hardin (KY), 6-0
5th - Aspen Barber (CO) won by forfeit over Chloe Ogden (NC)
7th - Eleni Fakaosi (CA) won by decision over Celina Cooke (NV), 9-5

72 kg - Kaylynn Albrecht (TX) wins by forfeit. Opponent Cheyenne Bowman (CA) did not make weight.

3rd - Noelle Gaffney (NJ) won by injury default over Cara Broadus (CT), 0:41
5th - Marissa Porsch (KS) won by fall over Katelyn Lewis (WI), 3:59
7th - Alexandria Hernandez (WA) won by tech fall over Hailey Jo Ahsmuhs (OR), 12-2

76 kg - Ashley Lekas (TX) dec. Joye Levendusky (NY), two matches to none
Bout One –Lekas dec. Levendusky, 2-0
Bout Two – Lekas dec. Levendusky, 5-0

3rd - Brooklyn Hays (UT) won by forfeit over Tristan Kelly (CO)
5th - Flor Parker Borrero (WA) won by forfeit over Marlynne Deede (UT)
7th - Bo Geibe (MI) won by decision over Kamilla Montenegro (NV), 6-4
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