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UPDATE: Nelson places fifth in men’s freestyle at University Worlds in Finland

KOURTANE, Finland – 2012 NCAA champion Tony Nelson (Cambridge, Minn./Minnesota Storm) had the top U.S. finish at the University World Championships on Wednesday after placing fifth at 120 kg/264.5 lbs.

Nelson opened with a big win over 2011 Pan American Games silver medalist Sunny Dhinsa of Canada, winning in three periods, 0-1, 1-0, 1-1.

In the second round, Nelson lost to 2012 Asian champion Parviz Hadi of Iran, 0-2, 0-3. When Hadi reached the finals, Nelson was drawn back into the repechage.

Nelson won his first repechage bout, stopping Richard Csercsics of Hungary, 3-2, 1-0. In the bronze-medal match, Nelson was defeated by Oleksandr Khotsianivskyi of Ukraine, 0-1, 0-4. Khotsianivskyi competed in the 2012 Olympic Games.

Nelson competes for the Univ. of Minnesota and looks to defend his NCAA title this year.

Two other U.S. men’s freestyle wrestlers fell short of the medal rounds. Both are also past NCAA champions

Jon Reader (Ames, Iowa/Sunkist Kids) was eighth at 84 kg/185 lbs. Reader opened with a wild 7-6, 6-5 win over 2010 Asian bronze medalist Feng Zhang of China. He was defeated by Akhmed Magomedov of Russia, 0-3, 0-3. When Magomedov didn’t make the finals, Reader was eliminated. He placed eighth in the final standings. Reader won an NCAA title for Iowa State

Dustin Kilgore (Berea, Ohio/Sunkist Kids), placed ninth at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. Kilgore was defeated in his only match by two-time Tahkti Cup champion Abbas Tahan of Iran, 0-1, 1-1. When Tahan fell short of the finals, Kilgore was eliminate. Kilgore was a 2011 NCAA champion for Kent State and returns to seek another title this year.

"Men's Freestyle finished day two of University Worlds a bit frustrated but overall learning some important lessons. In a situation, we stopped an attack but didn't clear hands completely off our legs and let an opponent back in the door. This and a few others are positions we see less of on our side of the world," said National Freestyle Developmental Coach Bill Zadick.

Led by two medalists, silver medalist Zach Sanders (Lauderdale, Minn./Minnesota Storm) at 55 kg/121 lbs. and bronze medalist Colton Sponseller (Glenmont, Ohio/New York AC) at 74 kg/163 lbs., the United States placed sixth as a team with 34 points. Turkey and Russia tied for first with 49 points, but Turkey won the tiebreaker based upon medal results. Moldova was third with 44 points.

"The USA is very talented and capable. We can win in a big way internationally at the University level and at all age levels. We have to get more freestyle experiences, like these, and continue building fundamental tactics and strategy that enable us to win in all disciplines of our sport," said Zadick.

The women’s freestyle competition also began on Wednesday, and two U.S. wrestlers placed ninth with 0-1 records,

Victoria Anthony (Huntington Beach, Calif./New York AC) at 48 kg/105.5 lbs. and Logan Rich (Hope, Maine/OKCU Gator Women’s RTC) at 51 kg/112.25 lbs.

Anthony lost to Sarianne Savola of Finland, 4-1, 3-4, 0-2, while Rich was pinned by Natalia Budu of Romania. Neither U.S. wrestler were drawn back into the repechage when their opponents failed to reach the finals.

Five more U.S. women wrestlers have weighed in and will compete on Thursday. Included among the U.S. women is 2012 World champion Adeline Gray (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC), who claimed the World title at 67 kg/147.5 lbs. last Thursday. Gray is moving up a weight for this event, and will compete at 72 kg/158.5 lbs.

At Kourtane, Finland, October 3

Men’s freestyle results

84 kg/185 lbs.
Gold - M. Mostafajoukar (Iran)
Silver - Serdar Bake (Turkey)
Bronze - Ion Gurmanzachi (Moldova)
Bronze - Akhmed Magomedov (Russia)
5th - Andrei Victor Frant (Romania)
5th - Tomasz Nowakowski (Poland)
7th - Nedelcho Nedelchev (Bulgaria)
8th - Jon Reader (USA)
9th - Feng Zhang (China)
10th - Kengo Sazaki (Japan)

96 kg/211.5 lbs.
Gold - Marat Ibragimov (Russia)
Silver - Nicolae Ceban (Moldova)
Bronze - Abbas Tahan (Iran)
Bronze - Muren Mutlu (Turkey)
5th - Chanmit Phulka (Canada)
5th - Radoslaw Baran (Poland)
7th - Liubomyr Sagaliuk (Ukraine)
8th - K Dorjkhand (Mongolia)
9th - Dustin Kilgore (USA)
10th - Jozsef Adamecz (Hungary)

120 kg/264.5 lbs.
Gold - Taha Akgul (Turkey)
Silver - Parviz Hadi (Iran)
Bronze - Vitalii Gagiev (Russia)
Bronze - O. Khotsianivskyi (Ukraine)
5th - Kamil Wojciechowski (Poland)
5th - Tony Nelson (USA)
7th - Odgerel Bat-Ochir (Mongolia)
8th - Alexandr Romanov (Moldova)
9th - Sunny Dhinsa (Canada)
10th - Richard Csercsics (Hungary)

U.S. men’s freestyle performances

84 kg/185 lbs. – Jon Reader, Ames, Iowa (Sunkist Kids), 8th
WIN Feng Zhang (China), 7-6, 6-5
LOSS Akhmed Magomedov (Russia), 0-3, 0-3

96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Dustin Kilgore, Berea, Ohio (Sunkist Kids), 9th
LOSS Abbas Tahan (Iran), 0-1, 1-1

120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Tony Nelson, Cambridge, Minn. (Minnesota Storm), 5th
WIN Sunny Dhinsa (Canada), 0-1, 1-0, 1-1
LOSS Parviz Hadi (Iran), 0-2, 0-3
WIN Richard Csercsics (Hungary), 3-2, 1-0
LOSS O. Khotsianivskyi (Ukraine), 0-1, 0-4

Men’s Freestyle Team Standings
1 Turkey, 49 pts.
2 Russia, 49
3 Moldova, 44
4 Iran, 37
5 Ukraine, 34
6 United States, 32
7 Poland, 25
8 Romania, 24
9 Canada, 22
10 Japan, 20
11 Mongolia, 17
12 China, 13
13 Bulgaria, 12
14 France, 11
15 Hungary, 5
16 Tajikistan, 4
17 Finland, 1

Women’s freestyle results

48 kg/105.5 lbs.
Gold - Yuki Irie (Japan)
Silver - Ni Li (China)
Bronze - Iryna Rybak (Ukraine)
Bronze - Jasmine Mian (Canada)
5th - Sarianne Savola (Finland)
5th - N. Erdenesukh (Mongolia)
7th - Alina Moreva (Russia)
8th - Sumeyya Sezer (Turkey)
9th - Victoria Anthony (USA)
10th - A. Munteanu (Romania)

51 kg/112.25 lbs.
Gold - Gen Haley (Canada)
Silver - D. Erkhembayar (Mongolia)
Bronze - Haruka Hirano (Japan)
Bronze - Natalia Budu (Moldova)
5th - Merve Kenger (Turkey)
5th - Anna Lukasiak (Poland)
7th - Stalvira Orshush (Russia)
8th - Tiina Ylinen (Finland)
9th - Liudmyla Skliarenko (Ukraine)
9th - Logan Rich (USA)

U.S. women’s freestyle performances

48 kg/105.5 lbs. – Victoria Anthony, Huntington Beach, Calif. (New York AC), 9th
LOSS Sarianne Savola (Finland), 4-1, 3-4, 0-2

51 kg/112.25 lbs. – Logan Rich, Hope, Maine (OKCU Gator Women’s RTC), 9th
LOSS Natalia Budu (Romania), pin

U.S. women’s freestyle draws for Thursday

55 kg/121 lbs. – Michaela Hutchison, Soldotna, Alaska (OKCU Gator RTC)
Vs. Tatiana Debien (France), 2011 European Junior silver medalist

59 kg/130 lbs. – Ashley Hudson, Wildwood, Mo. (Gator WC)
Vs. Viktoria Chepurko (Ukraine)

63 kg/138.75 lbs. – Melissa Apodaca, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
Vs. Ayako Sato (Japan). Two-time Junior World bronze medalist

67 kg/145.5 lbs. – Julia Salata, Canton, Mich. (New York AC)
Vs. Lei Wang (China)

72 kg/158.5 lbs. - Adeline Gray, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
Vs. Yinan Xi (China)
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