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TheMat.com moving to USOC website platform with new look and functionality

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Terry Shockley named Chairman of the Board of Governors of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame

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NCAA announces finalist cities for its championships for 2014-18, including wrestling at all levels

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Henson, Slay win Olympic silver medals in freestyle wrestling



Two U.S. wrestlers, Sammie Henson (Norman, Okla./Sunkist Kids) at 54 kg/119 lbs. and Brandon Slay (Amarillo, Texas/Dave Schultz WC) at 76 kg/167.5 lbs. claimed silver medals in freestyle wrestling at the Sydney Exhibition Centre in Darling Harbour, during the evening session on September 30. Henson was defeated by 1996 Olympic silver medalist Namik Abdullayev of Azerbaijan, 4-3 in the gold-medal match. Henson fell behind quickly, as Abdullayev scored a takedown at 14 seconds then turned him for two on an ankle lace at 45 seconds, to trail 3-0. Henson received a point for a caution and a point at the 1:52 mark, then a double leg takedown at 2:50 to trail 3-2 at the break. Sammie tied it at the 3:22 on a double leg. Abdullayev took the lead with a takedown at 4:30 and held it until the end. Henson had beaten Abdallayev in the 1998 World finals in Tehran, Iran, when Henson was the World Champion. Henson was competing in his first Olympic Games. He won the 100th Olympic medal for the United States in freestyle wrestling during the modern Olympics with his medal performance, a major milestone for the U.S. program. Henson won four straight matches to qualify for the finals, including a 3-0 win over German Kontoev of Belarus in the semifinals. Henson is originally from St. Charles, Mo. He was an All-American at the Univ. of Missouri, then transferred to Clemson Univ., where he was a two-time NCAA champion. Slay battled 1994 World Champion Alexander Leipold of Germany in the gold medal match. Both athletes were hit for passivity in the first period, but no points were scored. They started the second period in the clinch. After the athletes jockied for a lock-up, the officials hit Slay with a caution and 2-point penalty for not locking up properly at the 3:00 mark. At 3:30 Slay was hit for another caution and one point penalty, for a 3-0 Leipold lead. Leipold got a takedown at 5:09 for the final 4-0 decision. Slay was competing in his first Olympic Games, and is on his first U.S. World-level team. Slay won four straight matches to qualify for the finals. A key victory came in his second match, when he shocked 1996 Olympic Champion and three-time World Champion Bouvaissa Saitiev of Russia, 4-3. Slay is originally from Amarillo, Texas. He was a two-time NCAA runner-up for the Univ. of Pennsylvania. Slay is a U.S. Olympic Training Center resident athlete in Colorado Springs, Colo. Four other U.S. wrestlers will compete in Sunday morning's quarterfinals: Terry Brands (Lincoln, Neb./Hawkeye WC) at 127.75 pounds, Lincoln McIlravy (Iowa City, Iowa/Hawkeye WC) at 69 kg/152 lbs., Charles Burton (Bloomington, Ind./New York AC) at 167.5 pounds and Kerry McCoy (Bethlehem, Pa./New York AC) at 130 kg/286 pounds. THE TIME FOR THE SUNDAY MORNING SESSION IS 9:00 AM, a change from the time sessions on the other seven days of the wrestling competition. THE TIME OF SUNDAY'S EVENING SESSION IS 2:30 P.M., a change from the time sessions of the other seven days of wrestling competition. Freestyle Wrestling, September 30, 5:00 p.m. session 54 kg - Sammie Henson, Norman, Okla. (Sunkist Kids) Gold medal finals - vs. Namik Abdulayev (Azerbaijan), 4-3 76 kg - Brandon Slay, Amarillo, Texas (Dave Schultz WC) Gold medal finals - lost dec. to Alexander Leipold (Germany), 4-0 MEDAL MATCHES 54 kg/119 lbs. Gold - Namik Abdullayev (Azerbaijan) dec. Sammie Henson (United States), 4-3 Bronze - Amiran Kartntanov (Greece) dec. German Kontoev (Belarus), 5-4 63 kg/138.75 lbs. Gold -Mourat Oumakhanov (Russia) dec. Serafim Barzakov (Bulgaria), 3-2 Bronze -Jang Jae Sung (Korea) won by tech. fall over Mohammad Talaei (Iran), 12-2, 5:20 76 kg/167.5 pounds Gold -Alexander Leipold (Germany) dec. Brandon Slay (United States), 4-0 Bronze - Moon Eui-Jae (Korea) pin Adem Bereket (Turkey), 2:42 97 kg/213.75 lbs. Gold - Saghid Mourtasaliyev (Russia) dec. Islam Bairamukov (Kazakhstan), 6-0 Bronze - Eldar Kurtanidze (Georgia) dec. Marek Garmulewicz (Poland), 4-1
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