Ragan, Augello, Mensah and Velte win Women’s World Team Trials in Las Vegas

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | April 29, 2017, 12:56 a.m. (ET)
Alli Ragan has her arm raised in victory against Francesca Giorgio in the 60 kg finals of the World Team Trials. Photo by Justin Hoch.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Four members of the 2017 U.S. World Team in women’s wrestling were determined during the Championship Series finals at the Women’s World Team Trials at the South Point Arena on Friday.

2016 World silver medalist Alli Ragan (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC) made her fifth World Team with a dominant two-match sweep over Francesca Giorgio (West Lawn, Pa./Simon Fraser), winning both bouts by technical falls.

In bout one, Ragan threw Giorgio for five points early in the first period. She converted a two-point low single to make it 7-0, followed by a turn for a 9-0 lead. She added a spin behind takedown to make it 11-0.

In bout two, Ragan was equally dominant, getting a takedown and three tilts for an 8-0 lead, then closing it out with a takedown and a 10-0 lead.

“This is a stepping stone to being a World champion. I was just going out there and winning. This is my weight class now. I am excited. I was at 58 kg the last cycle, now I am at 60 kg.” said Ragan.

2016 Olympian Haley Augello (Lockport, Ill./New York AC) made her first Senior World Championships Team, defeating three-time World Team member Whitney Conder (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC) in two straight matches, 8-5 in bout one, and 5-4 in bout two.

In bout one, Conder was put on the shot clock in the first period and was unable to score, giving Augello the first point. In the second period, Augello scored four points on a counter roll-through, with Conder coming out for the reversal making it 5-1. Conder challenged the call and they changed it, giving Augello six points on her action, making it 8-1 after the penalty for the failed challenge. Conder nailed a four-point throw to close it to 8-5. A Conder takedown made it 8-7 but could not score in the final seconds.

In the second match, Augello scored two takedowns in the first period to lead 4-2 at the break. Conder scored a takedown to tie it at 4-4, but Augello got the reversal to take the 5-4 lead, which held up at the end of the bout.

“I know she is a tough opponent. I have a lot of respect for her, but I think the way I compete, I don’t ever feel threatened in any position. I know I can fight through any position. I never felt in danger, because my training teaches me to fight through all positions. I felt fairly safe, even though she was coming on hard,” said Augello.

Two young stars earned their first berth on U.S. Senior World Teams, Mallory Velte (Sacramento, Calif./Titan Mercury WC) at 63 kg/138.75 lbs. and Tamyra Mensah (Katy, Texas/Titan Mercury WC) at 69 kg/152 lbs.

Mensah defeated two-time Olympian and seven-time World Team member Elena Pirozhkova (New York, N.Y./Titan Mercury WC) in a two-match sweep. Mensah avenged a loss to Pirozhkova from the finals of the 2017 U.S. Open. She also snapped Pirozhkova’s streak of nine straight U.S. World and Olympic Teams.

Mensah got ahead 2-1, but a stepout by Mensah allowed Pirozhkova to tie it at 2-2. Mensah hit an ankle pick early in the second period for a 4-2 lead, which she held for the rest of the period.

“It all came down to technique. (The coaches) told me to have heavy hands in the first period, and in the second period, to go hard and go fast. You have the athleticism to do it. Just go out and do it and believe in yourself,” she said.

Velte won two straight matches over 2017 U.S. Open champion Jennifer Page (Colorado Springs, Colo./Titan Mercury WC), winning 10-8 in the first bout and 2-2 in the second bout.

Velte opened the match first match strong, taking a 4-2 lead at the break. She was able to add to her lead in the second period going ahead 10-4 late in the period. However, Page hit a four-point arm throw in the closing seconds to close it to 10-8 for Velte.

In the second bout, the match was tied 1-1 at the break. Page took a 2-1 lead on a pushout. Velte was put on a shot clock, but responded with a pushout to tie it at 2-2, and when time ran out, she won the bout by criteria.

“I lost to her at the Open, but I beat her at the Olympic Trials. This feels good. I am ready to win a World medal in Paris. I imagined this. I also imagined going to the Worlds when I lost in the Trials finals in New York. Getting this win really feels good,” said Velte.

The final four weight classes will be contested on Saturday, with 48 kg, 55 kg, 58 kg and 75 kg up for grabs. See all the action on FloWrestling.

WORLD TEAM TRIALS
At Las Vegas, Nev., April 28

Women’s freestyle Championship Series results

53 kg/116.5 lbs. – Haley Augello, Lockport, Ill. (New York AC) dec. Whitney Conder, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army WCAP), two matches to none
Bout One – Augello dec. Conder, 8-7
Bout Two – Augello dec. Conder, 5-4

60 kg/132 lbs. –Alli Ragan (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) dec. Francesca Giorgio, West Lawn, Pa. (Simon Fraser), two matches to none
Bout One – Ragan tech. fall Giorgio, 11-0
Bout Two - Ragan tech fall Giorgio, 11-0

63 kg/138.75 lbs.
1st - Mallory Velte, Sacramento, Calif. (Titan Mercury WC) dec. Jennifer Page, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Titan Mercury WC), two matches to none
Bout One – Velte dec. Page, 10-8
Bout Two – Velte dec. Page, 2-2

69 kg/152 lbs. - Tamyra Mensah, Katy, Texas (Titan Mercury WC) dec. Elena Pirozhkova, New York, N.Y. (Titan Mercury WC), two matches to none
Bout One – Mensah dec. Pirozhkova, 4-2
Bout Two – Mensah dec. Pirozhkova, 6-2

Medal matches

53 kg/116.5 lbs.
3rd - Amy Fearnside Jamestown, ND (TMWC) dec. Ronna Heaton, Brookings, S.D. (Sunkist Kids), 7-6
5th - Dajan Treder Jamestown, N.D (Jimmie Wrestling Club) by inj. dft over Deanna Betterman, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
7th - Christina Powell Marshall, Mo. (Missouri Valley Wrestling Club) tech. fall Cassidy Jasperson Oklahoma City, Okla. (Aries WC), 10-0 3:29

60 kg/130 lbs.
True Third Place – Koral Sugiyama, Pocatello, Idaho (Campbellsville WC) dec. Nicole Joseph, Camarillo, Calif. (King University), 3-0
3rd - Koral Sugiyama, Pocatello, Idaho (Campbellsville WC) pin Arian Carpio Scottsdale, Ariz. (Sunkist Kids), 8-1 2:14
5th - Chloe Spencer Aberdeen, Wash. (Choker WC) dec. Carla Ponce Oklahoma City, Okla. (Aries WC), 5-2
7th - Darla Allen, Lebanon, Ill. (Bearcat WC) dec. Cheyenne Bates, Plainview, Texas (Wayland Baptist), 10-4

63 kg/138.75 lbs.
3rd - Maya Nelson, Denver, Colo. (Sunkist Kids) dec. Jenna Burkert Colorado Springs, CO (U.S. Army), 6-1
5th - Forrest Molinari Benicia, Calif. (Titan Mercury WC) dec. Alexis Porter, Niskayuna, N.Y. (NYAC), 6-0
7th - Randi Beltz Saint Clair, Mo. (Titan Mercury WC) tech. fall Marina Briceno Plainview, Texas (Wayland Baptist), 10-0 0:47

69 kg/152 lbs.
3rd - Niauni Hill, Oakland, Calif. (Lindenwood Belleville) dec. Rachel Watters, Ankeny, Iowa, (NYAC), 6-2
5th - Alexandria Glaude Lebanon, Ill. (Bearcat WC) dec. Hannah Gladden, Williamsburg, Ky. (University of the Cumberlands), 10-3
7th - Margaret Douma Oklahoma City, Okla. (Aries WC) pin Andrea Sennett Lebanon, Ill. (Bearcat WC), 1:36