J'den Cox wins his semifinal match at the World Wrestling Championships on Oct. 21, 2018 in Budapest, Hungary.
Team USA wrestler J’den Cox was an Olympic bronze medalist in 2016 and a world championship bronze medalist in 2017 in the 86 kilogram weight class. Wrestling at the new 92 kg. class, Cox is a now world champion.
He defeated 2010 World Military silver medalist Ivan Yankouski of Belarus, 4-1, to win his first world title and give the U.S. its third gold medal of the 2018 World Wrestling Championships on Monday in Budapest, Hungary.
Yankouski was placed on the shot clock right off the bat and Cox got the first point of the match. The score remained 1-0 going into the break and on the other side Yankouski was once again on the clock. Again he couldn’t score, and Cox went ahead 2-0.
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On Sunday, Cox wrestled in a world semifinal for the third year in a row but for the first time at the new weight class, defeating 2015 world bronze medalist Alireza Karimimachiani of Iran, 5-2, to earn a spot in the final for the first time.
The Columbia, Missouri, native and three-time NCAA champion from the University of Missouri also beat Georgia’s Dato Marsagishvili, 6-2, and Moldova’s Nicolai Ceban, 6-0, in his march to the gold medal.
The U.S. has now won six medals at this year’s world championships.
Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.