David Taylor selected as USA Wrestling Athlete of the Week

By Taylor Miller, USA Wrestling | July 31, 2018, 8:38 p.m. (ET)

Photo: David Taylor competes at the Yasar Dogu in Istanbul, Turkey. Photo by Max Rose-Fyne, United World Wrestling.

David Taylor (State College, Pa./Nittany Lion WC) has been selected as TheMat.com Athlete of the Week for July 31, 2018.

In a warm-up event for the 2018 World Championships, World Team member David Taylor pinned his way through a tough 86 kg bracket at the Yasar Dogu International in Istanbul, Turkey, which serves as a ranking tournament for this year’s World Championships.

Taylor began the tournament, sticking three-time age-group World medalist Azamat Dauletbekov of Kazakhstan, who won a U23 World silver medal in 2017. The American picked up the pin in 4:37.

He shaved nearly a minute off of that time in his second bout as the Nittany Lion pinned 2017 Senior World silver medal winner Boris Makoev of Slovakia at the 3:50 mark.

To advance to the finals, Taylor took out Turkey’s Ahmet Bilici in 4:05. Bilici won the 2018 Mediterranean Games at 86 kg.

For the gold medal, Taylor faced off against Murad Suleymanov of Azerbaijan, who took second at the 2017 Senior European Championships and won bronze at this year’s U23 Euros.

Outdoing his already impressive performance, Taylor was awarded the fall at 1:22 for a quick gold-medal finish.

With Taylor’s help, the USA won the team title with 150 points, defeating Iran’s 146 points for the top of the podium.

Each week USA Wrestling will select an Athlete of the Week based upon performance within wrestling for that week. The selection committee will consider any level of wrestling from youth programs through the senior level. Twitter fan votes also play a part in decision.

To nominate a wrestler for this honor please send the athlete's name, wrestling program, weekly accomplishments and career accolades to USA Wrestling Communications Coordinator Taylor Miller at tmiller@usawrestling.org.