USA Wrestling WORLD CHAMPION: 19-y...

WORLD CHAMPION: 19-year-old Kyle Snyder becomes youngest gold medalist in U.S. wrestling history

By Craig Sesker USA Wrestling | Sept. 12, 2015, 12:46 a.m. (ET)

19-year-old American Kyle Snyder captured a gold medal at the World Championships on Friday night at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. Tony Rotundo photo.

LAS VEGAS – Kyle Snyder is the youngest World champion in United States wrestling history.

And the 19-year-old may be here to stay for a good long while.

Snyder capped an incredible and improbable run by earning a gold medal at the World Championships before a raucous sellout crowd of 7,000 fans Friday night at the Orleans Arena.

“I like making history,” Snyder said. “I want to be known as one of the greatest wrestlers to ever live.”

Snyder turned in a superb performance in knocking off returning World champion Abdusalam Gadisov of Russia 5-5 on criteria in the gold-medal freestyle match at 97 kg/213 lbs.

"It just feels really good," Snyder said. "It felt like all the hard work I put in paid off. Wrestling is not a sport where you can just go to practice and not think about it for the rest of the day. I think about wrestling constantly.

"A lot of time goes into something like this. Guys like Gadisov and other guys in my bracket are a big reason why I am where I am today. I appreciate them, and I know without them pushing me to be better, I wouldn't be where I am."

Snyder won by virtue of scoring on a pair of two-point moves to one two-point move for Gadisov.

Snyder, a 2013 Junior World champion, is now the youngest World medalist and finalist in U.S. men’s freestyle history. He was wrestling in his first Senior World Championships.

Snyder scored a takedown early in the second period to lead 3-1, but Gadisov came right back with a takedown of his own. After Gadisov scored a pushout to lead 4-3, Snyder powered straight in on a low-level leg attack for a takedown and a 5-4 lead with 23 seconds left.

Gadisov scored a late pushout to tie it 5-5, but Snyder had the edge in criteria and earned the win. Snyder ran around the mat holding an American flag in celebration of his historic win as fans stood and cheered.

"The crowd was incredible, they were amazing," Snyder said. "It made a big difference. The fans were awesome."

Snyder placed second at March’s Big Ten and NCAA Championships as a true freshman for national team champion Ohio State. He plans to take an Olympic redshirt during the 2015-16 school year.

"This is what I've been thinking about doing since the NCAA finals," Snyder said. "I worked hard with the coaches at Ohio State to get it done. I wasn't going to walk off the mat here without bringing home a gold medal.

"I took second at Big Tens and second at NCAAs. I wasn't going to take silver at Worlds."

Veteran Leigh Jaynes-Provisor earned a bronze medal for the U.S. at 60 kg/132 lbs. That win propelled the American women’s freestyle team to a third-place finish. Japan won the team title with 51 points, followed by China with 42 and the United States with 31.

Jaynes-Provisor scored a turn in the closing seconds to defeat Azerbaijan’s Irina Petr Netreba 4-4 on criteria to earn her first career medal. It was the third World appearance for the 34-year-old Jaynes-Provisor.

“Part of me knows that I was able to do it, but it’s just surreal,” Jaynes-Provisor said. “I don’t know how to explain it. It's an unbelievable experience to have come this far in such a short period of time. It's pretty incredible, and it's a testament of all the amazing people behind me. It’s an amazing feeling, and I’m very grateful for everyone who believed in me.”

Snyder started strong with a 2-1 win over 2013 World bronze medalist Pavlo Oliinyk of Ukraine in the first round at 97 kg/213 lbs. Snyder picked up a pair of points after Oliinyk twice was put on the shot clock for passivity.

Snyder came right back to dominate No. 8 Radoslaw Baran of Poland 8-0 in the second round. Snyder then rolled past Pan American Games bronze medalist Venezuela’s Jose Diaz 11-1 in the quarterfinals.

Snyder started quickly before powering to a hard-fought 6-3 win over 2012 University World bronze medalist Abbas Tahan of Iran in the semifinals.

Jaynes-Provisor opened with a 10-0 technical fall over Junior and Cadet World bronze medalist Madina Bakbergenova of Kazakhstan in women’s freestyle at 60 kg/132 lbs.

Jaynes-Provisor came back to earn a tough 8-5 win over 2013 World bronze medalist Emese Barka of Hungary in the quarterfinals. Jaynes then lost by first-period fall to No. 3 Oksana Herhel of Ukraine in the semifinals. Herhel went on to win the gold medal.

Three-time World Team member Reece Humphrey opened by holding off World bronze medalist Daulet Niyazbekov of Kazakhstan in the first round at 61 kg/134 lbs. The match ended in an 11-11 deadlock, but Humphrey won on criteria by virtue of scoring with a spectacular four-point throw.

Humphrey then dropped a 6-0 decision to 2013 Junior World silver medalist Nomin Batbold of Mongolia in the second round. Humphrey was eliminated when he lost by fall to India’s Bajrang in the repechage.

2009 World silver medalist Jake Herbert was unable to generate much offense in a 6-1 loss to No. 11 Sandro Aminashvili of Georgia in the first round at 86 kg/189 lbs. Herbert was eliminated when Aminashvili fell short of the finals.

Champions also crowned on Friday were Abdulrashid Sadulaev of Russia and Haji Aliyev of Azerbaijan. Both wrestlers repeated as champions. Sadulaev is just 19 years old.

The sixth and final day of the event is set for Saturday in Las Vegas. American freestyle wrestlers Tony Ramos, James Green, Jordan Burroughs and Zach Rey are scheduled to compete.

Burroughs is an Olympic gold medalist, two-time World champion and three-time World medalist. Ramos is competing in his second Worlds. Green and Rey are competing in their first World Championships.

2015 World Championships
Sept. 7-12
Orleans Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

Medal winners

Women’s freestyle

60 kg/132 lbs.
Gold – Oksana Herhel (Ukraine)
Silver – Tserenchim Sukhee (Mongolia)
Bronze – Dzhanan Manolova (Bulgaria)
Bronze – Leigh Jaynes-Provisor (USA)

Men’s freestyle

61 kg/134 lbs.
Gold – Haji Aliyev (Azerbaijan)
Silver – Nomin Batbold (Mongolia)
Bronze – Vladimir Dubov (Bulgaria)
Bronze – Vasyl Shuptar (Ukraine)

86 kg/189 lbs.
Gold – Abdulrashid Sadulaev (Russia)
Silver – Selim Yasar (Turkey)
Bronze – Sandro Aminashvili (Georgia)
Bronze – Alireza Karimimachiani (Iran)

97 kg/213 lbs.
Gold – Kyle Snyder (USA)
Silver – Abdusalam Gadisov (Russia)
Bronze – Khetag Gazumov (Azerbaijan)
Bronze – Pavlo Oliinyk (Ukraine)

Finals matchups

Women’s freestyle

60 kg/132 lbs.
Oksana Herhel (Ukraine) dec. Tserenchim Sukhee (Mongolia), 10-7

Men’s freestyle

61 kg/134 lbs.
Haji Aliyev (Azerbaijan) won by tech. fall over Nomin Batbold (Mongolia), 10-0

86 kg/189 lbs.
Abdulrashid Sadulaev (Russia) dec. Selim Yasar (Turkey), 6-0

97 kg/213 lbs.
Kyle Snyder (USA) dec. Abdusalam Gadisov (Russia), 5-5 criteria

U.S. performances

Women’s freestyle

60 kg/132 lbs. – Leigh Jaynes-Provisor, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army) – BRONZE MEDAL
WIN Madina Bakbergenova (Kazakhstan), tech. fall 10-0
WIN Emese Barka (Hungary), 8-5
LOSS Oksana Herhel (Ukraine), fall 0:18
WIN Irina Petr Netreba (Azerbaijan), 4-4 criteria

Men’s freestyle

61 kg/134 lbs. – Reece Humphrey, Columbus, Ohio (New York AC)
WIN Daulet Niyazbekov (Kazakhstan), 11-11 criteria
LOSS Nomin Batbold (Mongolia), 0-6
LOSS Bajrang (India), fall 5:09

86 kg/189 lbs. – Jake Herbert, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC)
LOSS Sandro Aminashvili (Georgia), 1-6

97 kg/213 lbs. – Kyle Snyder, Woodbine, Md. (Titan Mercury WC) – GOLD MEDAL
WIN Pavlo Oliinyk (Ukraine), 2-1
WIN Radoslaw Baran (Poland), 8-0
WIN Jose Diaz (Venezuela), tech. fall 11-1
WIN Abbas Tahan (Iran), 6-3
WIN Abdusalam Gadisov (Russia), 5-5 criteria