Photo: Will Lewan hits a double in the quarterfinals vs. Budaev of Russia. Photo by Richard Immel.
ATHENS, Greece – In his World level debut, Will Lewan advanced to the 69 kg/152 lbs. semifinals of the 2017 Cadet World Championships in Athens, Greece, on Friday.
Lewan put up three solid wins this morning to guarantee himself the opportunity to wrestle for a Cadet World medal.
He opened against 2017 Cadet Asian bronze medalist Vishal Kaliramana of India. The only points in the match came from Lewan, who grabbed three first-period takedowns for a 6-0 win.
His next match ended with the same score against Alinur Takirov of Kyrgyzstan. Lewan collected two step outs, but his two second-period takedowns helped pad his lead and send him to the quarters.
His quarterfinal opponent Soslanbek Budaev of Russia couldn’t keep Lewan off his legs as the American scored four takedowns on the way to his 10-4 win to earn his spot in the semis.
Tonight, the American will face 2017 Cadet European bronze medalist Umur Aybey of Turkey.
Cole Skinner, Julian Tagg, Jordan Decatur and Gavin Hoffman were knocked out of the championship bracket on Friday morning and must await the semifinals, which will determined if they are pulled back into the repechage.
At 85 kg/187 lbs., Hoffman won his first match with ease over Daniel Losonczi of Hungary, who finished 11th at last year’s World tournament. Hoffman handled his opponent with three takedowns as the Hungarian was only able to score on a pair of step outs at the end of the bout. In his second match, Hoffman fell to 2017 Cadet Asian champion Abbas Foroutanrami from Iran in a 9-3 decision.
Decatur remains in the tournament, despite losing a controversial match in his first round at 58 kg/128 lbs. against two-time Cadet World silver medalist and two-time Cadet European champion Georgios Pilidis of Greece. Decatur took a quick 6-0 lead with a takedown and two turns with a leg lace. Just before the period ended, Pilidis earned four in a scramble. The Greek took over the lead, 7-6, within the final 10 seconds, but Decatur stayed resilient. It seemed he scored a takedown at the buzzer, however no points were awarded and Pilidis sneaked away with an 8-6 win.
In the first round at 50 kg/110 lbs., Tagg faced Danila Shyrokan of Belarus, who made his third appearance at the Cadet World Championships. Tagg rolled to an easy 10-3 win. In the next match, the American faced Mahir Mammadzada of Azerbaijan, who got out to a 9-0 lead. Tagg stormed back with eight unanswered points, but it was not enough as the Azeri took a 9-8 win.
U.S. lightweight Cole Skinner will depend on Azerbaijan’s Alihasan Amirli to bring him back into action. Amirli won both of his matches in the morning session with 11-0 technical falls.
The U.S. women’s freestyle team will close out its 2017 Cadet World Championships with Caitlyn Walker and Kelani Corbett wrestling in bronze-medal matches tonight.
The men’s freestyle semifinals will begin at 5:30 p.m. local time (10:30 a.m. ET), with the medal matches from women’s competition set for 6 p.m. (11 a.m. ET). Fans can find live streams and brackets on Trackwrestling.com.
2017 CADET WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
at Athens, Greece, Sept. 4-10
U.S. men’s freestyle draws
42 kg/92 lbs. – Cole Skinner, Middleton, Ohio (G2 World WA)
LOSS Alihasan Amirli (Azerbaijan), 11-0
50 kg/110 lbs. – Julian Tagg, Broadview Heights, Ohio (Seasons WC)
WIN Danila Shyrokan (Belarus), 10-3
LOSS Mahir Mammadzada (Azerbaijan), 9-8
58 kg/128 lbs. – Jordan Decatur, Akron, Ohio (Seasons WC)
LOSS Georgios Pilidis (Greece), 8-6
69 kg/152 lbs. – Will Lewan, Chicago, Ill. (Izzy Style)
WIN Vishal Kaliramana (India), 6-0
WIN Alinur Takirov (Kyrgyzstan), 6-0
WIN Soslanbek Budaev (Russia), 10-4
85 kg/187 lbs. – Gavin Hoffman, Cogan Station, Pa. (Bison Legend WC)
WIN David Losonczi (Hungary), 10-2
LOSS Abbas Ali Foroutanrami (Iran), 9-3