Gray wins fan vote for USOC Female Athlete of the Month, as Taylor takes third in men’s vote

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Nov. 06, 2018, 11:46 p.m. (ET)
Adeline Gray runs with the American flag after winning the 2018 World gold medal at 76 kg.

2018 World champion wrestler Adeline Gray won the fan vote for the Female Athlete of the Month, as part of the U.S. Olympic Committee’s Team USA Awards presented by Dow, Best of October.

Gray received 28% of the vote, edging out taekwondo athlete Anastasija Zolotic, who finished with 25%. The final tally for the other three finalists were Courtney Conlogue of surfing with 25%, Grace Stark of track and field at 11% and Ilona Maher of rugby sevens with 11%.

The online fan voting accounts for 50 percent of the final tally for this award, with the other 50 percent coming from votes received from NGB representatives and select members of the media.

Gray has not yet won the award. The USOC will calculate the other 50% of the vote and announce the winner of the award shortly.

The voting was contested over five days, and Gray was in second place much of the voting, but the wrestling community rallied on the last day and a half when Gray took the lead.

Gray won the gold medal at 76 kg at the World Wrestling Championships in Budapest, Hungary on October 24. It was her fourth career World gold medal, matching the record for the most by an American wrestler, tied with John Smith, Tricia Saunders and Jordan Burroughs.

Gray was victorious in one of the most challenging weight classes in the tournament, winning four matches against top stars on the way to victory at an Olympic weight class. Gray opened with a 10-0 technical fall over 2015 World bronze medalist Epp Mae of Estonia, avenging a loss from earlier in the year. In the second period, she pinned 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Elmira Syzdykova of Kazakhstan. In the semifinals, Gray defeated 2016 Olympic champion Erica Wiebe of Canada, 3-1. In the gold-medal finals, Gray scored an impressive 13-1 technical fall over 2017 World champion Yasemin Adar of Turkey.

Gray has now won six World medals in her amazing career. She was also a member of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team. Gray was one of four U.S. women wrestlers to win medals in Budapest, helping lead Team USA to a World trophy by placing third in the team standings.

Coming in third in the Male Athlete of the Month voting was 2018 World champion David Taylor of State College, Pa., the 86 kg champion in men’s freestyle at the World Championships. Taylor finished with 14% of the vote, behind Nathan Chen of figure skating at 42% and Trenton Cowles of archery at 40%. Closing out the men’s vote were Jerome Smith of weightlifting at 3% and Bjorn Fratangelo of tennis at 1%.

Taylor is still eligible to win the overall award, where 50% of the vote comes from NGB representatives and selected media.

USA Wrestling thanks all the wrestling fans and others who devoted the time and energy to vote for Adeline Gray and David Taylor in the fan online voting. Because people could vote as many times as they wish, it took a tremendous effort by a lot of people supporting the wrestlers. Thank you for your participation.

Fan Voting for USOC Female Athlete of the Month
1. Adeline Gray (Denver, Colorado), Wrestling – 28%
2. Anastasija Zolotic (Largo, Florida), Taekwondo, - 25%
3. Courtney Conlogue (Santa Ana, California), Surfing – 25%
4. Grace Stark (White Lake, Michigan), Track and Field – 11%
5. Ilona Maher (Burlington, Vermont), Rugby Sevens – 11%

Fan Voting for USOC Male Athlete of the Month
1. Nathan Chen (Salt Lake City, Utah), Figure Skating – 42%
2. Trenton Cowles (Tarzana, California), Archery – 40%
3. David Taylor (State College, Pennsylvania) Wrestling – 14%
4. Jerome Smith (St. Louis, Missouri), Weightlifting – 3%
5. Bjorn Fratangelo (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), Tennis – 1%

Fan Voting for USOC Team of the Month
1. Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue, Figure Skating – 46%
2. April Ross and Alix Klineman, Beach Volleyball – 33%
3. U.S. Women’s National Team, Rugby Sevens – 21%

Note: Each National Governing Body may nominate one female, one male and one team per sport discipline. An internal nominating committee selects finalists to advance to the voting round.