Final U.S. World Team member to be set as Maroulis and Hedrick do battle at Lehigh on Saturday

By Taylor Miller, USA Wrestling | Oct. 05, 2018, 12:40 p.m. (ET)
The final member of the U.S. women’s freestyle World Team will be determined Saturday night as Helen Maroulis and Alex Hedrick will face off in a best-of-three matches special wrestle-off for the 57 kg spot at 6:30 p.m. ET on Flowrestling.org live from Lehigh University’s Grace Hall.

The Maroulis vs. Hedrick Championship Series was originally scheduled as part of Final X at Lehigh, held at Grace Hall on June 23, but the series was delayed due to an injury to Maroulis.

Below is background information on each athlete.

HELEN MAROULIS

One of the greatest American wrestlers in history, Maroulis seeks her eighth bid to the Senior World Championships.

In 2016, Maroulis made a gigantic mark in history, becoming the first U.S. woman to win an Olympic gold medal in wrestling, knocking off legendary wrestler, 13-time World champion and three-time Olympic champion Saori Yoshida of Japan.

A native of Rockville, Md., Maroulis bookended her Olympic title with World championships, winning her first one in 2015 at 53 kg and snagging her second World gold last year in Paris, France, at 58 kg.

In addition to her three World and Olympic gold medals, Maroulis also owns two other Senior World medals—silver from 2012 and bronze from 2014—and three Junior World medals, including one silver and two bronzes.

Nationally, Maroulis has been unbeatable, winning seven World Team Trials and six U.S. Open championships.

As a collegiate athlete, Maroulis also made history as she and her teammate Victoria Anthony became the first four-time WCWA champions in history, accomplishing the feat in 2014.

Currently, Maroulis trains out of the NYC RTC in New York City.

Maroulis’ World Championship experience
2017 Senior World Championships in Paris, France – GOLD
2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – GOLD
2015 Senior World Championships in Las Vegas, USA – GOLD
2014 Senior World Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan – BRONZE
2013 Senior World Championships in Budapest, Hungary – SEVENTH
2012 Women’s World Championships in Sherwood Park, Canada – SILVER
2011 Senior World Championships in Istanbul, Turkey – FIFTH
2011 Junior World Championships in Bucharest, Romania - SILVER
2010 Junior World Championships in Budapest, Hungary – BRONZE
2009 Junior World Championships in Ankara, Turkey - SEVENTEENTH
2008 Women’s World Championships in Tokyo, Japan – EIGHTH
2008 Junior World Championships in Istanbul, Turkey – BRONZE

ALEX HEDRICK

Putting together one of the best seasons of any U.S. athlete was Hedrick, who stormed onto the Senior scene virtually out of nowhere.

Hailing from Fair Oaks, Calif., Hedrick first turned heads, dominating her way to the 2018 WCWA finals, where she eventually took second to Simon Fraser teammate Dominique Parrish.

Since then, she has rattled off several impressive victories, winning the 2018 Senior U.S. Open, claiming a spot on the Junior World Team and wrestling her way to a Final X bid.

Hedrick, a two-time California state champion, had to battle up-and-coming talent Michaela Beck in all three finals.

Recently, Hedrick returned from the Junior World Championships, where she matched up with three-time age-group medalist Viktoria Vaulina of Russia in the first round. Vaulina won the bout, and unfortunately, Hedrick’s tournament ended when the Russian was unable to advance to the finals.

Hedrick’s World Championship experience:
2018 Junior World Championships in Trnava, Slovakia – did not place

57 kg/127.5 lbs. WOMEN

Helen Maroulis, New York, N.Y. (Sunkist Kids/NYC RTC)
College: Simon Fraser, Missouri Baptist
High School: Marquette, Mich.; Rockville, Md. (Colonel Zadock Magruder) Born: Sept. 19, 1991
• 2016 Olympic gold medalist
• The first U.S. woman to win an Olympic wrestling gold medal
• 2015 and 2017 World champion
• 2012 World silver medalist
• 2014 World bronze medalist
• Seven-time U.S. Senior World Team member
• Three-time Junior World medalist (2011 silver, 2008 & 2010 bronze)
• 2013 and 2015 World Cup champion
• 2011 Pan American Games champion
• 2012 Pan American Championships champion
• Six-time U.S. Open champion
• Four-time WCWA women’s college national champion for Simon Fraser

Alex Hedrick, Fair Oaks, Calif. (Titan Mercury WC)
College: Simon Fraser High School: Fair Oaks, Calif. (Bella Vista) Born: Feb. 19, 1999
• 2018 World Team Trials Challenge Tournament champion
• 2018 U.S. Open champion
• 2018 UWW Junior Nationals champion
• Third in 2017 UWW World Team Trials
• Second in 2018 WCWA Nationals for Simon Fraser
• Fourth in 2017 SFU International (Canada)
• Second in 2017 Girls Junior Folkstyle Nationals
• Second in 2016 Junior Nationals
• Two-time California state champion