Update: Emily Shilson becomes first U.S. wrestler to win Youth Olympic Games title; Tiare Ikei places sixth

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Oct. 13, 2018, 4:58 p.m. (ET)
Emily Shilson of the USAstands on the Youth Olympic Games podium with her gold medal.
Second photo: Coach Sam Barber, Emily Shilson and Tiare Ikei pose together with the flag of the United States.
Photos courtesy of Sam Barber and USA Wrestling delegation.

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – It was a historic day for USA Wrestling, as Emily Shilson of Maple Grove, Minn. became the first U.S. wrestler to win a gold medal at the Youth Olympic Games with her victory at 43 kg on Saturday at the Asian Pavillion.

Shilson, who was a Cadet World champion earlier this summer, defeated 2017 Cadet World bronze medalist Simran Simran of India in the Youth Olympic Games gold-medal finals, 11-6. Shilson jumped out to a big 9-2 lead at the break, then closed out the victory in the second-period.

This is the second time this year that Shilson had beaten Simran, to go along with a 10-0 technical fall in the quarterfinals of the 2018 Cadet World Championships in Zagreb, Croatia.

“I felt I started well today. I set a game plan and was able to stick with it throughout the tournament. In the finals, I lost my focus a little bit. But that is OK, because I know that I still have a lot of stuff to work on going forward. It meant a lot to win ,” said Shilson

With the victory, Shilson became the first member of Team USA in any sport to win a gold medal at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games, another tremendous milestone on day six of the competition.

“It is cool representing the wrestlers on Team USA. For a wrestler to win the first gold medal for the United States is a great honor. The Youth Olympics has been a great experience. There are so many different countries and sports here. Everyone here has similar goals as I have, to be the best in the world,” said Shilson.

Shilson won all four of her Group B matches on Saturday morning to qualify for the championship finals. Included in her pool victories was a third-round 12-1 technical fall over 2018 Cadet World silver medalist Shahana Nazarova of Azerbaijan, a rematch of the Cadet World finals also won by Shilson.

Her other pool victories included a pin of 2018 Youth African Games champion Christianah Tolulope Ogansanya of Nigeria, a technical fall over Heloisa Elena Martinez of Brazil and a 5-0 decision over 2018 European Cadet bronze medalist Justine Fanny Vigouroux of France. Shilson is a high school senior this year.

“She came into this event with a target on her back, having won the World Championships in Croatia. She made several adjustments and dealt with many adjustments from her opponents. In the finals, the girl from India made some nice adjustments, and Emily wrestled through those positions and scored. It was an outstanding world-class effort by Emily and we are very proud of her,” said U.S. Youth Olympic Games coach Sam Barber.

Coming into today’s finals, the USA has won five previous Youth Olympic Games medals. Included were four silver medals, won by Mason Manville (Greco-Roman 69 kg in 2014), Cade Olivas (men’s freestyle 46 kg in 2014), Daton Fix (men’s freestyle 54 kg in 2014) and Jordan Rogers (men’s freestyle, 76 kg in 2010). At the 2010 Youth Olympic Games, Jenna Burkert won a bronze medal in the YOG Beach Wrestling tournament.

“It was a great team effort here today, with Tiare Ikei also competing very well. Emily’s father Chad is an outstanding coach and helped with the team today. Clarissa Chun is also here and part of our team effort working with our wrestlers,” said Barber.

2018 World bronze medalist Tiare Ikei of Honolulu, Hawaii finished sixth at 49 kg, after dropping her
fifth-place match to 2018 European Cadet silver medalist Roza Szenttamasi of Hungary, 3-0. Szenttamasi led 1-0 at the break, and added two more second-period points to secure the win.

A 2016 Cadet World bronze medalist, Ikei finished her Group A competition on Saturday morning with a 2-2 record. She scored victories over 2018 Pan American Cadet silver medalist Maria Jose Mosquera Rojas of Venezuela and 2018 Asian Cadet bronze medalist Nilufar Raimova of Kazakhstan. Her losses were to 2018 Cadet World bronze medalist Natalia Varakina of Belarus and 2018 Asian Cadet silver medalist Shokina Akhmedova of Uzbekistan.

Ikei, also a high school senior, is currently a resident athlete at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

The USA has two men competing in freestyle on Sunday, by Robert Howard of Cranford, N.J. at 55 kg/121 lbs. and Carson Manville of Kingston, Pa. at 65 kg/143 lbs. Their draw in pool competition was set on Friday, and their opponents are listed below.

YOUTH OLYMPIC GAMES
At Buenos Aires, Argentina, October 13

U.S. Women’s freestyle performances


43 kg/94.5 lbs - Emily Shilson, Maple Grove, Minn., gold medal
WIN Justine Fanny Vigouroux (France), 5-0
WIN Heloisa Elena Martinez (Brazil), tech. fall 10-0
WIN Shahana Nazarova (Azerbaijan), tech. fall 12-1
WIN Christianah Tolulope Ogansanya (Nigeria) pin
WIN Simran Simran (India), 11-6

49 kg/108 lbs. - Tiare Ikei, Honolulu, Hawaii, 6th place
WIN Maria Jose Mosquera Rojas (Venezuela), tech. fall 12-2
LOSS Natalia Varakina (Belarus), 6-0
LOSS Shokina Akhmedova (Uzbekistan), pin
WIN Nilufar Raimova (Kazakhstan), 8-0
LOSS Roza Szenttamasi (Hungary), 3-0

Women’s freestyle results

43 kg
Gold – Emily Shilson (USA)
Silver - Simran Simran (India)
Bronze –Shahana Nazarova (Azerbaijan)
4th - Enkhzul Batbaatar (Mongolia)
5th – Justine Fanny Vigouroux (France)
6th – Maria Leorda (Moldova)
7th – Sara Fouda Farouk Mahmoud (Egypt)
8th – Heloisa Elena Martinez (Brazil)
9th – Christianah Tolulope Ogansanya (Nigeria)
10th – Ella Mae Derry (New Zealand)
Gold bout – Shilson dec. Simran, 11-6
Bronze bout - Nazarova dec. Batbaatar, 7-6

49 kg
Gold – Emma Jonna Malmgren (Sweden)’
Silver - Shokhida Akhmedova (Uzbekistan)
Bronze – Natalia Varakina (Belarus)
4th - Zineb Ech-Chaki (Morocco)
5th – Roza Szenttamasi (Hungary)
6th – Tiare Ikei (USA)
7th – Maria Jose Mosquera Rojas (Venezuela)
8th – Paulina Jean Duanas (Guam)
9th – Nilufar Raimova (Kazakhstan)
10th – Sopealai Sim (Cameroon)
Gold Bout –Malmgren pin Akhmedova
Bronze Bout – Varakina tech. fall Ech-Chaki, 12-1

57 kg
Gold – Nonoka Ozaki (Japan)
Silver - Anna Hella Szel (Hungary)
Bronze – Anastasia Blayvas (Germany)
4th - Irina Ringaci (Moldova)
5th – Andrea Lopez Martinez (Mexico)
6th –Mayra Parra Alvarez (Venezuela)
7th – Hala Wael Imbabi Ahmed (Egypt)
8th – Mansi Mansi (India)
9th – Kaetlyn-Rae Quintanilla (Guam)
10th – Lydia Todia (Cameroon)
Gold bout – Ozaki tech. fall Szel, 10-0
Bronze bout - Blayvas dec. Ringaci, 6-3

65 kg
Gold – Xinru Zhou (China)
Silver - Oksana Chudyk (Ukraine)
Bronze – Oyun-Erdene Tamir (Mongolia)
4th - Sunmisola Idowu Balogun (Nigeria)
5th – Viktoria Vesso (Estonia)
6th – Amina Capezan (Romania)
7th – Zaineb Sghaier (Tunisia)
8th –Yetzis Ramirez Marquez (Cuba)
9th – Sandra Escamilla Menchaca (Mexico)
10th – Natacha Veronique Nabaina (Cameroon)
Gold bout – Zhou tech. fall Chudyk, 10-0
Bronze bout –Tamir tech. fall Balogun, 15-4

73 kg
Gold– Milaimys Marin Potrille (Cuba)
Silver - Linda Marilina Machuca (Argentina)
Bronze –Yuka Kagami (Japan)
4th - Kseniya Szibuk (Belarus)
5th – Julia Fridlund (Sweden)
6th – Svetlana Oknazarova (Uzbekistan)
7th – Khadija Jlassi (Tunisia)
8th – Anika White (Canada)
9th – Vahide Nur Gok (Turkey)
10th – Iona Ludgate (American Samoa)
Gold bout – Marin Potrille (Cuba) pin Marilina Machuca
Bronze bout - Kagami dec. Szibuk, 8-0