Photo: Adam Coon pumped up after securing a spot in the World finals. Photo by Robbert Wijtman.
BUDAPEST, Hungary – Adam Coon earned his fourth pin of the day to soar into the 130 kg World Championships finals and guarantee the U.S. Greco-Roman program its first Senior World medal since 2015.
"I am in the World Championships finals. This is fun!” Coon said. “I am just wrestling tough, wrestling smart. I am trying to keep my pace and trying to get to a higher level of intensity. I am trying to get my stuff, but I am able to capitalize when he gets out of position."
A Junior World medalist in both freestyle and Greco-Roman, Coon faced off against 2018 Asian Games bronze medalist and 2013 Junior World bronze medalist Min-Seok Kim of Korea.
Coon scored first on a passivity from Kim but was not able to capitalize on top. Moments later, Coon secured a body lock, but Kim was hit with a caution and two for fleeing the hold to give Coon a 3-0 lead at the break.
Shortly into the second period, Coon countered a throw with a body lock, running Kim to his back and picking up the fall at the 3:42 mark and earning a bid to the World finals.
On Sunday, Coon will take on three-time age-group World champion and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Sergey Semenov of Russia in the gold-medal match. Semenov won Junior World titles in 2013 and 2014 and most recently won the 2017 U23 World Championships.
Coon and Semenov met in the 2014 Junior World semifinals. Semenov took the match with an 8-0 technical fall.
"I wrestled him at Juniors and he throttled me. So I am ready to go to see how much better I have gotten," Coon said.
With a bid to the finals, Coon has now captured a World medal in three different age groups, winning Cadet freestyle gold in 2011 before tacking on Junior World bronzes in both freestyle and Greco in 2014.
Wrestling in the finals at 77 kg is World and Olympic silver medalist Tamas Lorincz of Hungary and two-time Russia Nationals champion Aleksandr Chekhirkin of Russia.
The 97 kg finals will feature 2013 Junior World champion Musa Evloev of Russia and 21-year-old Kiril Milov of Bulgaria.
As it is the final day of the competition, the schedule is different.
Repechage will begin at 1:30 p.m. local time (7:30 a.m. ET) with the medal matches following at 3:30 p.m. (9:30 a.m. ET). Fans can watch all the action live on Trackwrestling.com.
2018 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
at Budapest, Hungary
Tamas Lorincz (Hungary) dec. Hyeonwoo Kim (Korea), 3-1
Aleksandr Chekhirkin (Russia) tech. fall Alex Bjurberg Kessidis (Sweden), 11-0
Musa Evloev (Russia) dec. Artur Aleksanyan (Armenia), 3-1
Kiril Milov (Bulgaria) dec. Mihail Kajala (Serbia), 3-0
Adam Coon (USA) fall Minseok Kim (Korea), 3:42
Sergey Semenov (Russia) dec. Heiki Nabi (Estonia), 2-0
77 kg: Aleksandr Chekhirkin (Russia) vs. Tamas Lorincz (Hungary)
97 kg: Musa Evloev (Russia) vs. Kiril Milov (Bulgaria)
130 kg: Adam Coon (USA) vs. Sergey Semenov (Russia)
U.S. Greco-Roman results
77 kg/169.5 lbs. - Kamal Bey, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids/OTC)
WIN Ridong Zhang (China), 9-0
WIN Reiner Jimenez Terry (Guatemala), 8-1
LOSS Elvin Mursaliyev (Azerbaijan), 6-2
97 kg/213.75 lbs. - G’Angelo Hancock, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
LOSS Peter Oehler (Germany), 6-3
130 kg/286 lbs. - Adam Coon, Fowlerville, Mich. (New York AC/Michigan RTC)
WIN Rafal Krajewski (Poland), fall 1:54
WIN Lingzhe Meng (China), fall 4:13
WIN Eduard Popp (Germany), fall 2:32
WIN Min-Seok Kim (Korea), fall 3:42
vs. Sergey Semenov (Russia)