Laurent qualifies for bronze-medal bout in women’s freestyle at Junior Worlds

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Aug. 14, 2019, 4:15 p.m. (ET)
Jayden Laurent (left) battles Meerim Zhumanazarova of Kyrgyzstan in the Junior World semifinals. Photo by Daniel Mitchell.

TALLINN, Estonia – Jayden Laurent (Denmark, Wis./Titan Mercury WC) has qualified to compete in a bronze-medal match at 68 kg/149.75 lbs. in women’s freestyle at the Junior World Championships on Wednesday night.

Laurent was defeated in the semifinals by Meerim Zhumanazarova of Kyrgyzstan by technical fall, 11-1.

Zhumanazarova led 3-0 at the break, scoring on three different stepouts. In the second period, Zhumanazarova scored a four-point takedown, and when a USA challenge was denied, gained another point for an 8-0 lead. Zhumanazarova and Laurent traded stepouts to make it 9-1. Another Zhumanazarova takedown closed out the technical fall at 11-1

Zhumanazarova is a three-time Asian Junior champion, and was a 2016 Cadet World bronze medalist.

Laurent was dominant in her Wednesday morning matches, beating Gulsezim Bukhayeva of Kazakhstan, 9-0 and pinning Martins Machado of Brazil in 3:18.

Laurent’s opponent for the bronze-medal match will be determined in the repechage rounds on Wednesday morning. The medal rounds, including Laurent’s match, will begin on Thursday at 6:00 p.m. Tallinn time (seven hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time zone).

Laurent has made the last two U.S. Senior National Teams, placing No. 3 on the ladder in 2018 and 2019. She was a 2019 U.S. Senior Open runner-up. Laurent won a 2019 WCWA national title at Lakeland University and is now with the Badger RTC.

Based upon the semifinal results, three more U.S. wrestlers were eliminated from being eligible for the repechage rounds on Thursday. There will be two repechage matches held to determine her opponent.

Alleida Martinez (Selma, Calif./Titan Mercury WC) was eliminated at 50 kg/110 lbs. after the wrestler who beat her, Lucia Yepez Guzman of Ecuador, was beaten by two-time Senior World champion Yui Susaki of Japan in the semifinals. Yepez needed to make the finals to pull Martinez back into repechage.

Alex Hedrick (Fair Oaks, Calif./Titan Mercury WC) was also knocked out at 55 kg/121 lbs., after Anastasia Blayvas of Germany, who beat Hedrick in the opening round, was beaten in the semifinals by Patrycja Gil of Poland.

Korinahe Bullock (Chahokia, Ill./Titan Mercury WC/McKendree Bearcat WC) also was out of the tournament at 76 kg/167.5 lbs. after the woman she lost to, Qian Jiang of China, was beaten in the semifinals by Cuba’s Milaimys Marin Portille.

The other U.S. athlete in the first group, Michaela Beck (New York, N.Y./New York AC/Hawkeye WC) at 59 kg/130 lbs., was out of the tournament after the morning session.

Laurent will be the only U.S. wrestler from the first group of women’s athletes who will be competing on Thursday. The second group of U.S. women have received their draws and will begin competition on Thursday morning at 10:30 a.m.

All of the action is live on Trackwrestling.

At Tallinn, Estonia

U.S. women’s freestyle results on Wednesday

50 kg/110 lbs.: Alleida Martinez, Selma, Calif. (Titan Mercury WC)
LOSS Lucia Yepez Guzman (Ecuador), 5-0

55 kg/121 lbs.: Alex Hedrick, Fair Oaks, Calif. (Titan Mercury WC)
LOSS Anastasia Blayvas (Germany), 10-2

59 kg/130 lbs: Michaela Beck, New York, N.Y. (New York AC/Hawkeye WC)
LOSS Ana Beatrice Nuernberger (Germany), pin 2:13

68 kg/149.75 lbs.: Jayden Laurent, Denmark, Wis. (Titan Mercury WC)
WIN Gulsezim Bukhayeva (Kazakhstan), 9-0
WIN Thamires Martins Machado (Brazil), pin 3:18
LOSS Meerim Zhumanazarova (Kyrgyzstan), tech fall 12-1
Bronze medal match – opponent to be determined Thursday morning

76 kg/167 lbs.: Korinahe Bullock, Chahokia, Ill. (Titan Mercury WC/McKendree Bearcat WC)
WIN Soeun Kim (Korea), tech fall 10-0
LOSS Qian Jiang (China), pin 2:45