Seven No. 1 nationally ranked stars reach semifinals at USMC Junior Women’s Nationals in Fargo

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | July 16, 2019, 8:35 p.m. (ET)
Emily Shilson of Minnesota nails a gut wrench on day one of the Junior Women's Nationals on Tuesday. Photo by Dave Peterson, Minnesota USA Wrestling.

FARGO, N.D. – One of the big things about the USMC Junior Women’s Nationals each summer is that the best girls in the nation come out to compete. With the largest field in history, this year is a perfect example that the top stars come out to scrap in Fargo.

The semifinals were set in the evening session in Fargo, and six of the No. 1 wrestlers in the most recent National Girls High School Rankings won in the quarterfinals. These six are like a who’s-who of high school girls wrestling.

All eyes are on No. 1 Emily Shilson of Minnesota, who is in the semifinals at 106 pounds against Jenavi Alejandro of Nevada. Shilson is already a five-time Fargo champion, with three Junior and two 16U titles under her belt. She is aiming for a record sixth title, attempting to match the record set by the great Teshya Alo of Hawaii.

Another star in the quarterfinals is No. 1 Tiare Ikei of Hawaii, who shocked the women’s scene in April when she won the title at the 2019 U.S. Senior Open. Ikei was a Cadet World medalist a year ago, and like Shilson, competed in last summer’s Youth Olympic Games. She draws Camille Fournier of Texas in the 117 pound finals.

Another No. 1, Alara Boyd of Indiana, is in the semifinals at 138 pounds, where she draws Ester Han of Missouri. Boyd has won two Cadet World bronze medals in her career.

Also ranked No. 1 is returning Junior Nationals champion Xochitl Mota-Pettis of Texas at 127, who will battle Amor Tuttle of Minnesota in the semifinals.

The other three No. 1 ranked athletes in the Junior National semifinals are Kennedy Blades of Illinois at 164, Elisa Robinson of Kansas at 180 and Olivia Brown of Oklahoma at 200. Blades and Brown are gunning for a “double title” this year, aiming to win titles in both the 16U and the Junior divisions in the same year.

All four of the returning Junior National champions have made the semifinals: Shilson and Mota-Pettis, plus Tristan Kelly of Colorado (164) and Gabrielle Holloway of Texas (225).

Kelly had a featured quarterfinal match against tough Texan Ashley Lekas, getting ahead early and winning 6-4. Kelly is ranked No. 2 nationally behind Blades, and Lekas entered Fargo with a No. 4 national ranking. Kelly’s semifinal opponent is Jennifer Curry of Arizona, while Holloway will face Jasmine Guerrero of California.

Five 2018 Junior National women’s runners-up are also in the semifinals this year: Sage Mortimer of Utah (100), Louisa Schwab of Illinois (132), Aine Drury of California (138), Jerzie Estrada of Colorado (144) and Jaycee Foeller of Missouri (180).

One of the highlighted quarterfinal matches came at 117 pounds, when 2018 Junior Nationals runner-up Phoenix Dubose of Washington met 2019 U16 Nationals champion Jennifer Soto of California. Dubose was up 2-1 and trying to secure a cradle when Soto won the scramble for a takedown and locked up a trapped arm gut wrench, turning Dubose multiple times for a 13-2 technical fall. In the national rankings, Soto was No. 4 at 117, while Dubose was No. 5 at 122.

Coming into the tournament there were nine women looking for a double title, by claiming both 16U Nationals and Junior Nationals the same year. After the quarterfinals, there are five left: Mortimer, Blades, Brown plus Faith Cole of Missouri (106) and Jennifer Soto of California (117).

The Junior Women’s Nationals returns on Wednesday morning at 9:00 a.m., with the semifinal round and the conclusion of the consolation matches. The championships finals are scheduled for 2:00 p.m.

At Fargo, N.D.

Women’s freestyle Semifinal pairings

Sage Mortimer (Utah) vs Amanda Newcomb (KS)
Rayana Sahagun (MI) vs Jessica Corredor (FL)

Emily Shilson (Minnesota) vs Jenavi Alejandro (Nevada)
Faith Cole (Missouri) vs Tehani Soares (Nevada)

Josie Bartishofski (Wisconsin) vs Nichole Moore (Kansas)
Montana DeLawder (Pennsylvania) vs Jaslynn Gallegos (Colorado)

Tiare Ikei (Hawaii) vs Camille Fournier (Texas)
Jennifer Soto (California) vs Molly Williams (Washington)

Gabrielle Skidmore (Wisconsin) vs Payton Stroud (Washington)
Nanea Estrella (Hawaii) vs Leilah Castro (Ohio)

Xochitl Mota-pettis (Texas) vs Amor Tuttle (Minnesota)
Lana Perez (Hawaii) vs Sydney Harper (Texas)

Kaylee Moore (Washington) vs Emma Walker (Tennessee)
Louisa Schwab (Illinois) vs Viktorya Torres (Washington)

Alara Boyd (Indiana) vs Esther Han (Missouri)
Aine Drury (California) vs Morgan Norris (Nevada)

Ivy Kraght (Washington) vs Mckenzie Cook (Alaska)
Annie N. Hua (California) vs Jerzie Estrada (Colorado)

Tiffani Baublitz (Pennsylvania) vs Alexandria Sanford (Washington)
Kiley Hubby (Washington) vs Brooke-lynn Rush (Missouri)

Kennedy Blades (Illinois) vs Mckenzie Samuels (New York)
Jennifer Curry (Arizona) vs Tristan Kelly (Colorado)

Kelani Corbett (Hawaii) vs Joanna Jones (New York)
Jaycee Foeller (Missouri) vs Elisa Robinson (Kansas)

Gabrielle Hamilton (Illinois) vs Juliannah Bolli (California)
Angela Buenrrostro (California) vs Olivia Brown (Oklahoma)

Gabrielle Holloway (Texas) vs Jasmine Guerrero (California)
Isabeau Shalack (Illinois) vs Hannah Francis (Texas)

Quarterfinal results

Sage Mortimer (Utah) tech. fall Estrella Dorado marin (Colorado), 12-0 1:23
Amanda Newcomb (Kansas) pin Isabella Morales (Washington), 4-4 4:06
Rayana Sahagun (Michigan) tech. fall Kennedy Javier (Hawaii), 10-0 4:24
Jessica Corredor (Florida) tech. fall Jolie Lucas (Alaska), 14-3 2:56

Emily Shilson (Minnesota) tech. fall Nikoly Dos santos (North Carolina), 10-0 0:28
Jenavi Alejandro (Nevada) tech. fall Isabella Garcia (New York), 10-0 2:52
Faith Cole (Missouri) tech. fall Greta Gustafson (California), 10-0 3:12
Tehani Soares (Nevada) pin Ava Bayless (Pennsylvania), 11-6 5:49

Josie Bartishofski (Wisconsin) tech. fall Trinity Berry (Virginia), 18-7 4:53
Nichole Moore (Kansas) dec. Torieonna Buchanan (Indiana), 6-5
Montana Delawder (Pennsylvania) dec. Alexis Janiak (Illinois), 10-2
Jaslynn Gallegos (Colorado) pin Nayeli Hernandez (Texas), 4-0 0:24

Tiare Ikei (Hawaii) tech. fall Israel Resendez (Colorado), 10-0 0:56
Camille Fournier (Texas) tech. fall Amani Jones (Georgia), 12-3
Jennifer Soto (California) tech. fall Phoenix Dubose (Washington), 13-2 4:36
Molly Williams (Washington) pin Adriana Dorado marin (Colorado), 6-2 2:37

Gabrielle Skidmore (Wisconsin) dec. Riley Dalrymple (New York), 11-3
Payton Stroud (Washington) tech. fall Brelane Huber (Idaho), 14-3 5:43
Nanea Estrella (Hawaii) tech. fall Ally Fitzgerald (New York), 17-6 5:11
Leilah Castro (Ohio) pin Kelly Escamilla (California), 10-4 2:21

Xochitl Mota-pettis (Texas) pin Asia Nguyen-smith (Illinois), 18-5 5:01
Amor Tuttle (Minnesota) pin Waipuilani Beauchamp (Hawaii), 7-4 3:51
Lana Perez (Hawaii) tech. fall Solana Mottola (California), 12-2 2:29
Sydney Harper (Texas) dec. Mia Macaluso (New York), 6-6

Kaylee Moore (Washington) tech. fall Tiare Carlson (Hawaii), 16-6 3:33
Emma Walker (Tennessee) pin Nonnie Justice (Missouri), 8-0 1:26
Louisa Schwab (Illinois) tech. fall Elleni Johnson (Utah), 10-0 3:19
Viktorya Torres (Washington) tech. fall Avia Bibeau (Pennsylvania), 11-0 2:03

Alara Boyd (Indiana) dec. Chloe Ogden (Florida), 9-4
Esther Han (Missouri) inj. Def. Lexie Basham (Texas), 7-6 2:41
Aine Drury (California) pin Sara Sulejmani (Illinois), 5-2 1:42
Morgan Norris (Nevada) tech. fall Maggie Palmore (Maryland), 10-0 2:43

Ivy Kraght (Washington) dec. Tiyahna Askew (Georgia), 9-1
Mckenzie Cook (Alaska) tech. fall Jacquelyn Font (Florida), 10-0 2:53
Annie n. Hua (California) tech. fall Grace Miller (Oregon), 12-1 5:23
Jerzie Estrada (Colorado) pin Alexandria Hernandez (Washington), 4-0 0:40

Tiffani Baublitz (Pennsylvania) dec. Hunter Robinson (Texas), 6-1
Alexandria Sanford (Washington) dec. Morgan Mayginnes (Kansas), 8-7
Kiley Hubby (Washington) dec. Skylah Chakouian (Rhode Island), 9-0
Brooke-Lynn Rush (Missouri) dec. Maddie Konopka (California), 8-7

Kennedy Blades (Illinois) tech. fall Alycia Pidgeon (Washington), 10-0 0:54
Mckenzie Samuels (New York) pin Marta Jasperson (Wisconsin), 6-0 0:31
Jennifer Curry (Arizona) dec. Ariana Pereira (California), 7-4
Tristan Kelly (Colorado) dec. Ashley Lekas (Texas), 6-4

Kelani Corbett (Hawaii) dec. Daniella Seely (Texas), 10-2
Joanna Jones (New York) tech. fall Bailey Dennis (Oregon), 11-1 2:52
Jaycee Foeller (Missouri) tech. fall Folashade Akinola (California), 10-0 2:49
Elisa Robinson (Kansas) pin Shania Gowan (Florida), 9-0 1:56

Gabrielle Hamilton (Illinois) pin Millie Peach (Iowa), 8-0 0:35
Juliannah Bolli (California) tech. fall Persephone Sandoval (Montana), 11-0 5:22
Angela Buenrrostro (California) pin Elizabeth Saleapaga (California), 8-2 2:41
Olivia Brown (Oklahoma) pin Hollie Espinoza (California), 7-0 2:09

Gabrielle Holloway (Texas) pin Ashley Tapp (Texas), 8-0 4:36
Jasmine Guerrero (California) pin Madeleine Wadesisi (Ohio), 4-0 1:44
Isabeau Shalack (Illinois) pin Kyleigh Haney (Georgia), 2-0 1:13
Hannah Francis (Texas) pin Kathleen Janis (Utah), 5-0 1:14