USA Wrestling World champions Gray...

World champions Gray, Mensah-Stock, Winchester lead U.S. team at Women’s World Cup in Japan, Nov. 16-17

By Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling | Nov. 13, 2019, 11:05 a.m. (ET)

Tamyra Mensah-Stock of the USA celebrates her 2019 World gold medal at 68 kg. Photo by Sandy Slater.

Video interview: National Coach Terry Steiner on Women’s World Cup

The United States is sending a strong team, including three 2019 World champions, to compete at the Women’s World Cup at the Nakadai Sports & Recreation Park Gymnasium in Narita, Japan, from November 16-17.

The World Cup is the annual international dual meet championships, featuring the World’s top women’s freestyle wrestling teams.

United World Wrestling extended invitations to the top-eight teams from the 2019 World Championships in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, to attend the 2019 Women's Wrestling World Cup. This year's event will feature six teams, however, after No. 6 Kazakhstan and No. 8 Azerbaijan withdrew from the competition.

The United States, which was third in the 2019 World Championships, drew into Group B, which also includes No. 2 Russia and No. 7 Mongolia. Group A features No. 1 Japan, No. 4 China and No. 5 Ukraine. Each nation will compete against the other teams in their group on Saturday, November 16. Based upon those results, the medal-match dual meets will be held on Sunday, November 17.

The USA team includes seven members of the 2019 U.S. Senior World Team, which placed third in the standings

Leading the way for the USA are 2019 World champions Jacarra Winchester (Colorado Springs, Colo./Titan Mercury WC/USOPTC) at 55 kg/121 lbs., Tamyra Mensah-Stock (Colorado Springs, Colo./Titan Mercury WC/USOPTC) at 68 kg/149.5 lbs. and Adeline Gray (Denver, Colo./New York AC) at 76 kg/167 lbs.

Gray is a five-time Senior World champion, the first American wrestler to reach that level of achievement. She has won seven Senior World medals in her career, and was a member of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team.

Mensah-Stock has won World medals the last two years, with a gold-medal in 2019 and a bronze-medal in 2018. She is also the only U.S. athlete to win the prestigious Ivan Yarygin Grand Prix three straight years.

Winchester was fifth in the 2018 World Championships, before returning in 2019 to claim the gold medal at the Worlds.

2018 World silver medalist Sarah Hildebrandt (Colorado Springs, Colo./New York AC/USOPTC), a three-time Senior World Team member, is competing at 53 kg/116.5 lbs. Other members of the 2019 Senior World Team on the team are five-time Senior World Team member Whitney Conder (Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army WCAP) 50 kg/110 lbs., plus two-time Senior World Team members Forrest Molinari (Iowa City, Iowa/Titan Mercury WC/Hawkeye WC) at 65 kg/143 lbs. and Victoria Francis (Litchfield, Ill./Titan Mercury WC) at 72 kg/158.5 lbs.

2012 Olympian and two-time Senior World Team member Kelsey Campbell (Tempe, Ariz./Sunkist Kids) will compete at 57 kg/125.5 lbs. Macey Kilty (Stratford, Wis./Sunkist Kids/EAP), a 2018 Cadet World champion and five-time age-group World medalist, will compete at 62 kg/136.5 lbs. Current Women’s National Team member Desiree Zavala (Grandview, Wash./Wayland Baptist) will enter at 59 kg/130 lbs.

The USA team had a week of training at the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Center getting ready for the event.

“We’ve had a great week of training. We have been focusing on the teams in front of us, on the way to the World Cup title. We spent a day on each team, breaking down their tendencies and some of the things that they do. We still have to get out there and do our jobs. We have a strong team and are excited about it,” said National Women’s Coach Terry Steiner.

The USA opens with Russia at 12:00 noon, then faces Mongolia at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday. Based upon the results in Group B, the USA will have a medal match against a team from Group A on Sunday.

In the 2018 Women’s World Cup held in Takasaki, Japan, the United States placed fourth, falling to Mongolia 6-4 in the third-place match. In its pool competition, Team USA beat Canada 8-2 and Sweden, 9-1, but was defeated by Japan, 8-2. Japan won the 2018 Women’s World Cup title, defeating China in the finals, 6-4.

In the history of the Women’s World Cup, Japan has won 10 team titles, China won six team titles and the United States won one team title. Team USA was World Cup champions in 2003, defeating Japan in the finals 14-13.

The World Cup can be followed live on TrackWrestling for fans in the United States. Narita is 14 hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time zone.

At Narita, Japan, Nov. 16-17

U.S. roster

50 kg/110 lbs. - Whitney Conder, Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Army WCAP)
53 kg/116.5 lbs. - Sarah Hildebrandt, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC/USOPTC)
55 kg/121 lbs. - Jacarra Winchester, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Titan Mercury WC/USOPTC)
57 kg/125.5 lbs. - Kelsey Campbell, Tempe, Ariz. (Sunkist Kids)
59 kg/130 lbs. - Desiree Zavala, Grandview, Wash. (Wayland Baptist)
62 kg/136.5 lbs. - Macey Kilty, Stratford, Wis. (Sunkist Kids/EAP)
65 kg/143 lbs. - Forrest Molinari, Iowa City, Iowa (Titan Mercury WC/Hawkeye WC)
68 kg/149.5 lbs. - Tamyra Mensah-Stock (Colorado Springs, Colo./Titan Mercury WC/USOPTC)
72 kg/158.5 lbs. - Victoria Francis, Litchfield, Ill. (Titan Mercury WC)
76 kg/167 lbs. - Adeline Gray, Denver, Colo. (New York AC)
Women’s Team Leader – Jim Bennett, New Canaan, Conn.
National Women’s Coach - Terry Steiner, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Assistant National Women’s Coach - Clarissa Chun
World Cup Coach - Tadaaki Hatta, Elyria, Ohio
Medical: Courtney Smith, Franktown, Colo.
Referee: Matt Fiala, Merrick, N.Y.
USA Wrestling Executive Director – Rich Bender, Colorado Springs, Colo.
USA Wrestling National Staff – Associate Executive Director Les Gutches, Colorado Springs, Colo., Director of Corporate Partnerships Ryan Johnson, Colorado Springs, Colo., National Teams High Performance Manager Cody Bickley, Colorado Springs, Colo.,
U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee - Karen Cogan, Colorado Springs, Colo.

Narita is 14 hours ahead of U.S. Eastern time zone

Saturday, November 16
10:30 a.m. – Mat A: Japan vs. Ukraine / Mat B: Russia vs. Mongolia
12: 00 noon – Mat A: Russia vs. USA / Mat B: China vs. Ukraine
4:30 p.m. – Opening Ceremony
5:00 p.m. – Mat A: Japan vs. China / Mat B: USA vs. Mongolia

Sunday, November 17
10:30 a.m. – Finals for 5/6 places
1:00 p.m. – Finals for 3/4 places
2:30 p.m. – Championship Finals
4:00 p.m. – Award Ceremonies