USA Wrestling Shilson becomes firs...

Shilson becomes first U.S. woman to win U23 World gold medal, Welker takes bronze

By Joe Wedra, USA Wrestling | Nov. 04, 2021, 4:17 p.m. (ET)

Photo of Emily Shilson by Kadir Caliskan/United World Wrestling

BELGRADE, Serbia – Emily Shilson became the first U.S. woman to win a U23 World gold medal on Thursday, winning via fall in her finals match at 50 kg to become the champion at the 2021 U23 World Championships. Kylie Welker, at 76 kg, also had a standout performance, winning a bronze medal.

Shilson secured her fourth career age-group World medal with her win in the finals over Shivani Pawar of India. Shilson was taken down first in the match to give Pawar the early lead, but Shilson wasted no time re-taking momentum and winning her gold medal with style. She threw Pawar to her back and then kept her on the mat, finishing up a pin to win the first medal for Team USA at the event.

Shilson went 4-0 this weekend, winning two matches via fall. This win marks her second age-group World title of the year – she also won a Junior World title at 50 kg in August. The Augsburg wrestler is now a three-time age-group World champion, as she also won gold at the 2017 Cadet World Championships.

Welker followed Shilson’s lead in the 76 kg bronze medal bout, taking third with a pin of her own. After taking down Ecuador’s Genesis Reasco Valdez early, Welker defended a shot and then threw Valdez to her back, finishing up a fall to take bronze.

Welker, the 2021 Junior World champion at 76 kg, won her third career age-group World medal here in Belgrade. She was on the U23, Junior and Senior World teams for the U.S. this year. She went 3-1 this week, knocking off both Valdez and Russia’s Evgeniia Zakharchenko, a two-time Junior World silver medalist.

“Kylie and Emily have made their marks this season,” USA Wrestling National Women’s Developmental Coach Jessica Medina said. “Their drive, hard work and dedication has paid off and I’m hopeful they will continue to improve and build on their successes.”

Women’s freestyle action in Serbia continues tomorrow, as Kayla Marano (72 kg) will wrestle for bronze tomorrow night. The session begins at 6:00 p.m. local time in Belgrade, which is five hours ahead of U.S. eastern time.

All matches can be watched live on FloWrestling.

Women’s freestyle Group One medal match results

50 kg
GOLD: Emily Shilson (USA) fall Shivani Pawar (India), 1:38
BRONZE: Mariia Tiumenkova (Russia) tech Anastasiya Yanotava (Belarus), 10-0
BRONZE: Stefania Priceputu (Romania) dec. Sarra Hamdi (Tunisia), 2-1

55 kg
GOLD: Andreea Ana (Romania) dec. Viktoriia Vaulina (Russia), 2-2
BRONZE: Eda Tekin (Turkey) dec. Ainur Ashimova (Kazakhstan), 6-5
BRONZE: Anju (India) tech Virginie Kaze Gascon (Canada), 17-6

59 kg
GOLD: Anhelina Lysak (Poland) dec. Solomila Vynnyk (Ukraine), 7-2
BRONZE: Anna Szel (Hungary) dec. Anastasiia Sidelnikova (Russia), 3-3
BRONZE: Krystsina Sazykina (Belarus) tech Ramina Mamedova (Latvia), 10-0

68 kg
GOLD: Koumba Larroque (France) dec. Vusala Parfianovich (Russia), 3-0
BRONZE: Delgermaa Enkhsaikhan (Mongolia) fall Sophia Schaefle (Germany), 5:16
BRONZE: Oksana Chudyk (Ukraine) dec. Alyvia Fiske (USA), 3-3

76 kg
GOLD: Aiperi Medet Kyzy (Kazakhstan) dec. Tatiana Renteria (Columbia), 3-1
BRONZE: Enrica Rinaldi (Italy) fall Dilnaz Mulkinova (Kazakhstan), 1:16
BRONZE: Kylie Welker (USA) fall Genesis Reasco Valdez (Ecuador), 2:14

U.S. women’s freestyle Group One results

50 kg: Emily Shilson (Maple Grove, Minn./Titan Mercury WC/Twin Cities RTC), gold medal
WIN Lisa Ersel (Germany), 10-0
WIN Stefania Priceputu (Romania), fall 0:49
WIN Sarra Hamdi (Tunisia), forfeit
WIN Shivani Pawar (India), 1:38

55 kg: Alex Hedrick (Fair Oaks, Calif./Titan Mercury WC), seventh place
WIN Zainab Barrie (Sierra Leone), forfeit
LOSS Anju (India), 11-8

59 kg: Michaela Beck (New York, N.Y./Wisconsin RTC/Sunkist Kids WC), ninth place
LOSS Krystsina Sazykina (Belarus), 6-1

68 kg: Alyvia Fiske (Napa, Calif./Titan Mercury WC), fifth place
WIN Nesrin Bas (Turkey), fall 5:58
LOSS Koumba Larroque (France), 12-0
WIN Monika (India), 5-4
LOSS Oksana Chudyk (Ukraine), 3-3

76 kg: Kylie Welker (Franksville, Wisc./Titan Mercury WC), bronze medal
WIN Evgeniia Zakharchenko (Russia), 6-5
WIN Kamile Gaucite (Lithuania), fall 1:33
LOSS Aiperi Medet Kyzy (Kyrgystan), 8-0
WIN Genesis Reasco Valdez (Ecuador), fall 2:14

Women’s freestyle team standings after five weights
1. Russia, 65
2. USA, 62
3. Ukraine, 51
4. India, 49
5. Romania, 42
6. Poland, 29
7. Kazakhstan, 26
8. (tie) France, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus, Turkey, 25