USA Wrestling FLASH: Pico wins bro...

FLASH: Pico wins bronze at Senior-level Soslan Andiev International in Russia

Oct. 24, 2014, 8:02 p.m. (ET)

Photos of 70 kg awards stand presentation with Aaron Pico getting his bronze courtesy of Valentin Kalika as well as

VLADIKAVKAZ, Russia – Aaron Pico (Whittier, Calif./Titan Mercury WC), the 18-year-old Junior World silver medalist, won a bronze medal in the respected Soslan Andiev International on Friday.

Pico won four of his five matches against athletes from across Russia, all by technical fall. His only loss came to the eventual runner-up, Magomed Khizriev of Dagestan, then bounced back with three straight wins to get the bronze and earn his spot on the podium.

In his bronze-medal bout, Pico earned a technical fall over a Russian athlete from the Kabardin Region.

The tournament is attended by over 250 wrestlers from all over Russia, as well as athletes from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, USA, Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Pico’s personal coach, Valentin Kalika, made the following post on his Facebook page about Aaron’s performance today in Russia.

“Today I am very proud of my wrestling son. He wrestled in the Senior division in the very respectable international Soslan Andiev tournament, up a weight category at 70 kg, with injured ribs and placed third. He is American but the Russian people respected him so much for his aggressive style and technique. Today he became a hero in Ossetia. Congratulations Aaron.”

This is Pico’s second Senior-level international medal, to go with a silver medal at the Grand Prix of Spain in July.

Pico first received international attention when he won the FILA Cadet World gold medal in 2013.

Special thanks to, Coach Valentin Kalika, and Craig Sesker for information used in this report.

At Vladikavkaz, Russia, October 24

Men’s freestyle medalists

57 kg
1 Garik Barseghyan (Armenia)
2 Artak Hovhannisyan (Armenia)
3 Magomed Zubairov (Dagestan)
3 Andrey Komar (Belarus)

61 kg
1 Atsamaz Koniev (Alanya)
2 Shamil Lobsters (Dagestan)
3 Uruzbeg Tomartov (Alanya)
3 Elbrus Bolotaev (Alanya)

65 kg
1 Ruslan Pliev (Alanya)
2 Rustam Akhmedov (Dagestan)
3 Meyrzhan Ashyrov (Kazakhstan)
3 Victor Sereda (Belarus)

70 kg
1 Magomed Sayipov (Dagestan)
2 Magomed Khizriev (Dagestan)
3 Aaron Pico (USA)
3 Arthur Bichenov (Alanya)

U.S. men's freestyle performance

70 kg/154 lbs. - Aaron Pico (Whittier, Calif./Titan Mercury WC), bronze medal
WIN (Ossetia), tech. fall
LOSS Magomed Khizriev (Dagestan)
WIN (Dagestan), tech. fall
WIN (Chechnya), tech. fall
WIN (Kabardin), tech. fall