Match Notes From Final X NYC
Match Notes From Final X NYC
All the action of Final X presented by Tezos in real time from the Hulu Theater in New York City.
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Hot off the heels of Final X Stillwater, it's Final X NYC! Live from the Hulu Theater in the greatest city on planet earth.
I am here in the largest of all the apples, blogging the action for you in real time, the way blogging was meant to be done.
Please note that I will be grouping the series together, so the blog will not read chronologically. I think that way is better for everyone, though. And if you think differently, well too bad, it's my blog!
Results, scores and more can be found inside FloArena.
Blogging perch secured 🤩 pic.twitter.com/O96GfZG3FV— Andrew Spey (@SpeyWrestle) June 8, 2022
We start things off with the super early True Thirds. This is a wrestle-off to claim a spot on the national team by finishing top three on the ladder. A monetary stipend and increased travel and training opportunities come with that.
Just finished a stirring a capella rendition of the national anthem. Now a video about Beat the Streets and a welcome from the executive director of BtS NYC Brendan Buckley. And we're ready to go!
77 kg GR: Kamal Bey vs Britton Holmes
1st period: Holmes walks out to Johnny Cash's classic Ring of Fire. I don't recognize Bey's walkout song, but maybe it's Lil Wayne? Bey and Holmes are familiar foes who in fact have trained together for years, are both part of the Army World Class Athlete program, and are good friends off the mat. On the mat with a world team spot on the line is a different story. Bey goes down in par terre first, a point for Holmes. Holmes lifts Bey but Bey tries to counter on the feet. Holmes counters the counter and scores two. He lifts Bey again but Bey hip tosses him to his back and is looking for the fall. Holmes bellies out. Holmes also got the call on the last throw so that sequence went 1 for passivity, 2 for an exposure, then 4 feet to back for Holmes, followed by 2 for Bey. But it's challenged by Bey and he wins. The 4 point score is wiped off the board and Holmes now only leads 3-2. No more scores and the period ends.
2nd period: A slow, tactical start to the second period. Holmes gets dinged for passivity so the score is tied and Bey gets a turn on top. Bey wraps up a reverse lock and goes to take Holmes over. Looks like legs get tangled up and Holmes gets penalized for a leg foul. Holmes' corner challenges. Scoreboard says 5-3 Bey leading, but it'll be 3-3, Bey with criteria, if the challenge wins. Challnge loses so now its 6-3 for Bey and we go back to par terre. Bey gets Holmes back up in the air with a reverse lock and pile drives him into the mat, then secures the fall! Highlight reel-worthy finisher by Kamal Bey! So nice to have him back in the mix after a year or so out of action.
Kamal Bey (Army (WCAP)) VFA Britton Holmes (Army (WCAP)), 10-3 5:12
1st period: And round 2 is underway. Holmes charges forward but it's Bey that pivots in time to score the two points and he snags the early lead. Holmes and Bey proceed cautiously for the next couple minutes. 30 left in the period, still 2-0. And that's how the period ends.
2nd Period: Bey now 3 minutes from making his first world team since 2018. Holmes furiously trying to dig underhooks but Bey wrestles out of all of his holds. And Holmes is called for passivity and Bey sends him to the mat for par terre. Bey clinches a reverse lock but Holmes won't be budged. 3-0 back in neutral with 1:35 left to go. A pretty duck under with a little over a minute to go will give Bey a 5-0 lead and it's looking bleak for Holmes. And in the closing seconds Bey ices the match with a body lock feed to back. Our first world teamer to be crowned here in New York City is Kamal Bey!
Kamal Bey (Army (WCAP)) VSU Britton Holmes (Army (WCAP)), 10-0 6:00
72 kg WFS: Skylar Grote vs Amit Elor
1st period: Grote is representing the Beaver Dam RTC out of Oregon State while Elor is with the NYC RTC which is affiliated with Columbia University. Elor is also sponsored by Titan Mercury. Grote was a Pan Am champ this year, while Elor won U17 and U20 gold in 2021. Snap down go behind for Elor to score the first two points of the match. Elor is also the youngest wrestler at Final X at just 18 years old. Another takedown on the edge to make it 4-0 with 30 seconds to go in the period. Elor moving Grote around the mat with an underhook, driving her to the mat for another takedown on the opposite edge of the mat. 6-0 in short time. Period ends same score.
2nd period: Grote looking for her offense but Elor doesn't give her any openings. COunter for Elor and she's get another takedown on the edge, and is now a takedown away from an early finish to the bout. 90 seconds remaining on the clock. Headlock for Grote but its ruled a slip, back to neutral, still 8-0. Go behind by Elor and it's 10-0 tech fall, impressive Final X debut from Amit Elor!
Amit Elor (NYCRTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VSU Skylar Grote (Beaver Dam RTC / New York Athletic Club), 10-0 5:17
1st period: Elor one match away from being a teenaged world team member. It's happened before but its rare! Elor looking strong in the first period, controlling center. Underhook drives Grote to the ground and the first step out and point goes to Elor. A little bit later Grote will go on the activity clock. Elor picks up her second point. Shot by Grote and Elor is quite to down block and scoot behind for two more. It's 4-0 as we hit the break.
2nd period: Elor goes back to her underhook. Grote defends with a whizzer and she wrestles the position to a stalemate. Another go-behind from Elor and she extends her lead to 6. Grote's not giving up but her shots are hitting a brick wall and Elor spins behind for an 8-0 lead. And make it two straight 10-0 tech falls for Amit Elor, and the 2021 U17 and U20 world champ will look to add a senior-level medal to her collection in Serbia!
Amit Elor (NYCRTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VSU Skylar Grote (Beaver Dam RTC / New York Athletic Club), 10-0 5:33
65 kg MFS: Yianni Diakomihalis vs Evan Henderson
1st period: Both guys once trained in Ithaca together, Hendo now at the Ohio RTC while Yianni stayed with the Spartan Combat RTC and still has a year left of eligibility at Cornell. Yianni fires off a blast double, eventually driving Henderson out of bounds and picking up an early point. Yianni lunges for a single leg and runs down a takedown for a 3-0 lead. Yianni back in on a shot but Henderson chest wraps and counters twice for two exposures and four big points. He grabs the lead and now holds it on criteria as Yianni scrambles back on top for a reversal. 4-4 with 17 seconds left in the period. Period ends no more scores.
2nd period: Henderson fires off a shot right off the whistle. They go to the edge of the mat and Hendo wins the scramble and collects two and a 6-4 lead. Body lock now for Yianni and Hendo bails. Slick gut wrench for Yianni to make it 8-6. Henderson picks and ankle and steps over the next gut attempts and its 8-8 with less than 2 minutes to go, Henderson has the criteria advantages. Hendo attacking again and forces a step out for an outright 9-8 lead. One minute to go, still 9-8. Yianni in on a leg. Stalemated. 42 on the clock. Yianni level change, gets a step out to make it 9-9 with 24 on the clock. Hendo still holds criteria. Stoppage with 13 on the clock. Yianni in on a single, he picks Hendo up off the air and walks him to the edge. Yianni powers Henderson to the mat and scores one on the step out with just 2 seconds to go. Hendo's corner challenges. Challenge lost and now Yianni has a 2 point lead. 11-9 Yianni takes match one in a wild bout! So much craftiness from both wrestlers.
Yianni Diakomihalis (Spartan Combat RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VPO1 Evan Henderson (Ohio RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 11-9
1st period: Will round to live up to the action of round 1? Will we get a round 3 or will Yianni seal the deal in two?
87 kg GR: Alan Vera vs Timothy Young
1st period: Tough act to follow for these gentlemen. Vera originally from Cuba, he transferred federations and citizen ship just a couple years ago. Young was a wrestler for Old Dominion before they dropped their program. And Vera goes big, hitting a suplex early in the first period! Young rolls off his back and holds Vera on his back briefly but Vera rolls him right back again and collects the fall! Alan Vera one match away from making consecutive world teams!
Alan Vera (New York Athletic Club) VFA Timothy Young (Illinois), 4-0 1:00
1st period: Vera blitzed Young in round one, will Young have an answer in round 2. Takedown and quick gut for Vera in the first. Young steps over the second gut wrench attempt and nearly gets an exposure but will have to settle for one. It's 4-1 halfway through the first. Young gets dinged for passivity. It's 5-1 and Vera gets to work on top again. A lift and turn attempt ended up with just two more for a correct throw. Young defends and they come back up to neutral but it's 7-1. Young gets a front headlock but Vera walks him out to pull within one point of taking the series. And in the next sequence Vera gets another step out and that'll seal it up. Alan Vera wins two in a row and is going to Serbia!
Alan Vera (New York Athletic Club) VSU1 Timothy Young (Illinois), 9-1 2:49
125 kg MFS: Hayden Zillmer vs Nick Gwiazdowski
1st period: Zillmer a former NDSU Bison now training with the Gopher RTC in Minnesota, while Gwiz was an All-American at Binghamton, a two-time national champ, three-time finalist at NC State, and now an assistant coach at Cornell. Gwiz is also a two-time world medalist, scoring a bronze at the 2017 and 2018 world championships. Tactical first period, no scores after a minute. Now Gwiz strikes, grabbing a leg and running Zillmer out of bounds but not before securing the takedown and the early lead. One minute to go in the period. Still 2-0 at the break.
2nd period: No scores after 45 seconds, and Zillmer goes on the activity clock. Gwiz runs out the clock and gets another point. Now the Jack Pine Savage fires off a low shot, grabs Nick's leg but all we get is a stalemate. Good defense from Gwiz, he leads 3-0 with a minute to go. Zillmer in on a single leg again but he gets a brutal cross face from Gwiazdowski who then runs behind for another takedown and a 5-0 lead. Zillmer in on a shot as time expires. He was able to get to Gwiz a few times but Nick had the defense for him every time, and Gwiz is one step closer to making yet another world team!
Nick Gwiazdowski (Spartan Combat RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VPO Hayden Zillmer (Gopher Wrestling Club - RTC), 5-0
1st period: Coach Gwiz trying to join Yianni, his pupil at Cornell, on the senior world team. A tactical first 90 seconds and Zillmer goes on the clock first. Gwiz picks up a point and then ferociously attacks Zillmer's leg. Gwiz climbs up and secures the takedown. THe period ends with Gwiz in the lead by 3.
2nd period: Nick gets in on a leg but Zillmer defends. 2 minutes left and it's still 3-0. Zillmer keeps the pressure on but Gwiz keeps him from penetrating too deep. With 38 seconds left Zillmer gets his hands behind Gwiz's knees and drives him to the mat to make it 3-2. Zillmer stays on the attack and drives Gwiz out. They give him one and one for fleeing to its 4-3 (although Zillmer would have had criteria). And that's how the match end and we'll get a round 3!
Impressive come back for Hayden Zillmer the Jack Pine Savage!
Hayden Zillmer (Gopher Wrestling Club - RTC) VPO1 Nick Gwiazdowski (Spartan Combat RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 4-3
1st period: Slow first period, except for the hand fighting, that is very fast and brutal. Just no scores. Zillmer goes on the clock with 1:11 on the period. Gwiz gets the first point when the clock expires. A decent leg attack by Gwiz but no more scores as the period ends still 1-0.
2nd period: No doubt that double leg. Gwiz gets two more crucial points right off the whistle. Two minutes left in the match. ZIllmer in on a single leg but Gwiz sits the corner and crotch lifts Hayden over two more points and a 5-0 lead. 90 seconds left. Zillmer down a leg. He wants to come up off the mat with it but Gwiz keeps them down on the mat then wrestles free. hayden chases down the next shot though and its 5-2 with less than a minute to go. A double leg later and Zillmer and he's within a point. 20 seconds left. Zillmer circles in and pushes Gwiz off the mat. It's a 5-5 scores with criteria for Zillmer on last score. Just 9 seconds left! Gwiz lunging at Zillmer. Time runs out. Hayden Zillmer makes his first world team as a heavyweight! Incredible comeback! Gwiazdowski is crushed. He left it all on the mat, Zillmer just had a little bit more in the tank. What a series.
Hayden Zillmer (Gopher Wrestling Club - RTC) VPO1 Nick Gwiazdowski (Spartan Combat RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 5-5
67 kg GR: Alejandro Sancho vs Alston Nutter
1st period: Back to Greco as Eminem is pumped through the house speakers to usher in our next match. A couple of arm spins from Nutter are white paddled. No scores after 90 seconds and Sancho gets hit for passivity. One point for Nutter. Sancho defends and we go back to neutral, 1-0 lead for Alston. Now there's a flurry at the far edge of the mat. Nutter goes head over heels and Sancho picks up 4. Nutter regains his composure and shoves Sancho out of bounds to make it 4-2, Sancho with the lead but Sancho wants to challenge. Nutter definitely went to his back but on the replay perhaps you could argue that he had a hold was rule it a slip? And it's ruled that Sancho lost his hold so no points for his move and Sancho gets his step out and wins the challenge. Net result is a 2-0 lead for Sancho at the break.
2nd period: No scores after a minute and now Sancho is hit for passivity. Nutter gets a chance on top and scores a point. Sancho lifts Nutter then brings him down hard and transitions into a gut wrench. Oh wow on the replay you can see Nutter hyper extend his left arm as he was trying to stop the gut wrench. But Nutter shakes it off and they go back to par terre position. Sancho gets another gut wrench but Nutter steps over the next attempt and then lifts Sancho for a big feet to back turn. A reversal and a four pointer for Nutter to make it 7-5 with a 1:15 left on the clock. Sancho looking for an opening, but Nutter counters and drives Sancho to the mat for four more. Sancho's corner throws the challenge brick. It's 11-5. If Sancho loses the challenge he'll be down by 7 and 1 point aay from a tech fall. Sancho wins the challenge, its ruled merely a two point throw as Sancho had his knee down before Nutter forced him to his back. 9-5 is the score. 30 seconds to go. Sancho hip tosses Nutter for four and the lead via criteria! Or does he? Nutter challenges. Challenge lost so now Sancho leads 10-9. Nutter charges at Sancho but can't get a score and Sancho takes the match in a crazy back-and-forth bout!
Alejandro Sancho (Army (WCAP)) VPO1 Alston Nutter (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 10-9
1st period: Last match is a wild one. What's in store for round 2? We shall find out together! Sancho gets hit for passivity and gives up the point but steps over Nutter when he tries to gut him for a reversal point. Then it's Sancho who guts Nutter to make it 3-1. Takedown for Sancho late in the first to extend his lead to 5-1. We go back to neutral with 16 seconds left in the period. No scores before the break.
2nd period: Handfighting but no scores after a minute and Sancho gets hit again for passivity. Nutter will get another shot on top but Sancho defends and it's 5-2 with 90 seconds left in the match. 30 seconds left and Sancho is that much closer to a world team. And time runs out on Nutter and Alejandro Sancho is back on another world team!
Alejandro Sancho (Army (WCAP)) VPO1 Alston Nutter (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 5-2
53 kg WFS: Felicity Taylor vs Dominique Parrish
1st period: Hand fighting for a minute, no scores. Taylor goes on the clock first and can't get through Parrish's defenses. She concedes a point and Dom takes the 1-0 lead. That's how a rather slow period ends. Very tactical, not a lot of flurries or attacks.
2nd period: Taylor comes out more aggressively in the first but Parrish counters and has a single leg before action is stalemated. Parrish takes her most successful shot of the match and converts for two and a 3-0 lead. 1:44 on the clock on the restart. Taylor on the attack but a well timed down-block and go-behind makes it 5-0 Parrish in command of this match. 45 seconds left. Taylor works on an attack but will have to trade about 30 seconds for those 2 points and its 5-2 with just 15 seconds to go. Parrish counters a final attack from Taylor for an exposure and two more points to make it a 7-2 final for Dom Parrish!
Dominique Parrish (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VPO1 Felicity Taylor (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 7-2
1st period: A quiet first minute of the period but Parrish picks up the pace and attacks Taylor's leg. Felicity defends admirably but Parrish eventually secures the takedown and the 2-0 lead. Towards the end the period Parrish runs down another single leg and runs the score up to 4-0. We go to the break Dom is excellent position to take the series.
2nd period: Parrish frustrating Talyor with her head and hands defense. She then picks an opportune moment to strike and pounces on two more points and a 6-0 lead after a cleanly finishes double leg. One minute left in the bout. Taylor can't get anything going offensively and Parrish capitalizes on a reattack to make it 8-0 as time ticks away. Taylor not going down without a fight and hits a nice inside trip to get on the board before time rus out. But Parrish will not be denied and she makes the first world team of her career!
Dominique Parrish (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VPO1 Felicity Taylor (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 8-2
GR 60 kg: Dalton Roberts vs Ildar Hafizov
1st period: Hafizov is the oldest competitor here at Final X at 34 years old. He's originally from Uzbekistan but transferred to the USA after representing the former Soviet republic in the Olympics. Roberts is from Michigan and has only ever represented the USA. He gets the first point off a passivity and then lifts Hafizov in par terre, runs him to the edge and somersaults for four. 5-0 lead for Robertd. Hafizov responded with a correct throw, then gets caught on his back for 2 for Roberts. Hafizov recoers and reverses Roberts for a point and its 7-3 Roberts. Another correct throw for Hafizov and it's 7-5 at the break.
2nd period: Chest to chest for most of the first minute of period 2, no score though. Now Roberts gets hit for passivity and goes on the mat. Hafizov now a just a point deficit. High body lock and Hafizov picks Roberts high enough off the mat for a four point move and a 10-7 lead. Make that 11-7 as Hafizov adds a step out. 45 seconds to go. And that's how it ends, Hafizov takes round one 11-7!
Ildar Hafizov (Army (WCAP)) VPO1 Dalton Roberts (Army (WCAP)), 11-7
1st period: Arm spin for Hafizov after 30 seconds but he slips off the hold and it's white paddled. That doesn't stop Hafizov from getting hit for passivity and he concedes a point to Roberts. Roberts can't get a turn and in fact Hafizov stands up and "escapes" even though there are no points for that. Hafizov then gets a body lock and tries to take Roberts over but there's no exposure or even correct throw so we go back to neutral, no harm no foul. Period ends 1-0 Roberts with the slim lead.
2nd period: Roberts gets lured into a a big snap down and Ildar is able to chase Roberts down for a hard earned takedown to gain the lead. Hafizov then tries to go suplex but Roberts catches him and holds him down for 2 exposure points. Roberts has regained the lead and it's 3-2 with a minute to go. Leg foul on Roberts' next attack so takedown is waved off. Final 20 seconds. Roberts keeps Hafizov from scoring and he will force a bout 3. Roberts takes it 3-2!
Dalton Roberts (Army (WCAP)) VPO1 Ildar Hafizov (Army (WCAP)), 3-2
1st period: Front headlock for Roberts. Slip throw attempt and we go back to our feet. Hafizov gets hit with the passivity so Roberts does pick up the first point. No scores from par terre and we go back to our feet. Double under for Hafizov and he's looking to go big. Roberts tries to bail but Hafizov will get a takedown out of it and now has the lead at 2-1. Period ends.
2nd period: Still anyone's series. A slip throw by Ildar and we're back to our feet. Slip throw on a headlock from Roberts and both guys are trying to avoid the next passivity call. And now Ildar's nose has sprung a leak and they need to plug up the blood spout. Back to action with 2 minutes remaining. With a little over a minute we don't have a passivity call but we do get a nice back arch correct throw from Hafizov to make it 4-1 and now Roberts is in a deep hole. 30 seconds to go. 10. And Hafizov gets it done. Good job Ildar!
97 kg GR: G'Angelo Hancock vs Braxton Amos
1st period: Braxton is coming off a U20 world bronze medal in 2021, whereas Hancock won a senior level world bronze in Oslo, thus was the only Greco wrestler who got a free pass to Final X this year. Amos hit with passivity about 100 seconds into the match so Hancock gets a point and will be on top in par teerre. Hancock gets a quick gut, then another, then another, and it's an 8-0 tech! Wait, I missed how that 8th point got scored. 1 for passivity and 3 guts is 7. Amos looks confused too. I guess I have some research to do but mystery point aside, Hancock gets the 1st period tech fall! And woofs at the crowd as he walks off and gets a nice response.
I Asked Around And There Was Step Out I Missed That Gave Amos The 8 Point Lead. Braxton Wanted Continuation But Didn't Get It. Anyway, Mystery Solved!
Tracy Hancock (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VSU Braxton Amos (Wisconsin Regional Training Center), 8-0 2:06
1st period: West Virginia native Braxton Amos walks out to Country Roads, Hancock walks out to the Imperial March from Star Wars. Tremendous choices from both of then. Hancock comes out of the gates swinging, ripping an arm drag with such force that he collects a feet to back four points. Amos scrambles behind Hancock and was looking for a suplex but would have to settle for a two point takedown. Hancock then drives Amos out of bounds for another point and its 5-2 after a fast and furious minute or two of wrestling. Things slow down after that and the period ends with no more scores.
2nd period: Amos gets hit with passivity and will concede a point to Hancock. In par terre Hancock rolls Amos over and it's 8-2 in Hancock's favor. Amos running out of time. Hancock maintaining position. Amos frustrated but Hancock not budging. And G'Angelo will get to defend his bronze medal from Oslo in Belgrade!
Tracy Hancock (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VPO1 Braxton Amos (Wisconsin Regional Training Center), 8-2
50 kg WFS: Sarah Hildebrandt vs Alyssa Lampe
1st period: Lampe was a world medalist nearly 10 years ago, whereas Hildebrandt is an Olympic and world medalist from just last year. This, and other matchups of fellow medalists demonstrates the depth of American women wrestling and how much it's grown in recent years. Single leg for Hildebrandt and she goes right to her deadly leg lace. Good defense from Lampe and they're back on their feet, just 2-0 for Hildy. Another takedown for Hildebrandt and she won't be denied her leg lace this time. She spins Lampe through three more times and that's all she wrote! 10-0 tech for Sarah Hildebrandt! Second tech fall in a row as we chug along through this round.
Sarah Hildebrandt (New York Athletic Club) VSU Alyssa Lampe (Beaver Dam RTC / Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 10-0 1:31
1st period: Lampe attacking early but Hildebrandt fends her off. Vicious throw-by for Hildy and she's gets the first points of the match. Hildebrandt looks for a trap arm gut but Lampe doesn't turn. Hildebrandt drops down to a single leg and fights her way through a whizzer and collects two more. Now the trap arm starts working for Sarah and she takes Lampe over two times to run the score up to 8-0. Lampe with no more margin for error. And a takedown at the boundary will seal the deal. Sarah Hildebrandt is on the hunt for more hardware in Serbia!
Sarah Hildebrandt (New York Athletic Club) VSU Alyssa Lampe (Beaver Dam RTC / Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 10-0 2:12
74 kg MFS: Kyle Dake vs Jason Nolf
1st period: Two solid hard rock tunes to bring out two very good freestyle wrestlers. Dake bomed Nolf in the Olympic Team Trials last year. Probably won't get that result in the rematch, but we'll see! Dake controlling center but unable to get a step out after a minute of wrestling. No scores after 100 seconds of wrestling and Nolf goes on the activity clock. Dake picks up the first point after the activity period expires. Still 1-0 with 22 seconds on the clock as Nolf requires the trainer. He's shaking out his left hand. Just a quick consultation and we're back to action. Period ends with a tactical 1-0 score.
2nd period: Dake doing a good job frustrating Nolf who's not able to get to his positions. And just as I say that Nolf grabs hold of an ankle and then runs Dake down out of bounds to pick up a 2-1 lead. Dake goes right back at Nolf, driving him out of bound with an underhook and Nolf is his for fleeing so 1 and 1 to make it 2-3 plus a caution on Nolf. Dake drives Nolf out again for a 4-2 lead, 90 seconds remain in the match. Nolf drops down on a leg and sucks it in but Dake recovers enough to wrap up a chest lock and defends to a stalemate. Still 4-2, 30 seconds to go. 16 seconds to go, I believe Nolf needs more than a takedown due to the caution. Dake makes it academic as he keeps Nolf at bay and wins the first bout 4-2!
Kyle Dake (Spartan Combat RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VPO1 Jason Nolf (Nittany Lion Wrestling Club / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 4-2
1st period: Not much separated these two in the first bout. Can Nolf solve Dake's defenses? A very cautious first minute of wrestling. Nolf gets hit for passivity. After 30 seconds its a point for Dake. Not much for attacks, flurries or scrambles for the second half of the period. Dake picks it up some in the final seconds but 'ts still 1-0 at the break.
2nd period: Dake is a little more active in the second, likely thinking of the passivity call he doesn't want to get called for. In a seat belt whizzer position and Kyulle drives Nolf out of bounds but they're ruled grounded. Dake does indeed go on the clock and Nolf will have a chance to go ahead on criteria. Nolf does run out of the clock to pick up a point but Dake answers with a step out just a few seconds after the clock expires so it's 2-1 Dake leads with 90 seconds left in the bout. With a minute on the clock Nolf drops down on a single leg. Dake squats down and keeps Nolf from scoring, then comes close to crotch lifting him over for a turn but it's stalemated, with some boos from the crowd who wanted to give Dake more time to work there. With 15 now on the clock Nolf gets to Dakes legs again and again Dake's defense stops Nolf. Time runs out on Nolf and Dake will defend his Oslo gold medal!
Kyle Dake (Spartan Combat RTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VPO1 Jason Nolf (Nittany Lion Wrestling Club / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 2-1
57 kg WFS: Helen Maroulis vs Alex Hedrick
1st period: Fugees (I think) for Helen and AC/DC for Alex as they walk out o the mat. Maroulis dominating the ties early, gets a step out for 1-0 lead. Make it 2 steps outs. Snap-down go-behind for a 4-0 lead. Helen works the arm bar on top but can't get a turn so back to neutral. Ankle pick for Maroulis and she drives Hedrick to her back but after bringing her to the mat first so just a two point move. 6-0 with 30 seconds to go in the period. Counter attack for Maroulis and Hedrick gets freight trained to her back and the two-time Olympic medalist breezes her way to a 10-0 tech fall!
Helen Maroulis (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VSU Alexandra Hedrick (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 10-0 2:59
1st period: First point in the second bout comes from a step out Maroulis forced so she jumps out to a 1-0 lead in the first minute. Maroulis taking ground from Hedrick, and so its no surprise when Hdeick gets put on the clock. Maroulis picks up her second point of the bout. Hedrick still backing away, and Maroulis uses her momentum against her, hitting a beautiful back trip and arm drag for a feet to back and four points, plus a lot of oohs and ahs from the crowd. Helen looking for the fall but Hedrick is saved by the buzzer. 6-0 lead for Helen at the break.
2nd period: Scoreless first minute of the period. And another pretty footsweep for Maroulis as she takes Hedrick to her back again, Vintage Helen as one of the greatest to ever do it for America is on yet another world team.
Helen Maroulis (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VSU Alexandra Hedrick (Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 10-0 4:49
79kg MFS: Jordan Burroughs vs Chance Marsteller
1st period: Big round of applause for Burroughs. Who knows how many more opportunities we'll get to watch JB take the mat. Marsteller runs out to Metallica's Wherever I May Roam. Burroughs moving Marsteller around the mat, trying to get him to bite o his level changes. Marsteller doing a good job holding position otherwise, No scores after a minute. Chance goes on the clock first. JB picks up the shot clock point, then it's a vintage double to the mat for two more and a 3-0 lead. And the head clubs drifted into face slap territory for both guys as the ref warns both competitors. We go to the break still 3-0 Burroughs.
2nd period: Burroughs an eye poke, or maybe a cut to the head? Can't see, but we get a stoped early in the bout. Would not surprise me in the slightest if Burroughs ends up with a head wrap. Extended break as Burroughs has his dome attended to. Looks like he will indeed get a head wrap. Potentially the whole tape-helmet. Burroughs doesn''t look any worse for the wear once action resumes as he comes out firing. Marsteller defends JB's near-constant attacks. And Chance gets put back on the actcity clock. You don't see it called that way often but I think it was very justified in this instance. Marsteller hasn't been stalling in the folkstyle sense but Burroughs has been attacking and holding center. Anyway, another point for Burroughs as we're under a minute. 30 seconds to go. Burroughs leading 4-0, Marsteller running out of options. And Burroughs takes round one in a shut out, winning 4-0! So close to his 11th world or Olympic team!
Jordan Burroughs (Pennsylvania RTC / Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VPO Chance Marsteller (NYCRTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 4-0
1st period: Burroughs with blast double that Marsteller absorbs. Chance comes back wth a brutal arm spin and action is stopped for Burroughs. Chance gets the two and JB is ready to go, though he'll have to restart in par terre. Chance doesn't get anything else out of that sequence but does have an early 2-0 lead. Passivity is called on Burroughs and we get a stoppage for blood, this time coming from Chance. Looks like his eye is banged up. Burroughs on the attack, Chance drops to his knees and gets shoved out of bounds but it's ruled grounded. Chance also gets a passivity warning. Still 2-0 in short time. We hit the break.
2nd period: Slow start to the second and Chance gets hit for passivity. He goes on the clock. Burroughs attacking, but again Chance drops to his knees and avoids the step out point due to grounded action. JB gets the passivity point and its 2-1. Now we pause as both wrestlers' heads are leaking. We'll get dueling tape jobs for both guys. Heads are sufficiently taped and we are back in action with 1:40 to go. 45 seconds. Chance not giving Burroughs any opening and he's running out of time. Burroughs drives Chances out of bounds and this time, even though he's grounded he gets hit with a caution and one for fleeing. Criteria still says Chance is winning by dint of the two point takedown earlier in the bout. Chance also gets put in par terre. JB would rather they be on their feet but he doesn't have that option. Chance defends and Marsteller will take match two. We get a round three of this excellent series!
Chance Marsteller (NYCRTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VPO1 Jordan Burroughs (Pennsylvania RTC / Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 2-2
1st period: Both wrestles make their long walks to the mat. This is a heck of a way to close out 2022's Final X. Very early in the match but looks like Chance has a little more pep in his step. Burroughs warned for passivity, his first. Chance back to the boundary and again drops down but this time a step out is called and Burroughs has the first point of the bout. We hit the half way point of the period. A passivity warning on Chance. Burroughs taking ground. Another step out, no doubt about this one. 2-0 JB. Short time. And just before the period ends Burroughs forces another step out. He goes to the break with a 3-0 lead.
2nd period: Chance picking up the pace a bit. Burroughs forced to circle back to the center a couple times. Heavy hands from Chance and JB loses his head wrap. Burroughs hit with his second passivity at the 2 minute mark. With time left on the clock Burroughs drives Chance to the boundary and finishes this time for two. Takedown makes it 5-0 and Burroughs is starting to pull away. Chance has a lot of points to make up and not a lot of time. Under a minute. Chance needs to go big. Burroughs isn't letting get any kind of tight hold. 30 seconds. Chance starts to slow down. 10 seconds. The crowd starts applauding. And the Hulu Theater is on their feet. Jordan Burroughs does it again. His 11th World or Olympic team! The Jordan Burroughs era continues.
Jordan Burroughs (Pennsylvania RTC / Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club) VPO Chance Marsteller (NYCRTC / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club), 5-0
And that will put a bow on Final X 2022. Actually, no, Kayla Miracle and Jen Page still have to wrestle at a location and time TBD. But 29 of 30 senior world team spots have been decided and Final Xes Stillwater and New York City are officially in the books. Thanks so much for reading along. Apologies if this is confusing because you're reading this blog sequentially as opposed to the order in which events took place. Also the typos. Will try not to make any next time. See you then!
86kg MFS: David Taylor vs Zahid Valencia
1st period: Last bout of the period and it's a good one! [Larry David voice]: Pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty good. Zahid starts shooting from the start, as he is want to do. Taylor defends fairly easily and gets in on some attacks of his own. After defending a couple solid leg attacks, Taylor gets put on the activity clock. Taylor all over Valencia looking for a go-behind but can't get it in time so gives up a point. And a step out is called on Taylor so its 2-0 Valencia. David's corner throws the challenge brick but it's thrown back by the ref, as the USAW rule is once the action as resumed it's too late to challenge. Helpful explanation from the refs. And that's how the period ends.
2nd period: Valencia keeps the pressure on, dropping levels and shooting early in the second period. Taylor hasn't been able to find his offense but in fairness Valencia hasn't converted a shot yet either, except for the rather unusual step out he got in the first period that wasn't initiated from his attacks. Valencia gets put on the shot clock and Taylor keeps him at bay. And right after the clock expires Taylor circles around and grabs both Valencia's legs and adds to more to the score. Make that three more as Valencia is also called for fleeing. So it's 4-2 Taylor leads, and Valencia is going to challenge. So it's either 5-2 or 2-2, Taylor with the lead. And Valencia wins the challenge, no takedown, no fleeing, just a step out, so it's just 2-2 Taylor with criteria. 1:40 left in the match. Zahid shoots with under a minute to go but Taylor catches him. Taylor fires off a shot on the restart and has Valencia in trouble. Taylor finishes on the edge of the mat to make it 4-2 and now Valencia in a big hole with just 30 seconds to go. Taylor shuts down Valencia and take round 1 by the score of 4-2!
David Taylor (Nittany Lion Wrestling Club / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VPO1 Zahid Valencia (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 4-2
1st period: No scores after the first 40 seconds or so and Valencia gets hit with his first passivity call. Snap down go behind and Taylor catches Zahid off guard. Taylor from behind with the body lock and throw for four as they tumble out of bounds. Another snap down go behind at the boundary and just like that its 6-0. Taylor in deep again but this time Zahid defends and its still 6-0 with 30 seconds left in the period. Valencia gets in on a single leg but DT swoops down and crotch lifts Zahid over for two points. 8-0 aswe hit the break.
2nd period: Zahid fires off a shot at the whistle. A good scramble but no points. Zahid looking for a duck under, then a double. Pretty much trying everything. But David Taylor knows chain wrestling also and he stymies Valencia. 90 seconds left in the match. Valenca keeps attacking but Taylor smothers him. He finishes off the match in style with a pancake and David Taylor closes it out with a 10-0 tech fall! We knew Taylor was impressive but dispatching Zahid like that was still quite a feat.
David Taylor (Nittany Lion Wrestling Club / Titan Mercury Wrestling Club) VSU Zahid Valencia (Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club), 10-0 4:51
Note: I will move this section to the end of the blog, even though it happened first chronologically.
Winners by forfeit:
Men's freestyle 61 kg: Daniel Deshazer
Men's freestyle 79 kg: Carter Starocci
Women's freestyle 57 kg: Amanda Martinez
Women's freestyle 62 kg: Alexandria Liles
Women's freestyle 65 kg: Emma Bruntil
Greco-Roman 97 kg: Hadyn Maley vs Luke Sheridan
1st period: Sheridan hits a nice feet to back for four but Maley counters after they hit the mat and gets an exposure of his own to make it 4-2 in the first. Headlock from Sheridan and he'll trade another 2 for four as he gets Maley to expose from feet to back abut then gets roller through himself. 8-4, still in the first, Sheridan in the lead and with a big advantage in criteria as well with the two four-poiinters.
2nd period: Maley will get dinged for passivity and Sheridan collects the point and puts Maley down in par terre. Sheridan guts Maley for two more. Maley tries to get to his feet and counter but Sheridan shoves him to his back as he was getting up and it's two more and an 8-point tech fall. Sheridan wins in convincing fashion.
Women’s Freestyle 55 kg: Lauren Mason vs Alisha Howk
1st period: Mason down on a leg early, works around behind and collects the takedown. 2-0 early. A flurry and a front head lock but its stalemated. Repeat that process again and its still 2-0, not much later in the period. In short time Howk lunges in and executes a fireman's for four to take the lead.
2nd period: Fierce handfighting to start the first, Mason looking for the go behind but Howk counters with a headlock on the mat for two. Mason scoots out of the headlock and goes behind for a 1 point reversal. 6-3 with 2 minutes left in the match. Mason comes roaring back with a fireman's carry of her own to run the score up to 7-6 and take the lead. With a minute left Mason snatches a single leg and converts to make it 9-6. Howk looking to fo feet to back in short time, Mason bails and Howk settles for two. It's 9-8 with 10 seconds to go. Howk can't get a turn and that's how it ends. Lauren Mason wins a shoot out to make the national team!
Men’s Freestyle 86 kg: Mark Hall vs Trent Hidlay
1st period: A cautious beginning to the bout. Hidlay already has the U23 spot looked up after winning that team trials last week, but said he would wrestle Hall if he was feeling good so him being on the mat would confirm his status as 'good'. 90 seconds in and Hidlay is put on the activity clock. Nothing happening so Hall gets a point. A tactical 1st period ends, Hall with a slim 1-0 lead.
2nd period: The action picks up in the second. They trade attacks but it's Hall who capitalizes with a step out to double up on points. Hall gets behind Hidlay who defends in a quad pod. Hall drives him to the ground, then guts him to the left for a 6-0 lead. Hall's defense doesn't let Hidlay back into the match until 37 second left on the board as Hilday gets a go behind to make it 6-2. Time on Mark Hall's side. A stalemate with 15 seconds left. Hall cedes territory then drops to the mat. Hilday gets the go behind but that's all, and Mark Hall triumphs 6-4.
Men’s Freestyle 92 kg: Isaac Trumble vs Jonathan Aiello
1st period: Early in the first we get a scramble, they trade exposure, stay in the scramble, but then Aiello sneaks one more turn in to make it 4-2. That's how the period ends.
2nd period: Aiello gets another takedown to make it 6-2. In short time Trumble gets a chest wrap on Aiello and he takes him over for four. He'll hold criteria but they're in a scramble. And Aiello gets the exposure with barely any time left on the clock to win! Jay Aiello makes the national team!
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