2022 U17 World Championships

UWW U17 World Championships Live Blog - Day 7

UWW U17 World Championships Live Blog - Day 7

The final four U17 World Championship matches for Team USA, and they're all medal matches! Follow along in real-time!

Jul 31, 2022 by Andrew Spey
UWW U17 World Championships Live Blog - Day 7

American men's freestylers will wrestle for three golds and one bronze medal in the final day of the U17 World Championships in Rome.

Additionally, no big deal, but Team USA has already clinched the men's freestyle team championships. A well-deserved congratulations to first-year developmental coach James Green and everyone who contributed!

For yesterday's live blog, click here

For a recap of the previous day's results, check out these links: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6

Kyler Larkin just missed making the semis and gauranteeing himself a shot at a medal when he lost a 2-1 bout with Japan in the 60 kg quarterfinals. The four other Americans in the final session went 3-1 in the semifinals, hence the three gold medal bouts and one bronze on the agenda. 

We're going through the repechage matches at the moment. There are no Americans in the repechage but we do need to find out who McEnelly will wrestle for bronze, so we'll keep an eye on the 92kg bouts. And it's Jaglan of India who earns the privilege of facing McEnelly for a bronze medal.

Also in the repechage is American Alex Nini, who wrestles for Team Italy. Nini is a two-time New Jersey state placer at Christian Brothers Academy. Nini is now also a top five placer in the world, with an opportunity to win a bronze medal, as he won his repechage match and will battle Ogino of Japan (who eliminated Team USA's Kyler Larkin) for a spot on the podium. 

Unfortunately for Nini and the Italian partisans in Rome, Ogino won the bronze medal match 3-1. 

45 Kilograms Gold Medal Match

Domenic Munaretto (USA) vs - Bashir Verdiyev (AZE)

1st period: The first of three finals matches for Team USA finally kicks off just instead the afternoon hours on the east coast. Verdiyev shoots in and a scramble ensues. Good short offense by Munaretto and he collects the first takedown. He rides high but two boots firmly hooked in keep him in place and we restart in neutral. Another shot by Verdiyev but this time action is stalemated. Munaretto throw by and tries to step over but Veriyev catches a foot and time runs out in the period before anyone can score. 2-0 for Munaretto at the break.

2nd period: Two minutes left in Munaretto's tournament. Good job controlling ties by Munaretto. Now working from short offense as we countdown to the final minute. Shot from Berdiyev, Munaretto looking for a go behind. No score and a restart with 31 ticks on the clock. Time running out on Verdiyev. And Munaretto holds off their Azeri to win gold! Yellow medals for the book ends as Munaretto keeps the momentum going after Hopke won yesterday at heavyweight!

51 Kilograms Gold Medal Match

Luke Lilledahl (USA) vs Mohammad Asadi (IRI)

1st period: Lilledahl takes the mat looking to improve on the silver medal he earned at least year's U17 World Championships. Lilledahl drives Asadi off the mat in an early flurry to take a one point lead. Low shot from Lilledahl grabs an ankle but great defense and counterattack from Asadi earns him a step out and the score is knotted 1-1 with Asadi leading on criteria. Short time, Lilledahl looking for an opening, he gets a single leg and wisely walks Asadi out of bounds to secure the single point before time runs out in the period. We hit the break, Lilledahl with a 2-1 lead.

2nd period: Lilledahl continues to dictate the pace, making Asadi react to him. Now Asadi shoots in but Lilledahl down blocks and pounces on a lightning quick reattack and it's two points now for Luke. Score is now 4-1 as we go back to neutral. Another reattack as Lilledahl has Asadi's timing down. It also helps that Luke is super quick. 6-1 now the score, less than a minute to go. Asadi needs to manufacture some points but is at a distinct disadvantage as Lilledahl has been able to score on reattacks. And just like that Lilledahl gets another. Add on a turn from a lace and it's a 10-1 final victory. Dominant performance for Lilledahl and he improves on last year's results. Mission accomplished!

71 Kilograms Gold Medal Match

Joe Sealey (USA) vs Raul Caso (ITA)

1st period: North Carolina native Sealey will have to contend with a rabid hometown crowd cheering his Italian opponent. Sealey is unfazed and attacks off the whistle, eventually finishing the double for two. Sealey's pace is like that. Caso digs two underhooks and Sealey responds with a perfectly timed inside trip that takes Caso directly to his back. Four big points for Sealey and a 6-0 lead. Period ends with Sealey still with the 6-0 lead. 

2nd period: Sealey back on the attack, as he is want to do. He in on Caso's legs but a whizzer keeps Sealey from scoring. On the restart, Sealey drops down on a single and cracks back the opposite side for two more. Nearly gets a standing lace to finish the match but Caso defends. Now back on their feet, Sealey is close to another takedown but he can't finish. But he does finish another inside trip to close out the match in style! Ruthless efficiency for Savage Joe Sealey! He wins a world gold in Rome!

Sealey teched all five of his opponents, outscoring them 55-1. Quite a tournament for Sealey!

92 Kilogram Bronze Medal Match

Max McEnelly (USA) vs Sahil Jaglan (IND)

1st period: Our last American bout in the Eternal City! No scores after 45 seconds and McEnelly goes on the activity clock first. 30 seconds go by almost exclusively in collar ties so it's Jaglan with the first point. McEnelly with a couple level changes but never really threatened. We go to the break, still 1-0, McEnelly trails.

2nd period: Back to action, neither wrestler conceding any ground. Now Jaglan goes on the clock. Fierce hand fighting. Nice shrug from Jaglan but good defense by McEnelly. Jaglan driving McEnelly out of bounds but action is grounded. Time expires on the clock and it's 1-1, McEnelly with criteria and 46 seconds left on the clock. India challenges the grounded call. Could be a big swing here, as a step out would also wipe out the activity clock point and make it 3-0 if India wins the challenge. Low risk to challenge as well as losing 2-1 with 2 1-point scores isn't much of a difference as losing 1-1 on criteria. And the challenge is lost so it's 2-1, McEnelly needs to stay active on defense. Jaglan picking up the pace. Conditioning doesn't seem like an issue. It's not a problem for McEnelly either, as he shuts Jaglan down and wins a near run brawl 2-1! Bronze for McEnelly and Team USA wins all four matches today!

That's a wrap on Rome! Outstanding performance by the men's freestyles! Four golds, three silvers, a bronze, and a team title! Not bad! 

Thanks for following along. See you in Bulgaria for U20 Worlds!