Dominique Parrish wins first U.S. gold medal of world wrestling championships

·2 min read
Dominique Parrish
Dominique Parrish

Dominique Parrish took gold in her senior world wrestling championships debut, giving the U.S. its first title of the competition in Belgrade, and an unexpected one.

Parrish, 25, beat Mongolian Batkhuyagiin Khulan 4-2 in Wednesday’s 53kg final, capping a remarkable run as the No. 7 seed. The bracket lacked all three Olympic medalists and 2021 World champion Akari Fujinami of Japan, the 18-year-old phenom who withdrew last week due to a foot injury.

Parrish was eliminated before the finals of last year’s Olympic Trials. Before that, she competed in three junior world championships with a best finish of fifth.

Now, she joins an exclusive recent list of U.S. women to win a world title at an Olympic weight: Helen Maroulis and Tamyra Mensah-Stock, who also own Olympic gold medals, and Adeline Gray, a six-time world champion and Olympic silver medalist.

Earlier Wednesday, Olympic bronze medalist Sarah Hildebrandt earned her third world championships medal, bronze in the 50kg division. Hildebrandt earned technical falls in all three of her wins over the last two days. Her lone defeat came in the semifinals to Dolgorjavyn Otgonjargal of Mongolia.

Japan’s Yui Susaki pinned Otgonjargal in 83 seconds in the final, extending her undefeated international record that now includes an Olympic gold medal and three world titles.

Susaki, 23, didn’t concede a point at the Tokyo Games or in Belgrade over the last two days. All of her three losses dating to 2010 (when she was in fifth grade) came domestically to Yuki Irie, who is six years older, according to United World Wrestling.

On Thursday at worlds, Mensah-Stock and Maroulis wrestle in gold-medal finals, as does fellow American Amit Elor, a world junior champion in her first senior worlds.

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