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Team USA beats Yakutsk team 16-15 and loses to Team Russia, 18-3, in dual meets in Siberia

3/2/2004 Gary Abbott/USA Wrestling

A team of U.S. freestyle wrestlers competed in a pair of dual meets against Russian wrestlers in the Siberian city of Yakutsk on Tuesday, March 2.

Team USA edged a team of athletes from the Yakutsk region, 16-15, and were defeated by the Russian National Team, 18-3.

The U.S. and Yakutsk split the eight matches in their dual, with each team claiming victories. The difference in the dual meet was a shutout victory at 60 kg/132 lbs. by Eric Guerrero (Stillwater, Okla./Gator WC), in which Yakutsk scored no team points. Guerrero stopped Burnashev, 3-0.

The other three U.S. winners in the dual against Yakutsk were Mike Zadick (Iowa City, Iowa/Hawkeye WC) at 60 kg/132 lbs., Jamill Kelly (Stillwater, Okla./Gator WC) at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. and Daniel Cormier (Stillwater, Okla./Gator WC) at 96 kg/211.5 lbs.

Zadick defeated Semenov, 8-1. Kelly stopped Okoneshnikov, 7-2. Cormier defeated Taimazov, 5-2 in overtime, winning the clinch for the victory.

One of the most exciting matches of the dual was at 74 kg/163 lbs., where Semenov of Yakutsk edged Kirk White (Tacoma, Wash./Dave Schultz WC), 10-9. White secured an early lead, but Semenov came back strong to win at the end.

The dual meet against the Russian National Team, which featured many of the nation’s top wrestlers, included six matches, all won by Russia. Three of the matches ended up as shutout victories for the Russian athlete, where the U.S. did not score any points.

The first three matches were close, and the U.S. athletes scored points.

At 60 kg/132 lbs., Alan Dadiyev defeated Guerrero, 8-5. At 66 kg/145.5 lbs., Ramazan Abdurackhmanov stopped Bill Zadick (Iowa City, Iowa/Hawkeye) 3-1. At 74 kg/163 lbs., Magomed Isadgeyev stopped White, 3-1.

The Russian team featured a pair of past World champions, 2003 World champion Sajid Sajidov at 84 kg/185 lbs. and 1997 World champion Kouramagomed Kouramagomedov at 120 kg/264.5 lbs., both who scored victories by shutout.

“We were a little flat, coming one day off the Yarygin Tournament,” said U.S. coach Mike Duroe. “I felt we were well prepared. A lot of the guys made technical mistakes which cost us critical points against the Russian National Team.”

There was a sold-out standing room crowd of thousands of fans that packed the arena in Yakutsk. The event was also televised in the region, and the regional political leader was in attendance.

A U.S. team moves on to compete in a tournament in the Siberian city of Ulan Ude later this week.

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