When Team USA wrestling battles with the world's best grapplers on the international stage, a Buckeye is always present to lead the charge.
That was the case this week, as former Ohio State wrestlers Kyle Snyder, Kollin Moore and Joey McKenna competed for the United States at the Zagreb Open in Croatia, a qualifier for the 2023 World Championships this fall. Snyder and Moore won gold medals at the event, while McKenna claimed a silver prize.
In the 97kg division, Snyder won all four of his matches in Zagreb to finish as the weight class winner. On his way to the championship bout, the four-time Ohio State All-American and three-time NCAA champion defeated Magomedkhan Magomedov of Azerbaijan (7-4) in a decision and Takashi Ishiguro of Japan (12-1) and Radoslaw Baran of Poland (10-0) in major decisions.
Snyder faced Amirali Hamid Azarpira of Iran in his final match of the event. The Olympic gold medalist and three-time World champion shut out his opponent in a 3-0 decision, earning himself points toward seeding for the World Championships in September, where he is almost destined to meet Abdulrashid "Russian Tank" Sadulaev in a battle for the gold medal at the event.
Moore, a four-time All-American and three-time Big Ten champion at Ohio State, won three matches in the 92kg division to claim a title for Team USA. His route to the championship bout included wins over Osman Nurmagomedov of Azerbaijan by a 7-4 decision and Jay Aiello of the United States in a 6-6 criteria match. Moore then defeated U23 World bronze medalist Miriani Maisuradze of Georgia in a 4-3 decision to win gold.
McKenna's tournament did not end with a gold medal like his Buckeye counterparts. However, he still put together a string of solid performances in the 65kg division. McKenna defeated Joshua Finesilver of Israel in a 10-0 major decision, pinned Ali Rahimzada of Azerbaijan and beat Ryoma Anraku of Japan in a 4-3 decision to advance to the championship bout.
A former two-time All-American and Big Ten champion at Ohio State, McKenna lost to Tulga Tumur-Ochir of Mongolia in his final match via a 3-1 decision. He finished as the only United States wrestler to claim a silver medal at the event, as Snyder, Moore, Alec Pantaleo and Jason Nolf won gold and four other wrestlers ended with bronze medals.
- WIN Magomedkhan Magomedov (Azerbaijan), 7-4
- WIN Takashi Ishiguro (Japan), 12-1
- WIN Radoslaw Baran (Poland), 10-0
- WIN Amirali Hamid Azarpira (Iran), 3-0 GOLD
- WIN Osman Nurmagomedov (Azerbaijan), 8-3
- WIN Jay Aiello (TMWC/CWC), 6-6
- WIN Miriani Maisuradze (Georgia), 4-3, GOLD
- WIN Joshua Finesilver (Israel), 10-0
- WIN Ali Rahimzada (Azerbaijan), 1:11
- WIN Ryoma Anraku (Japan), 4-3
- LOSS Tulga Tumurchir (Mongolia), 4-1 SILVER