Clan wrestlers win five gold medals prior to WCWA National Championships
By Steve Frost
The Simon Fraser University women’s wrestling team dominated the Cascades Classic winning five gold medals on Feb. 1 in its final tournament before the Women’s College Wrestling Association National Championship, which begins Feb. 12 in St. Louis, MO.
Competing in the tournament against teams from British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan, Clan wrestlers won five weight classes at the Envision Athletic Centre in Abbotsford, B.C.
Freshman Abby Lloyd, who ranked No. 6 at 109 pounds in the WCWA, won five matches on her way to gold medal at 48 kilograms. Lloyd’s toughest match came against second-place opponent and teammate Darby Huckle, a junior who is ranked No. 4 at 101 pounds. Lloyd edged Huckle 3-2 in their match.
Lloyd and Huckle will compete in different weight classes at the WCWA national championship tournament.
Senior Nikkie Brar won gold at 51 kg with a major decision over Calgary's José Tremblay, while sophomore Jen Anderson won all three of her matches at 61 kg and freshman Francesca Giorgio won gold at 63 kg.
Brar is ranked sixth in her weight class and Anderson is fourth in the latest WCWA rankings
Graduate student Bailley Halvorson won at 67 kg while teammate Alyssa Wong finished second. Halvorson is the No. 1-ranked wrestler at 155-pounds.
Freshman Payten Smith placed second at 82 kg.
Senior Laura Anderson placed third at 57 kg, losing to Edmonton’s Taj Farah. Anderson was winning against Farah before getting pinned.
At the Dave Schultz Memorial International tournament on Jan .31 in Colorado Springs, CO, SFU alumni won three weight classes and finished 4th at another. Grad assistant coach Justina Di Stasio was champion at 75 kg, winning 6-0 over Iris Smith in the final. Alumna Victoria Anthony defeated former world champion Clarissa Chun 8-0 to capture gold at 48 kg. Helen Maroulis earned a 3-2 decision over Sarah Hildebrand in the gold medal match at 55 kg.