Dalton Roberts (60 kg, NYAC/OTS) is making every effort to thoroughly announce his presence not only as a Senior World Team member, but also as a potential threat others will need to watch out for in Budapest.
In this afternoon’s Grand Prix of Germany semifinal in Dortmund, 22-year-old Roberts greeted a competitor ten years his senior in Maksim Kazaharski (BLR) and what has now become a familiar script soon developed. Roberts frantically rushed in to make first contact upon the whistle with both athletes winding up in a scramble that saw Roberts get talked to by the official for torquing the arm. Back on the feet they were, with Roberts latching a two-on-one and attempting to drag Kazharski around the mat. The first passive point went to Roberts, but from the ensuing par terre, Kazharski reversed and nabbed a gutwrench to take a 3-1 lead. These would be the last points he scored the rest of the way.
Roberts, clearly the aggressor of the two throughout, dominated the tempo entering the second period still down by two. His insistence on sustaining heavy pressure brought him another passivity point, though the proceeding turn attempt didn’t yield a score. After the restart, Roberts clashed in on a high dive and trucked Kazharski to his back. Four points was the call, but Belarus wanted a challenge on Roberts’ arm interfering with the legs. The challenge was upheld and the points were wiped away. It didn’t matter. With under :05 left to go (!), Roberts ducked to the side and got underneath — and around — Kazharski for a startling takedown that provided a 4-3 lead. Belarus went for the last-gasp challenge, and lost, amending the final score to 5-3. In tomorrow’s final, Roberts will take on 2015 Junior World/2018 Hungarian Grand Prix bronze medalist Erik Torba (HUN), who defeated Taylor LaMont (Sunkist) earlier on the day.
Roberts’ presence in the finals guarantees his fourth international medal in four tries this season. In December, he earned a gold at the Lavrikov tournament in Russia; two months later it was a bronze at the Granma Cup in Cuba; and in late March, Roberts was a runner-up in the Bill Farrell Memorial.
Max stays fired up
Also with a ticket to the semis was Max Nowry (55 kg, Army/WCAP), who impressed in his quarterfinal bout opposite Fabian Schmitt (GER). Standing across from Nowry this afternoon was Dogus Ayazci (TUR), who seized a commanding 5-0 first-period lead on the strength of a passive point and two follow-up guts. Nowry picked up the pace in the second period, burrowing his way inside off of a two-on-one before launching Ayazci for a correct throw at the boundary. And soon after that, Ayazci was banged for a passivity point. From par terre, Nowry worked a midrange gut and then stepped up to lift, but his lock ran up too high to pull it over.
A reset and there was Nowry, trying to bring the heat and open up an opportunity to tie the score. Or, take the lead. Ayazci wasn’t visibly passive, but neither was he offering a sense of urgency up by a pair. For the second straight match, Nowry wound up getting chippy with an opponent, this time due to he and Ayazci both insisting they were the victims of head-butting. Nevertheless, it was the Turkish athlete who earned the 5-3 decision, sending Nowry into tomorrow’s bronze medal match — against previously vanquished opponent Schmitt.
Torba’s win in the 60-kilogram semifinals means LaMont will be back in action tomorrow for bronze. Thankfully, he will not be the only one, as Peter Bacsi (HUN, world no. 14) defeated Poland’s Edgar Babayan in the 82-kg semifinal, pulling Geordan Speiller (Florida Jets) into the third-place bout for that weight class. In addition, Amer Hrustanovic (AUT) advanced to the 87 kilo finals, which brings Patrick Martinez (NYAC) back into the fold. Altogether, the Team USA Seniors will enter Sunday with one athlete in the finals and four others fighting for podium spots.
- 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Stig-Andre Berge (NOR, world no. 5) fell to Abdol Mohammad Papi (IRI) in the 63-kilogram semis, thus eliminating Jesse Thielke (NYAC/LOG) from the competition.
- Team USA currently has 11 points, which ties Ukraine for sixth place. Home team Germany is on top with 23 points. After that it is Hungary and Sweden tied for second with 18, Poland in third with 15, Turkey in fourth with 13, and Georgia and Finland knotted at 12.
Correction: an earlier version of this story indicated that only Nowry, LaMont, and Speiller would be eligible to compete for bronze, leaving out Martinez. That information has since been updated and is reflected above.
2018 GRAND PRIX OF GERMANY
All times local (+6 hours EST)
Sunday, August 19th
10:00 am-3:00 pm: Repechage through finals
TEAM USA DAY 1 RESULTS
*2018 US World Team member
*Sam Hazewinkel (Sunkist)
LOSS Fabian Schmitt (GER) 10-2, TF
LOSS Max Nowry (Army/WCAP) 3-0
Max Nowry (Army/WCAP)
WIN Sam Hazewinkel (Sunkist) 3-0
WIN Fabian Schmitt (GER) 5-1
LOSS Dogus Ayazci (TUR) 5-3
vs. Fabian Schmitt (GER) for bronze
*Dalton Roberts (NYAC/OTS)
WIN Viktor Petryk (UKR) 6-0
WIN Maksim Kazharski (BLR) 5-3
vs. Erik Torba (HUN) for gold
Taylor LaMont (Sunkist)
LOSS Erik Torba (HUN) 7-1
vs. Dawid Ersetic (POL) for bronze
*Jesse Thielke (NYAC/LOG)
LOSS Stig-Andre Berge (NOR) 3-2
*Kamal Bey (Sunkist)
LOSS Khalid Kerchiyev (SWE) 5-5 (criteria)
*Geordan Speiller (Florida Jets)
WIN Petr Novak (CZE) 2-2 (criteria)
LOSS Peter Bacsi (HUN) 4-1
vs. Roland Schwarz (GER) for bronze.
*Patrick Martinez (NYAC)
LOSS Amer Hrustanovic (AUT) 5-1
vs. Aleksandar Stjepanetic (SWE) for bronze
Joe Rau (Chicago RTC)
LOSS Aleksandar Stjepanetic (SWE) 2-1
Lucas Sheridan (Army/WCAP)
LOSS Aliaksandr Hrabovic (BLR) 5-0
*Adam Coon (Cliff Keen WC)
LOSS Kyril Hryshchanka (BLR) 5-1