By Chris Kaftan
SOFIA, Bulgaria – In the 60kg freestyle wrestling competition Saturday, Ariann Martinez was unable to duplicate his teammate’s medal success from the previous night.
On the second day of freestyle wrestling competition, Martinez won one match and lost two.
In his first match, Martinez wrestled Onur Ari of Turkey and used a series of leg tackles and takedowns to win the match, 12-2.
“Ariann wrestled well [in his first match] and used his speed and strength to win the match,” head coach Thad Ferguson said.
Advancing on his first match win, Martinez faced Gabit Yeszhanov of Kazakhstan. Martinez wrestled well but made a costly error that led to a takedown and loss.
In his final match, Martinez faced Ganbat Milkhaajav of Mongolia and brutally fought through a three-minute first round.
Milkhaajav held a 9-7 edge going into the second round and scored the necessary point through leg tackles and takedowns to defeat Martinez.
Martinez said he was disappointed but vowed to return in 2017 better prepared to wrestle for gold on the mats.