Ukraine Wins Women’s Wrestling European Team Title

By Eric Olanowski

BUCHAREST, Romania (April 11) – Ukraine, who had a solo bronze medalist and finished last year’s Kaspiisk European Championships in seventh place, capped off their improbable run to a European team title on the backs of four individual women’s wrestling championship performances. 

They had three champions on Thursday night and added one more gold medal on Friday to bring their overall title total to four European championships. Their lone Day 5 champion was Alina BEREZHNA STADNIK MAKHYNIA (UKR), who won the 72kg gold medal. 

In the 72kg finals, former two-time continental champion Alina Berezhna Stadnik won her third European title with a fall over Anna SCHELL (GER) four minutes into the finals. It was the second time the Berezhna Stadnik threw her German opponent to her back but was able to put an exclamation point on Ukraine’s run to a European team title with a fall to close out the competition. 

Ukrainian's also welcomed Day 5 points from silver medalists Lilya HORISHNA and Tetyana KIT. 

Bulgaria, who grabbed an individual title from Taybe YUSEIN (BUL) at 62kg, finished in second place with 112 points. 

At 62kg, returning world and European champion Taybe Yusein successfully defended her title with a controlling 4-0 victory over Italy’s first time continental medalist  Aurora CAMPAGNA (ITA). 

The final three women's wrestling gold medals went to Russia, Hungary, and Azerbaijan. 

In the 53kg finals, defending champion Stalvira ORSHUSH (RUS) punished two-time U23 European gold medalist Lilya HORISHNA (UKR), 13-3, and won her second consecutive continental title.

Orsush trailed early after Horishnia was awarded an inactivity point, but the Russian outscored her Ukrainian opponent 13-2 before ending the match early. 

Orsush started her 13 points scoring streak off with a takedown, then wasted no time getting to a gut wrench and commanded the 4-1 lead after trailing 1-0. She continued to stay offensive, grabbing a second takedown, then transitioned into a pair of gut wrenches and led 10-3 after the first period. 

In the second period, she kept the heat on and scored a stepout and a third takedown to win her second consecutive European title. 

A lot of close and tense moments in the 57kg finals, but in the end, it was fifth-ranked returning world bronze medalist Emese BARKA (HUN) who came out on top against world bronze medalist Tetyana KIT (UKR), 4-2. 

In their gold-medal match, Barka and Kit exchanged two-and-two in the opening period, but it was Barka who had the lead on criteria. The Hungarian wrestler picked up her other two points off of Ukrainian cautions and added a continental gold medal to her resume for the first time in her career. 

At 65kg, Elis MANOLOVA (AZE) spoiled Kriszta INCZE’s (ROU) hopes of becoming the first Romanian women’s wrestler to win a European gold medal by scoring six unanswered second-period points to win the gold medal, 6-4. 

Manolova was down 4-0 heading into the intermission, but never panicked and tied the match with a takedown and a pair of stepouts, but still trailed on criteria. The Azeri thought she took the lead with a stepout with 15 seconds left, but a challenge determined the wrestlers were grounded and the call was reversed. 

With under 10 seconds left, the Azeri took a desperation shot and silenced the crowd with a takedown as time expired to win her third continental title and first since 2015. 

GOLD - Ukraine (168 points)
SILVER  - Bulgaria  (112 points)
BRONZE - Turkey (98 points)
Fourth – Azerbaijan (96 points)
Fifth - Russia (89 points)

GOLD - Stalvira ORSHUSH (RUS) df. Lilya HORISHNA (UKR), 13-3
BRONZE - Vanesa KALADZINSKAYA (BLR) df. Roksana ZASINA (POL), 2-0 
BRONZE - essica Cornelia Francisca BLASZKA (NED) df. Tatiana DEBIEN (FRA), 6-4 

GOLD - Emese BARKA (HUN) df. Tetyana KIT (UKR), 4-2
BRONZE - Anastasia NICHITA (MDA) df. Mathilde Hélène RIVIERE (FRA), 8-7 
BRONZE - Alyona KOLESNIK (AZE) df. Mimi HRISTOVA (BUL), via fall 

GOLD - Taybe YUSEIN (BUL) df. Aurora CAMPAGNA (ITA), 4-0 
BRONZE - Marianna SASTIN (HUN) df. Moa NYGREN (SWE), 3-2 

GOLD - Elis MANOLOVA (AZE) df. Kriszta Tunde INCZE (ROU), 6-4 
BRONZE - Petra OLLI (FIN) df. Henna JOHANSSON (SWE), 2-2 
BRONZE - Mariia KUZNETSOVA (RUS) df. Asli DEMIR (TUR) , 14-3

GOLD - Alina BEREZHNA STADNIK MAKHYNIA (UKR) df. Anna Carmen SCHELL (GER), via fall