As host country Canada continues to capture the hearts and minds of sports fans with its remarkable performance at the 2015 Toronto Pan Am Games, a pair of female wrestlers were nothing short of dominant on Day 7. The jubilant result was four medals for Canada in women’s wrestling, including two golds. As a side note, it contributed to a day that saw Canada surpass the 100 medals mark.
Competing in the women’s 69-kg class, Dori Yeats of Montreal enjoyed an outstanding 13-2 gold-medal win over Maria Acosta of Venezuela. Of note, she enjoyed a 9-0 lead after the first period. A former gymnast until the age of 14, she followed in her father Doug’s footsteps, who went to five Summer Games in Greco-Roman wrestling. With the support of sports nutritionist Alexia de Macar, the newly found focus on weight and nutrition may comprise the winning combination as she sets her sights on gold at the 2016 Rio Summer Games.
Yeats would grab her opponent by both legs and just spun her around. It had seemed like it was enough for the gold medal win but the judges declared it had not garnered enough points. Upon earning the three points to increase her lead by double digits (known as technical superiority), it resulted in one of the two ways to capture a freestyle wrestling win.
In the other two matches, Yeats prevailed by scores of 6-0 and 14-3. Of note, it only adds to her growing legacy that included nine national championships and gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Winter Games.
Complementing her win was fellow Canadian wrestler Braxton Stone from nearby Pickering, who claimed gold in the 63-kg class. Her road to gold came via a defeat of Cuban Katerina Vidiaux as she grabbed the first two points. As a side note, Justina Distasio grabbed silver for Canada in the 75-kg division and Haislan Garcia won the bronze medal match in the men’s 65-kg class. Although Vidiaux battled back to grab three points, it was not enough.
Stone would ankle-spin her opponent at such a fast rate that judges actually lost count in scoring, possibly resulting in a premature declaration of announcing her as the victor. They were unsure whether she was able to win on technical superiority. After deciding to continue the match, Stone left no doubt as to who the winner was as the final 30 seconds resulted in three points on two different moves. She hopes to build on such momentum as she heads to the senior world championships in Las Vegas this September.