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UPDATED: Prokopos, Ward, Aguilar win No-Gi Grappling golds in Krakow, Poland, March 27

The United States won three individual gold medals in the No-Gi Grappling competition at the FILA Grappling World Championships in Krakow, Poland, March 27.

Capturing gold medals were Dennis Prokopos (Milbrae, Calif./10th Planet Jiu Jitsu) at 65 kg/143 lbs. in the men’s division, plus women Grapplers Lisa Ward (Lacey, Wash./Victory Athletics) at 50 kg/110 lbs. and Jessica Aguilar (Coconut Creek, Fla./American Top Team) at 55 kg/121 lbs.

Prokopos won his first two bouts against Italy and Germany by submission, then defeated Poland in the finals by a 3-0 score.

Ward also opened with two submissions, putting away opponents from Greece and Ukraine. In the finals, she defeated a Swedish opponent by decision.

Aguilar won a five-athlete roundrobin, finishing the tournament with a perfect 4-0 record. Included were submissions over athletes from Azerbaijan and Serbia.

For Ward and Aguilar, it is their second career No-Gi Grappling World title. Ward was a No-Gi champion in 2008 and Aguilar was a No-Gi champion in 2009. Prokopos was a silver medalist at the 2009 Grappling World Championships.

The U.S. has a chance for a fourth No-Gi gold in the Open division, as Mario Rinaldi, (Port St. Lucia, Fla./American Top Team) has qualified for the finals. The Open division is open to athletes from all weight classes and is held after the finals in the other divisions.

He won four matches late on Saturday evening, in a weight with 26 entries. Two of his wins were submissions. He scored a clutch 1-0 win in the semifinals against a German opponent. On Sunday morning, he will compete against a Swedish opponent for the title. He is guaranteed at least a silver medal. Rinaldi was a World silver medalist in the Open division in 2009.

The U.S. has been guaranteed nine medals in the No-Gi division.

“The Americans had a good day. We had an amazing finals round,” said U.S. coach Sheldon Marr. “We still have hope to win the team title. We know we are in the hunt. It will be close. We didn’t have some of our defending champions with us this time. Everybody here fought their hearts out and I am proud of them all.”

The U.S. captured a silver medal in the women’s Open division, as Tara LaRosa (Woodstown, N.J./Philadelphia Fight Factory) reached the finals, where she was defeated by 2008 World champion Sheila Bird of Canada. LaRosa won three straight matches to reach the finals.

The U.S. also won four individual No-Gi bronze medals, earned by:
• Zachary Makovsky (Philadelphia, Pa./Philadelphia Fight Factory) at 60 kg/132 lbs.
• Michael Kelly (Hebron, Ill./Gilbert Grappling) at 75 kg/165 lbs.
• Tom LeCuyer (Plano, Ill./Atlas XT/Torres MA) at 70 kg/154 lbs.
• Tara LaRosa (Woodstown, N.J./Philadelphia Fight Factory) at 60 kg/132 lbs.

All four of the bronze medalists today were also medalists at the 2009 Grappling World Championships. Makovsky and LeCuyer were World champions, LaRosa was a World silver medalist and Kelly was a World bronze medalist.

It was the second year in a row that LaRosa won two No-Gi medals, as she matched that feat in 2009 at the Worlds in Florida.

Kelly had three submissions by north/south chokes, putting away opponents from Canada, Russia and Armenia.

Gabe Barahona (New Orleans, La./American Top Team) reached the semifinals at 110 kg/242 lbs., but was injured against a Swedish opponent and could not continue.

Team scores have not yet been announced by FILA in the No-Gi event. The U.S. was the World team champions in No-Gi and Gi Grappling for both men and women in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. in December 2009, and also won both disciplines at the 2008 World Championships in Switzerland.

Coaching the U.S. delegation will be Sheldon Marr of Aurora, Colo. and Shawn Sheldon of West Palm Beach, Fla., both who were members of the 2009 U.S. Grappling World Team coaching staff.

On Sunday, the men’s No-Gi Open medal matches will be held, along with the Gi Grappling competition.

At Krakow, Poland, March 27, 2010

No-Gi men’s results

60 kg/132 lbs.
Gold - Fabien Brochetelle (France)
Silver - Daniel Kmegy (Hungary)
Bronze - Ilias Bazianos (Greece)
Bronze - Zach Makovsky (USA)
5th - Elvin Jafarov (Azerbaijan)
5th - John Louro (Canada)
7th - Igor Skilskyi (Ukraine)
8th - Stefan Hoss (Germany)
9th - Karol Kawiorski (Poland)
10th - Philippe Nicole (Sweden)

65 kg/143 lbs.
Gold - Dennis Prokopos (USA)
Silver - Robert Trzcionka (Poland)
Bronze - Frank Staeblein (Germany)
Bronze - Karim Saki (France)
5th - Marco Masura (Italy)
5th - Petar Marjanovic (Croatia)
7th - B. Bayasgalan (Mongolia)
8th - Vukoje Stesevic (Serbia)
9th - Sergey Yakovolev (Russia)
10th - Attila Kelemen (Hungary)

70 kg/154 lbs.
Gold - Polok Maciej (Poland)
Silver - Martin Hedenbergh (Sweden)
Bronze - Aleksandar Kamenov (Bulgaria)
Bronze - Tom LeCuyer (USA)
5th - Carlos Polo (Spain)
5th - Yuriy Shtembulyak (Ukraine)
7th - Mathieu Husson (France)
8th - Ciro Ruotolo (Italy)
9th - Yasumi Kohei (Japan)
10th - Rory McDonnell (Canada)

75 kg/165 lbs.
Gold - Michel Salvadori (France)
Silver - Christian Sandberg (Sweden)
Bronze - Mike Kelly (USA)
Bronze - Andreas Achniotis (Greece)
5th - Samvel Arutyunyan (Armenia)
5th - Davor Pocijak (Croatia)
7th - Marc Becker (Germany)
8th - Grzegorz Kloc (Poland)
9th - Paolo Strazzullo (Italy)
10th - Mate Galbacs (Hungary)

80 kg/176 lbs.
Gold - David Pierre Louis (France)
Silver - Bernardo Serrini (Italy)
Bronze - K. Lukaszewicz (Poland)
Bronze - Svetlozar Savov (Bulgaria)
5th - Sergiy Sergienko (Ukraine)
5th - Andrey Rychin (Russia)
7th - Andras Mathe (Hungary)
8th - Malte Janssen (Germany)
9th - Jaret Evans (Canada)
10th - Mehrdad Torabi (Iran)

90 kg/198 lbs.
Gold - Mats Nilsson (Sweden)
Silver - Takanori Kuno (Japan)
Bronze - Nico Penzer (Germany)
Bronze - Zbigniew Tyszka (Poland)
5th - Srjan Rokvic (Serbia)
5th - Lamberto Raffi (Italy)
7th - Jose Rodenas (Spain)
8th - Valentyn Zagorulko (Ukraine)
9th - Ivica Tadijanov (Croatia)
10th - Levente Matyas (Hungary)

110 kg/242 lbs.
Gold - Mikael Knutsson (Sweden)
Silver - Srdjan Klisaric (Serbia)
Bronze - Vlado Pilipovic (Croatia)
Bronze - Adam Magomedov (Russia)
5th - Csaba Gulyas (Hungary)
5th - Gabe Barahona (USA)
7th - Emil Samoilov (Bulgaria)
8th - Filippo Stabile (Italy)
9th - Grzegorz Szatkowski (Poland)
10th - Oleksandr Sitalo (Ukraine)

Women’s No-Gi results

50 kg/110 lbs.
Gold - Lisa Ward (USA)
Silver - Anny Hammarsten (Sweden)
Bronze - Anna Isichko (Ukraine)
Bronze - Marija Sola (Croatia)
5th - Evgenia Laloudaki (Greece)
5th - Joanna Galka (Poland)
7th - Bojana Jolicic (Serbia)

55 kg/121 lbs.
Gold - Jessica Aguilar (USA)
Silver - Océane Talvard (France)
Bronze - Sandra Paszkiewicz (Poland)
4th - Galentia Merima (Serbia)
5th - Khayala Asgarova (Azerbaijan)

60 kg/132 lbs.
Gold - Sheila Bird (Canada)
Silver - L. Fouillat-Cousin (France)
Bronze - Julia Klammsteiner (Italy)
Bronze - Tara LaRosa (USA)
5th - Olga Starubinska (Ukraine)
5th - Evelin Banyai (Hungary)
7th - Irena Preiss (Poland)
8th - Monique-Ann Strydom (South Africa)

65 kg/143 lbs.
Gold - Karolina Zawodnik (Poland)
Silver - Dusanka Bozovic (Sweden)
Bronze - Aleksandra Tasic (Serbia)

75 kg/165 lbs.
Gold - Monika Oleksik (Poland)
Silver - Aliona Martynenko (Ukraine)

Gold - Sheila Bird (Canada)
Silver - Tara LaRosa (USA)
Bronze - A. Hadzisulejmanovic (Sweden)
Bronze - Irena Preiss (Poland)
5th - Amy Hammarsten (Sweden)
5th - Galetin Merima (Serbia)
7th - Dusanka Bozovic (Sweden)
8th - Amy Wilke (USA)
9th - Galyna Mateichuk (Ukraine)
10th - Monique-Ann Strydom (South Africa)

U.S. No-Gi performances

U.S. No-Gi Men

60 kg/132 lbs. - Zachary Makovsky, Philadelphia, Pa. (Philadelphia Fight Factory), 3rd
WIN Karol Kawiorski (Poland), 12-2
LOSS Fabien Brochetelle (France), 3-10
WIN John Louro (Canada), 10-0

65 kg/143 lbs. - Dennis Prokopos, Milbrae, Calif. (10th Planet Jiu Jitsu), 1st
WIN Marco Masura (Italy) submission
WIN Frank Staeblein (Germany) submission
WIN Robert Trzcionka (Poland), 5-0

70 kg/154 lbs. - Tom LeCuyer, Plano, Ill. (Atlas XT/Torres MA), 3rd
WIN Julian Jacaj (Greece), submission
WIN Yasumi Kohei (Japan), 3-1 in overtime
LOSS Polak Maciej (Poland), submission
WIN Yuriy Shtembulyak (Ukraine), submission

75 kg/165 lbs. - Michael Kelly, Hebron, Ill. (Gilbert Grappling), 3rd
WIN Mazime Poulin (Canada) submission
WIN Gadzhi Gadzhiev (Russia), submission
LOSS Christian Sandberg (Sweden), 1-5
WIN Samvel Arutunyan (Armenia), submission

80 kg/176 lbs. - Scott Garcia, Mesa, Ariz. (American Pankration), dnp
LOSS Andriy Rychin (Russia), submission

90 kg/198 lbs. - Jeff Funicello, Mesa, Ariz. (American Pankration), dnp
LOSS Raffi Lamberto (Italy), 0-1

110 kg/242 lbs. - Gabe Barahona, New Orleans, La. (American Top Team), 5th
WIN Sasha Ernst (Germany), 6-0
WIN Emil Samoilov (Bulgaria), submission
LOSS Mikael Knutsson (Sweden), inj. dft.
LOSS Adam Magomedov (Russia), inj. dft.

Open - Mario Rinaldi, Port St. Lucia, Fla. (American Top Team), 1st
WIN Paolo Strazullo (Italy), submission
WIN Serdjan Klisaric (Serbia), submission
WIN Marcin Held (Poland), forfeit
WIN G. Tenhendfeld (Germany), 1-0
WIN Eddy Bengtsson (Sweden), 3-0 overtime

U.S. No-Gi Women

50 kg/110 lbs. - Lisa Ward, Lacey, Wash. (Victory Athletics), 1st
WIN Evgenia Laloudaki (Greece), submission
WIN Anna Isichko (Ukraine), submission
WIN Anny Hammarsten (Sweden), 4-3

55 kg/121 lbs. - Jessica Aguilar, Coconut Creek, Fla. (American Top Team), 1st
WIN Khayala Asgarova (Azerbaijan), submission
WIN Sandra Paszkiewicz (Poland), 3-0
WIN Galentia Merima (Serbia), submission
WIN Oceane Talvard (France), 2-0

60 kg/132 lbs. - Tara LaRosa, Woodstown, N.J. (Philadelphia Fight Factory), 3rd
WIN A. Hadzisulejmanovic (Sweden), submission
LOSS Sheila Bird (Canada), 1-10
WIN Evelin Banyai (Hungary), 9-0

Open - Tara LaRosa, Woodstown, N.J. (Philadelphia Fight Factory), 2nd
WIN M. Strydom (South Africa), submission
WIN Galentia Merima (Serbia), submission
WIN Irina Preiss (Poland), 5-0
LOSS Sheila Bird (Canada), 0-7
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