World Champ Amoyan Ascends to Finals With Heroic Comeback
Tuesday, June 4, 2019 - 18:54 By Eric Olanowski
PONTEVEDRA, Spain (June 4) – Armenia’s reigning junior world champion Malkhas AMOYAN trailed for over 5 minutes and 45 seconds in his semifinals bout against 2016 cadet world silver medalist Sergei STEPANOV (RUS), but halted one of the biggest upsets of the tournament by using late heroics to steal a spot in the 72kg junior European finals.
Amoyan conceded an early takedown just seconds into the first period, but weathered Stepanov’s storm and got out of the first period only trailing 2-0. After the break, and moments into the second period, the Armenian cut his deficit in half with a one-point step out. Shortly after, the Armenian’s deficit grew to three points when Stepanov scored his second takedown of the bout.
Amoyan picked up his pace and pushed out Stepanov, and trailed 4-2 with 75 second left.
The world champion transition from an arm drag to a high hip shot and scored a takedown with 20 seconds left, tieing the match at four point apiece; but he still trailed on criteria because Stepanov’s pair of two-point exchanges trumped his takedown and two one-point moves.
With 11 seconds left, while still on top in the par terre position, Amoyan tossed Stepanov out of bounds and closed out the semifinals match with a 5-4 win, inserting himself into his first junior European finals.l
Though he does have a cadet European title on his resume, Amoyan took third the past two years in the junior division and will be looking for his first junior European gold medal. He’ll wrestle Moldova’s Mihai PETIC in the 72kg gold-medal bout. Petic ended Ihor BYCHKOV’s (UKR) quest to win a European title with a 5-4 semifinals victory.
The Day 3 finals begin on Wednesday at 18:00 (local time).
GOLD - Asgar ALIZADA (AZE) vs. Diego CHKHIKVADZE (GEO)
SEMIFINAL - Asgar ALIZADA (AZE) df. Ivo Krasimirov ILIEV (BUL), via fall
SEMIFINAL – Diego CHKHIKVADZE (GEO) df. Sahak HOVHANNISYAN (ARM), 4-1
GOLD - Hayk MELIKYAN (ARM) vs. Giorgi SHOTADZE (GEO)
SEMIFINAL - Hayk MELIKYAN (ARM) df. Abdulvakhab ASAINOV
SEMIFINAL - Giorgi SHOTADZE (GEO) df. Haavard JOERGENSEN (NOR), 12-2
GOLD - Malkhas AMOYAN (ARM) vs. Mihai PETIC (MDA)
SEMIFINAL - Malkhas AMOYAN (ARM) df. Sergei STEPANOV (RUS), 5-4
SEMIFINAL - Mihai PETIC (MDA) df. Ihor BYCHKOV (UKR), 5-4
GOLD - Vitalii ANDRIIOVYCH (UKR) vs. Istvan TAKACS (HUN)
SEMIFINAL - Vitalii ANDRIIOVYCH (UKR) df. Stanislav PSEUNOV (RUS), 2-1
SEMIFINAL - Istvan TAKACS (HUN) df. Lucas LAZOGIANIS (GER), 6-5
GOLD - Alex SZOKE (HUN) vs. Patrick NEUMAIER (GER)
SEMIFINAL - Alex SZOKE (HUN) df. Gerard Cyprian KURNICZAK (POL), 4-2
SEMIFINAL - Patrick NEUMAIER (GER) df. Uladzislau PUSTASHYLAU (BLR), 4-0