Luke Lilledahl pulled off one of the CRAZIEST comebacks ever at U20 Worlds with this insane finish to make the World finals! pic.twitter.com/p9Y527Wooe
— FloWrestling (@FloWrestling) August 14, 2023
Lilledahl, competing at 57 kg in the tournament, defeated Lev Pavlov of the Individual Neutral Athletes, 9-2, in the qualifier. He then bested Tolga Ozbek of Turkiye, 6-1, in the round of 16 before beating Armenia’s Edik Harutyunyan, 8-3, in the quarterfinals. He finished his day with a 9-7 victory over Azerbaijan’s Ruslan Abdullayev in the semifinals.
Lilledahl will face Japan’s Yuto Nishiuchi in the finals on Tuesday at 11 a.m. eastern time.
He already has a couple of medals from the past two years when competing in the U17 Championships. Lilledahl took a silver medal in 2021 before winning gold last year.
Lilledahl is a Missouri native who has competed at the Wyoming Seminary the past two seasons, posting a 46-3 record. He won the Super 32 meet last fall, the Walsh Jesuit Ironman meet by defeating Jax Forrest, and finished the season by winning the 2023 National Prep title.
Lilledahl is a highly touted freestyle wrestling competitor.
Lilledahl will join Penn State wrestling for the 2024-25 season. He projects to be either a 125 or 133-pounder in college.
Ohio State’s Jesse Mendez, who finished sixth at the NCAA Championships this season, is also in the U20 finals at 65 kg. He also went 4-0 on the day and will face Mohammad Shakeri of Iran in Tuesday’s finals.
Also for Team USA, incoming Cornell freshman Meyer Shapiro also went 4-0 and will go for a gold medal at 70 kg on Tuesday. North Carolina State’s Matthew Singleton went 3-1 and will go for a bronze medal at 79 kg, while Camden McDanel went 2-1 at 97 kg and will also go for third place.