St. Paul’s sophomore wrestler Kurt McHenry, who won the MIAA 106 pound title as a freshman and finished third at the National Preps Tournament, earning All-American honors, showed off his skills on an international stage last weekend, in Eastern Europe, winning 42 kg (92.5 pounds) weight class at the Cadet Freestyle World Championship held in Tbilisi, Georgia.
McHenry went undefeated in three matches to reach the final where he knocked off reigning European champion Mahir Mammadzada of Azerbaijan, scoring the winning points with just five seconds remaining.
“I started off hot. I got two takedowns early and then he scored on me a couple of times,” said McHenry. “I was confident because I know I can score points when I need to. I am always in a match, so I was really comfortable in my position. When he shot on my legs, I took him over. That’s what I work on.”
McHenry competed in the age class for athletes born from 1999-2001 and he qualified for the World Championships by winning the U.S. title in June. He said he traveled to Georgia with just one goal.
“I look at it like it’s my job. I’ve got to be professional and take it serious. I didn’t come out here, waist a whole summer, wrestling the whole time, or waist my parents time or my coaches. I was focused. I didn’t want to come out here and play any games. I wanted to get the job done.”