Byers wins silver for Team USA in Denmark
September 29, 2009
By Tim Hipps
HERNING, Denmark (Army News Service, Sept. 29, 2009) - Sgt. 1st Class Dremiel Byers became only the second United States' Greco-Roman wrestler ever to win three world-championship medals by taking the silver Sunday in Denmark.
Byers made it to the final round in the 120-kilogram/264.5-pound division of the 2009 World Wrestling Championships at the MesseCenter in Herning. He rolled through opponents from Poland, Hungary, Sweden and Germany before getting pinned in the second period of the final match of the weeklong tournament by Cuba's Mijain Lopez, the reigning world and Olympic champion.
Byers settled for silver to go with his gold in 2002 and bronze in 2007, when he helped Team USA win its only Greco-Roman team title in world championship history. He joined three-time heavyweight world championships medalist Matt Ghaffari - who struck silver in 1991 and '98, and bronze in 1995 - and became the first American to win a world championship medal of every color.
Byers is a 35-year-old wrestler in the U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program from Kings Mountain, N.C., and he's stationed at Fort Carson, Colo.
Spc. Faruk Sahin, another WCAP wrestler stationed at Fort Carson, sustained a gash above his right eye that required 13 stitches during his opening match of the tournament in the Greco-Roman 66-kilogram/145.5-pound division. He prevailed 2-0, 1-0 over Mikhail Siamionov of Belarus in that match.
The bloody-eyed and bandaged Sahin lost his second match 2-0, 0-2, 1-0 to Germany's Markus Thatner.
Pfc. Jeremiah Davis, another WCAP wrestler from Fort Carson, lost his first match of the tournament 2-0, 3-1 to Serkan Ozden of Turkey in the 60-kilogram/145.5-pound weight class. Ozden won his next two matches before losing in the quarterfinals to Olympic champion Astanbek Khushtov of Russia. Because Ozden did not reach the finals, Johnson was eliminated after losing one match.
WCAP wrestling coach Staff Sgt. Shon Lewis served as a Greco-Roman coach for Team USA throughout the tournament.
(Tim Hipps writes for Family and MWR Command Public Affairs.)