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Tamyra Mensah-Stock Becomes First U.S. Black Woman to Win Gold in Wrestling

Tamyra Mensah-Stock ended her Olympics debut in style—sporting some shiny new hardware while making history. 

The top-seeded 28-year-old became the first U.S. Black woman to win gold in wrestling after defeating second-seed Blessing Oborududu 68-kilogram freestyle final, 4-1. 

“I knew I could do it," Mensah-Stock said, according to Team USA. "I knew it would be hard. I prayed I could do it. In my wildest dreams I knew.”

Mensah-Stock opened with a two-point takedown, but then the Nigerian athlete countered with a point of her own. The first period ended with the 4-1 lead for USA, and the second went scoreless.  

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Team USA's star alternated between sobs and jumping with joy as she stood wrapped in the American flag. Mensah-Stock is only the second-ever gold for the U.S. in women's freestyle wrestling, following Helen Maroulis’s medal in 2016 Rio. 

But Mensah-Stock isn't the only one who will go down in her nation's history books. Oborududu became the first Nigerian to win an Olympic wrestling medal. The 2020 Tokyo champion commented on the historic moment for both of them after the final. 

"I'm like, 'Oh my gosh, look at us representing,'" Mensah-Stock said, according to The Associated Press. "It's so freaking awesome. You're making history, I'm making history. We're making history. So it meant a lot."

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