Team USA Returns Home With 14 Medals
The Cadet Pan American - Oceania Championships took place this past weekend in Calgary. Team USA had 19 competing athletes and returned home with a total of 14 medals, finishing second behind Brazil. In total, Team USA had three gold medalists, 4 silver medalists, 7 bronze medalists, and 3 fifth place finishes.
In the women’s categories, the first Team USA medalist was Malia Manibog -44kg. Malia won her first two matches by throwing for ippon but then eventually fell in the finals to Clarice Ribeiro (BRA) and was awarded the silver medal. Next up, Samantha Garcia -48kg, who also won her first match by ippon. She then Fell in the semi-finals to another brazilian judoka (Nicole Marques) but battled back in the bronze medal match winning by 1 waza-ari. Samantha was awarded the bronze medal.
Natalia Pino -52kg was unable to medal for Team USA but showed a strong performance for a 5th place finish. Jasmine Macias -57kg got off to a rough start in the opening round. She scored a waz-ari early on but unfortunately would lose the match after being thrown for ippon. However, she was determined to battle back, winning her next three matches by ippon in just over a total time of 3 minutes. She garnered the bronze medal at -57kg. Emily Jaspe -63kg also showed determination with three grueling matches. She would win the first two by ippon just after the 2 minute and 30 second mark. In the finals she scored a waz-ari but was unable to hold on to the lead and was thrown for ippon. She finished with a silver medal for cadets and would also compete as a junior later in the weekend. Jayda Fulp also competed in the -63kg but experienced a tough weekend of competition going 1-2 throughout her 3 matches.
Shavon Gonzalez -70kg brought home the gold medal for Team USA after going 2-0 in competition. Sohpia Dresel went 1-1 in competition at +70kg to bring home the bronze medal as well to conclude the women's competition.
Damian Lang - 50kg kicked things off for the competing men of Team USA Judo. He made quick work of his first opponent throwing for ippon in the first minute and 15 seconds. He then lost his next two matches to the eventual gold medalists at -50kg, Lucas Yamamoto (BRA). Damian would be awarded with a silver medal.
Team USA had two competitors in the -55kg category for the cadets, Jonathan Yang & Henry Parsadanian. Yang would go on to win his first match and then drop his second after being thrown for ippon at the start of the match. Parsadanian would end up in a similar situation. He won his first match by ippon and then lost his second by ippon. In the repechage, he had a tough match but battled through for ippon just before time expired. Parsadanian and Yang would then be matched up for the bronze medal match. Yang took home the bronze medal over Parsadanian (5th place).
Alexander Prado -60kg also got off to a rough start. He lost his first match but battled back in the repechage to win by ippon. In his bronze medal match, Alex made quick work of his opponent throwing for ippon after a minute's time in competition to win the bronze medal. Kevin Carmo -66kg also had a third place finish for bronze. Like Alex, Kevin lost his first match but showed grit and determination to get the job done to win the rest of his matches on the day.
Anthony Farnot -73kg proved he is a name to be on the look for during the draw. Anthony won both his matches. His first match he won by ippon in 30 seconds. Then he scored a waza-ari in the finals before throwing again for ippon after the one minute mark. Anthony brought home the gold medal. Octavio De Oliveira brought home the bronze medal at -81kg. A tough opening in the day, he won by ippon after 2 minutes and 40 seconds of fight time. He lost in the semi-final to Lucas Ribeiro (BRA) where Octavio proved to be a tough match for anybody. In a bronze medal match that lasted over 3 minutes, Octavio threw for ippon to bring home the medal.
At -90kg, Daniel Liubimovski ran through the competition in the first two rounds, throwing both his opponents for ippon less than two minutes of total match time. Kanta Ueyama +90 kg was the last competitor of the day for Team USA. He won by ippon in 14 seconds during his first match and then again in 49 seconds for his second match. He came home with the silver medal after losing in the finals.
We are extremely proud of this Team of cadets. All of them showed a passion and dedication to the sport. Each of them showed that Team USA judo is a team to be looked out for. Congratulations to all the competitors, we are proud to have you representing the United States.