The U.S. badminton team played well Sunday (Oct. 17) in quarterfinal action at the Pan American Games, winning five of seven matches and advancing to the semifinals.
Howard Bach (San Francisco, Calif.) and Paula Lynn Obanana (Minneapolis, Minn.) played the first match of the day and needed only 14 minutes to defeat Gareth Henry and Mikaylia Haldane of Jamaica, 21-9, 21-11. The U.S. team’s other mixed doubles pair of Halim Haryanto Ho (West Covina, Calif.) and Eva Lee (Orange, Calif.) defeated Osleni Guerrero and Maria L Hernandez of Peru, 21-6, 21-11.
Iris Wang (Arcadia, Calif.) bounced back after a defeat in the women’s singles quarterfinal to Li Michelle of Canada, 21-15, 21-16, to join her sister Rena Wang (Arcadia, Calif.) in a convincing doubles win over home-nation favorites Cynthia Gonzalez and Victoria Montero of Mexico, 21-15, 21-10.
"We were a little nervous about the crowd and the home court and the first game was very tight," said Rena Wang. "We relaxed a little in the second game and were far more patient and more comfortable. We are looking forward to playing the Canadian team in the semifinals."
Bach returned to the court for the men’s doubles quarterfinal where he and partner Tony Gunawan (Los Angeles, Calif.) handled Osleni Guerrero and Toledo Ronald, 21-9, 21-14. The pair will play the Mexican team of Andres Lopez and Lino Munoz Tuesday (Oct. 18) in the
Lee and Obanana defeated Christina Aicardi and Claudia Rivero of Peru, 21-6, 21-11, to advance in the women’s doubles draw. Rena Wang lost her afternoon quarterfinal to Claudia Rivero of Peru, 21-15, 21-19, and will now focus solely on the doubles draw.
The final match of the day saw Ho and Sattawat Pongnairat (Orange, Calif.) defeat Hugo Arthuso and Daniel Paiola of Brazil, 21-17, 21-15.
All of the semifinal matches will be contested Tuesday (Oct. 18).