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JUDO: Stevens Wins Silver, Qualifies United States for Beijing at Pan American Championships in Miami

May 08, 2008, 1 a.m. (ET)
For Immediate Release May 8, 2008 Contact: Nicole Jomantas, 719.271.9937 (cell) Nicole.Jomantas@usajudo.us (Miami, Fla.)-Travis Stevens (Glenville, N.Y. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center) advanced to his second Pan Am final in as many tries on Thursday, winning a silver medal and solidifying an 81kg division slot for the United States in the 2008 Olympic Games. Stevens fought Guilherme Luna (BRA) in the Pan Am Championships final at the James L. Knight Center, but neither player scored during the five-minute regulation period and the match went into overtime where Luna threw Stevens to win the match. Earlier in the day, Stevens won four matches that included an overtime win in the first round against three-time Pan Am medalist Emmanuel Lucenti (ARG). Four of Stevens' teammates also fought for medals, but each lost for bronze, placing fifth. After losing his semifinal in overtime, Garry St. Leger (Brooklyn, N.Y. / NYAC / Legrossports) dropped down to the 90kg bronze medal match where he narrowly missed another trip to Golden Score when he lost to three-time Pan Am medalist Jorge Benavides (CUB) by a penalty. Reigning World silver medalist Ronda Rousey (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) missed medaling at the Pan Ams for the first time ever on Thursday when she went 1-2 and placed fifth in the 70kg division. Rousey led throughout her match against 2008 Hamburg Super World Cup Champion Yalennis Castillo (CUB), but got pinned in the final 10 seconds of the match. After advancing through the repechage, Rousey fought Catherine Roberge (CAN) for bronze in a rematch of their 2007 Pan Am Championships bronze medal match in Montreal. Rousey made more attacks, but a penalty each put the match into Golden Score where Rousey again continued with a solid pace, but was penalized again and lost the match. Katie Mocco (Glenville, N.Y. / NYAC / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center) split her first two matches in the 78kg division and fought for bronze against eight-time Pan Am medalist Lorena Briceno (ARG). Although Mocco was leading by a penalty committed by Briceno, she lost when Briceno threw her for ippon (instant win) midway through the match. After a first-round loss, Anthony Turner (Miami, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami) won his next to matches to advance to the bronze medal round against Jose Vasquez (DOM). Turner and Vasquez both racked up three penalties, but Turner received the fourth which disqualified him from the match and left him with a fifth-place finish. Competition continues on Friday with the lightweight divisions. Preliminary competition begins at 10 a.m. with finals at 5 p.m. Complete results are as follows: Men's 81kg 1. Guilherme Luna (BRA) 2. Travis Stevens (Glenville, N.Y. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center) 3. Oscar Cardenas (CUB) 3. Richard Leon (VEN) 5. Leonardo Lucenti (ARG) 5. Tyler Boras (CAN) Men's 90kg 1. Eduardo Santos (BRA) 2. Diego Rosatti (ARG) 3. Jorge Benavides (CUB) 3. Alexander Emond (CAN) 5. Garry St. Leger (Brooklyn, N.Y. / NYAC / Legrosports Starrett) 5. Bronze: Julian Gutierrez (MEX) Men's 100kg 1. Keith Morgan (CAN) 2. Eduardo Costa (ARG) 3. Leonardo Leite (BRA) 3. Oreydis Despaigne (CUB) 5. Jose Camacho (VEN) 5. Carlos Santiago (PUR) Also Competed: Christian Aarona (Waimanalo, Hawaii / Makiki Seidokan Judo Club), 0-2 Men's +100kg 1. Walter Santos (BRA) 2. Oscar Brayson (CUB) 3. Albenis Rosales (VEN) 3. Jose Vasquez (DOM) 5. Carlos Zegarra (PER) 5. Anthony Turner (Miami, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami) Women's 63kg 1. Driulis Gonzalez (CUB) 2. Danielli Yuri (BRA) 3. Ysis Barreto (VEN) 3. Daniela Krukower (ARG) 5. Jessica Garcia (PUR) 5. Yennifer Dominguez (GUA) Also Competed: Marti Malloy (San Jose, Calif. / USA Judo National Training Site at San Jose State University), 0-1 Women's 70kg 1. Mayra Aguiar (BRA) 2. Yalennis Castillo (CUB) 3. Yuri Alvear (COL) 3. Catherine Roberge (CAN) 5. Mariana Lopez (ARG) 5. Ronda Rousey (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) Women's 78kg 1. Yurisel Laborde (CUB) 2. Edinanci Silva (BRA) 3. Lorena Briceno (ARG) 3. Marylise Levesque (CAN) 5. Katie Mocco (Glenville, N.Y. / NYAC / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center) 5. Mirla Nolberto (GUA) Women's +78kg 1. Idalis Ortiz (CUB) 2. Giovanna Blanco (VEN) 3. Vanessa Zambotti (MEX) 3. Melissa Mojica (PUR) 5. Carmen Chala (ECU) 5. Olia Berger (CAN) Also Competed: Heidi Moore (Englewood, Colo. / Denver Judo), 0-1 For more information, contact Nicole Jomantas, USA Judo Director of Communications and Media Relations, at 719.271.9937 (cell) or Nicole.Jomantas@usajudo.us. -END-
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