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U.S. Women Sweep Golds on Final Day of the U.S. Open

Sept. 27, 2009, 12:37 a.m. (ET)

(San Jose, Calif.) – Five U.S. players won gold medals on Saturday during the final day of U.S. Open competition at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center, including a four-player sweep of the women’s divisions. 

After four consecutive years of silver and bronze medal finishes at the Open, two-time World Team member Marti Malloy (San Jose, Calif. / USA Judo National Training Site at San Jose State University) finally broke through to the top step of the podium in the 57kg division.  

“It’s great fighting at home.  I was so excited and I love fighting in front of my family and friends,” Malloy said of competing in front of a hometown crowd.  “The only bad thing is it’s hard to think of it like a big tournament just because you’re sleeping in your own bed and I event worked the day before, but you just have to adjust your mindset that it really is like an event in another city.”

Malloy had a first round bye and then armbarred Veronica Graves (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center / Boulder Judo Training Center) to advance to the semifinals against Hannah Martin (Glenville, N.Y. / NYAC / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center).  

Although Martin defeated Malloy in the semifinals of the 2008 U.S. Open, Malloy earned the win this time and her final match was set against 2008 Senior Nationals silver medalist Angelica Delgado (Miami, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami).

Malloy forced Delgado into two penalties to take an early lead before throwing the 2009 Junior World Team member for a waza-ari (half-point) score.  Delgado was given a third penalty that ended the match with a win and gold medal for Malloy.

“It’s been a goal of mine to win this for a really long time and you get really close, but even one loss and you can end up with a bronze,” Malloy said.  I was definitely more motivated after the Worlds [in August] and I just kept training really hard and pushing through.”

One of Malloy’s teammates at the World Championships in Rotterdam was 15-year-old Katelyn Bouyssou (Hope, R.I. / NYAC / Mayo Quanchi Judo Club) who won her first U.S. Open gold as a 48kg player on Saturday.  

Bouyssou defeated Marie-Pier Gauvreau (CAN) and Diana Ortiz (VEN) after a first-round bye to advance to the finals against Ann Shiraishi (San Francisco, Calif. / East Bay Judo Institute).

The match was a repeat of the 2008 U.S. Open final, but, while Shiraishi dominated that fight, it was Bouyssou who controlled this one.  After taking a penalty lead, Bouyssou countered a drop seoi nage (dropping shoulder throw) attempt by Shiraishi with a throw for a waza-ari score that Shiraishi couldn’t overcome.

“I’m cool as a cucumber coming to these tournaments now and I’m not nervous like I was when I was little,” Bouyssou said.  “I think my experience at the Worlds made me a lot more mature, like there was a time when she almost threw me and even a couple months ago I would’ve panicked, but I held it together.”

A former 48kg player, Jeanette Rodriguez (Davie, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami) won her first U.S. Open title as a 16-year-old in 2006.  Rodriguez has since moved up to 52kg, but, after two early round wins, she found herself competing against Natalie Lafon (Glenville, N.Y. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center), a former opponent of Rodriguez’s at 48kg.

Competing in the semifinals, neither Lafon nor Rodriguez scored during the regulation period, but Rodriguez was quick to attack in Golden Score (overtime), throwing Lafon during the first exchange.

In the finals, Rodriguez and six-time Pan Am medalist Flor Velasquez (VEN) went through both regulation and Golden Score periods without scoring, so the referees granted the decision unanimously to Rodriguez.

In the 44kg division, 18-year-old Taylor Ibera (Honolulu, Hawaii / Hawaii Tenri) avenged her Junior World Trials loss earlier this season to Veronica Prado (Coral Springs, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami) when she threw Prado for a yuko score to win her second U.S. Open title.

A 90kg player who placed fifth on Friday, Iavor Kostadinov (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center / Boulder Judo Training Center) won his first U.S. Open medal with a gold in the Open division.

After a first-round bye, Kostadinov won his next two matches against Pablo Figueroa (PUR) and Luis Bermeo (ECU) to advance to the finals against Leonardo Allen (BRA).  Allen, a 73kg player, upset 2008 Olympic heavyweight Daniel McCormick (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE) when he threw McCormick for ippon in the semifinals. 

Allen led their final match when he threw Kostadinov for a yuko (quarter-point) score.  Allen was given two penalties and Kostadinov one to tie the score.  Kostadinov threw Allen for a waza-ari score in the final 30 seconds of the match to take the lead. 

Both athletes were given penalties in the last 10 seconds for stalling, however, which gave Kostadinov the second waza-ari score he needed to earn the gold.

Vitaliy Vanyan (North Hollywood, Calif. / Mojica Judo Club) also won his first U.S. Open medal with a silver in the 60kg division.  Vanyan won his first three matches to advance to the finals where lost by a waza-ari score to Issam Nour (FRA).

Complete results for the senior elite divisions are as follows:

Completed Draws

Men’s Open
1. Iavor Kostadinov (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center / Boulder Judo Training Center)
2. Leonardo Allen (BRA)
3. Daniel McCormick (Wakefield, Mass. / NYAC / USA Judo National Team FORCE)
3. Luis Bermeo (ECU)
5. Scott Chapman (Oklahoma City, Okla. / USA Stars)
5. James Kannianen (Evans, Colo. / Northglenn)

Men’s 55kg
1. Miguel Medrano (PUR)
2. Hiram Cruz (PUR)
3. Joshua Prado (Coral Springs, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami)
3. Aaron Fukuhara (Torrance, Calif. / Gardena Judo)
5. David Honda (Torrance, Calif. / South Bay Judo)
5. Alexandre Dibartolo (CAN)

Men’s 60kg
1. Issam Nour (FRA)
2. Vitaliy Vanyan (North Hollywood, Calif. / Mojica Judo Club)  
3. Jose Romero (ECU)
3. Everet Desilets (Providence, R.I. / Mayo Quanchi Judo Club)
5. Jeff Fujimoto (Berkeley, Calif. / Sawtelle Judo)
5. Blake Tsuyuki (CAN)

Men’s 66kg
1. Ricardo Valderrama (VEN)
2. Adil El-Mani (FRA)
3. Alisher Mantobetov (Kansas City, Mo.)
3. Roberto Ibanez (ECU)
5. David Lebron (PUR)
5. Kenny Hashimoto (Thornton, Colo. / Northglenn Judo)

Men’s 73kg
1. Hashbaatar Tsagaanbaatar (MGL)
2. Ludwig Ortiz (VEN)
3. Michael Eldred (Fruitland, Idaho / Western Idaho Judo Institute)
3. Andrew Porras (Miami, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami)
5. Alfred Raymond (Scituate, R.I. / Mayo Quanchi Judo Club)
5. David Torres (San Jose, Calif. / USA Judo National Training Site at San Jose State University)

Women’s 44kg
1. Taylor Ibera (Honolulu, Hawaii / Hawaii Tenri)
2. Veronica Prado (Coral Springs, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami)
3. Urimare Bracho (VEN)
3. Alexa Liddie (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center / Boulder Judo Training Center)
5. Ibeth Heredia (ECU)
5. Teshya Alo (Honolulu, Hawaii / Kamehameha)

Women’s 48kg
1. Katelyn Bouyssou (Hope, R.I. / NYAC / Mayo Quanchi Judo Club)
2. Ann Shiraishi (El Cerrito, Calif. / East Bay Judo Institute)
3. Marie-Pier Gauvreau (CAN)
3. Diana Ortiz (VEN)
5. Orlinda Ortiz (VEN)
5. Diana Cobos (ECU)

Women’s 52kg
1. Jeanette Rodriguez (Davie, Fla. / USA Judo National Training Site at North Miami)
2. Flor Velazquez (VEN)
3. Natalie Lafon (Glenville, N.Y. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center)
3. Amelia Fulgentes (United States / Simi Valley, CA / Mojica Judo Club)

5. Jordan Poliakiwski (CAN)
5. Glenda Miranda (ECU)

Women’s 57kg
1. Marti Malloy (San Jose, Calif. / USA Judo National Training Site at San Jose State University)
2. Angelica Delgado (Miami, Fla. / USA Judo National Training site at North Miami)
3. Hana Carmichael (Wakefield, Mass. / USA Judo National Team FORCE)
3. Hannah Martin (Glenville, N.Y. / NYAC / USA Judo National Training Site at the Jason Morris Judo Center)
5. Mindy Chow (United States / Honolulu, HI / Hawaii Tenri Judo)
5. Diana Villavicencio (ECU)

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