Olympic & Junior World Trials begin Thursday

Jan. 09, 2012, 12:34 p.m. (ET)
USA Taekwondo is hosting two team trials events this week at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. Phase 7 of the 2012 Olympic Team Trials will be held on Thursday and Friday (Jan. 12-13), while the Junior World Open Team Trials will take place on Saturday and Sunday (Jan. 14-15). Both events will be conducted in Sports Center I and are open to the public.
The Olympic Team Trials will feature 27 athletes in four weight divisions and will consist of those athletes who were eligible for the first phase of the team trials in November 2010. The field includes 2008 Olympic silver medalist and 2005 World Champion Mark Lopez (Sugar Land, Texas), 2004 Olympic silver medalist Nia Abdallah (Houston, Texas) and 2009 World Champion Danielle Pelham (Bothell, Wash.).

The four winners from this week's double-elimination format will earn the right to face the top seeds in their respective weight divisions at the final phase of the Olympic Trials to be held March 10-11 in Colorado Springs (Note: If a division has 5 or fewer eligible athletes after weigh-ins, the format for that division will be a round robin). The top seeds for the final phase in March are Terrence Jennings (Alexandria, Va.) in the men's -68kg division, Diana Lopez (Sugar Land, Texas) in the women's -57kg division, Steven Lopez (Sugar Land, Texas) in the men's -80kg division, and Paige McPherson (Sturgis, S.D.) in the women's -67 kg division.
Thursday's competition will feature the women's -57kg and men's -80kg divisions, while Friday's will feature the women's -67kg and men's -68kg classes. Competition begins at 10:00 a.m. both days.
Thursday, Jan. 12
Women's Olympic Feather (-57kg)
Simone DeVito (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.)
Danielle Holmquist (Coral Springs, Fla.)
Deireanne Morales (Lynwood, Calif.)
Nicole Palma (Lake Worth, Fla.)
Danielle Pelham (Bothell, Wash.) 
Sabrina Salim (Carson, Calif.) 
Men's Olympic Welter (-80kg)
Alexander Ahlstrom (Granada Hills, Calif.)
Daniel Cosmillo (Fort Myers, Fla.)
TJ Curry (El Sobrante, Calif.)
Luke Ford (Coconut Grove, Fla.)
Brian Gallagher (Littleton, Colo.) 
Phillip Yun (Walnut, Calif.)
Friday, Jan. 13
Women's Olympic Welter (-67kg)
Nia Abdallah (Houston, Texas)
Stephanie Beckel (Miami, Fla.)
Lauren Cahoon Hamon (Miami, Fla.)
Ashley Jobin (Scappoose, Ore.)
Merissa Pico (Fort Lee, N.J.)
Sanaz Shahbazi (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Cornelia Torres (Inverness, Ill.)
Men's Olympic Feather (-68kg)
Jesus Armendariz (La Porte, Texas)
James Howe (San Ramon, Calif.)
Jaysen Ishida (Waipahu, Hawaii)
Steven Lin (Queens, N.Y.)
Mark Lopez (Sugar Land, Texas)
Johnny Nguyen (Chandler, Ariz.)
Andrew Oh (Bayside, N.Y.)
Bernard Posey (Greensboro, N.C.)
The Junior World Championships Open Team Trials will feature 224 athletes, age 14-17, vying for one of 20 spots on the U.S. team that will compete at the 9th WTF World Junior Taekwondo Championships  in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, April 4-8. Twenty weight divisions (10 male, 10 female) will be contested over the weekend with the top finishers earning a place on the U.S. team. The format will be single elimination until the semifinals where it will switch to a double elimination.
Saturday's competition will be held for the male welterweight, light middleweight, middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight divisions, and for the female finweight, flyweight, bantamweight, featherweight and lightweight divisions.
Sunday's event will feature the male finweight, flyweight, bantamweight, featherweight and lightweight classes and the female welterweight, light middleweight, middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight divisions. Competition begins at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday and 8:00 a.m. on Sunday.
Eight members of the 2011 U.S. Junior National Team are among the entrants, including Logan Gerick (Keller, Texas), Giuliana Gil (Oxnard, Calif.), Kelsey Junious (South Windsor, Conn.), Cheyenne Lewis (Elk Grove, Calif.), Trevor Long (Brooklyn Park, Minn.), Deireanne Morales (Lynwood, Calif.), Brandon Pitak (Hoffman Estates, Ill.) and Drew Thompson (Maple Valley, Wash.).
Single-day tickets for both events can be purchased in advance for $5 (age 13 & over) by clicking HERE, or can be purchased at the door for $10. Children 12 & under are admitted free of charge. Also, USOC and NGB employees receive free admission by showing their ID badge.