For Immediate Release

March 27, 2010

 

Contact: Nicole Jomantas, 719.271.9937 (cell)

               Nicole.Jomantas@usajudo.us

 

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Myles Porter (Colorado Springs, Colo. / NYAC / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center) has come close to the podium twice – first placing fifth as a rookie at the 2006 International Blind Sports Association World Championships and then again at the 2008 Paralympic Games.

 

The #3 player in the United States among sighted athletes in the 100kg division, Porter has never let his 20/200 vision keep him from competing against anyone he could get his hands on – first as a high school wrestler, later as a football player at the University of Toledo and now as one of the top judo players in the world.

 

But for all of his achievements, the 24-year-old was missing a World Championship medal from his resume and Saturday he got his chance to fill that gap at the IBSA Worlds in Antalya, Turkey. 

 

Porter began his third World Championships with a 14-second defeat of Hector Espinoza (VEN) who he threw with a drop seoi nage (dropping shoulder throw) for ippon (instant win).

 

In the quarter-finals, Porter faced Oliver Upmann (GER).  Porter earned the first score of the match when he threw Upmann with a strong o uchi gari (inner leg throw) for a waza-ari (half-point) score.  Upmann responded to the score by attacking with a seoi nage (standing shoulder throw) which Porter attempted to counter with a te guruma (hand wheel throw).  The judges determined that the technique was an illegal leg grab and Porter was disqualified from the match.

 

"Obviously I was upset about my match against the German, but I knew I had to get it back together if I wanted to come back and win the bronze," Porter said.

 

In the repechage, Porter faced two of his nemeses.  Porter’s first match pitted him against Juan Carlos Cortada (CUB) who beat Porter in the bronze medal match in Beijing.  Determined not to let the Cuban shut him out of the medals again, Porter took the match to the ground in the second minute, armbarring Cortada for ippon (instant win).

 

In the bronze medal match, Porter faced four-time Paralympic Champion Antonio Silva, the Brazilian who defeated Porter in the first second round in Beijing.  After forcing Silva into an early penalty for non-combativity, Porter threw Silva for ippon with a tani o toshi (valley drop throw) to win his first World medal.

 

"At first I was disappointed because I really came here to win gold, but with superior coaching and everything I was able to persevere and come back for third," Porter said.  "I’ve worked really hard with my coaches Ed [Liddie] and Ryan [Reser] since Beijing and I’m happy to be able to bring home a medal."

 

Porter won’t have long to rest on his laurels as his next goal is to become the first visually impaired athlete to reach the podium at the USA Judo Senior National Championships, May 1-2 in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

 

"Winning my first medal here was a great feat and it will give me good motivation going into Senior Nationals," said Porter whose medal was the first for Team USA at the IBSA Worlds since 2003.

 

Two years after placing fifth at the Worlds as a 63kg player, Christella Garcia (Sacramento, Calif. / Sacramento Judo) fought for bronze again, this time in the 70kg division. 

 

In her first round, Garcia faced eventual gold medalist Olga Zabrodskaya (RUS).  Garcia fought the Russian well, holding Zabrodskaya to a yuko that was scored in the first minute and nearly catching her in several chokes. In the third minute, Zabrodskaya threw Garcia for a waza-ari (half-point) with a harai goshi (hip throw) and pinned her to win the match. 

 

As this win put Zabrodskaya in the semifinals, Garcia was slated to fight two-time Paralympic Champion Carmen Herrera (ESP) in the repechage; however, Herrera sustained a knee injury in her prior match, and was unable to continue. This put Garcia in the bronze medal match against Victoria Silva (BRA).  Garcia started the match well, scoring three yukos (quarter-point each) off tani o toshi throws.  In the fourth minute of the match, however, the Brazilian caught Garcia with a harai goshi for ippon to win the bronze, leaving Garcia with a fifth-place finish.

Making his debut in the 90kg division, Greg DeWall (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center) was a 2008 Paralympic medalist as a +100kg player.  After a first-round bye, DeWall faced Naser Abdelhadi (ALG).  Although DeWall fought a strong mach, he was eventually caught with a footsweep for ippon. Abedelhadi then lost in the third round to eventual gold medalist Oleg Kretsul (RUS) and DeWall was eliminated. 


In a rematch of his 2009 IBSA Pan American Games final, Ryan Jones (Aurora, Colo. / Denver Judo) fought William Montero (VEN) in the first round of the +100kg division.  Montero threw Jones for ippon midway through the match, but lost to eventual silver medalist Hamzeh Nadri (IRI) in the next round, eliminating Jones.

 

Competing in her first World Championships, Katie Davis (Sacramento, Calif. / Team Sacramento) drew Altantsetseg Nyamma (MGL) in the first round of the +70kg division, but the Mongolian withdrew before the beginning of competition.  Davis advanced to the second round where she faced eventual bronze medalist Lesley Reid (GBR).  Reid caught Davis with an early foot sweep to win the match.  The win put Reid in the semifinals and Davis advanced to the repechage where she faced a much larger Celine Manzuoli (FRA). Davis fought well against Mazouli, holding her scoreless for the first few minutes of the match.  Eventually, Mazouli’s larger size and experience got the better of Davis who was thrown for ippon with a harai goshi.

Tomorrow, Davis will have a second chance at a medal when she competes in the 78kg division where she will face Chinara Rzazade (AZE) in the first round.

Team USA will not be participating in the team competition tomorrow due to a rule that requires each team to have two totally blind athletes competing in the event. 

 

Complete results are as follows:

Women’s 70kg
1. Olga Zabrodskaya (RUS)
2. Lenia Ruvacalba (MEX)
3. Yarmia Brooks Brosal (CUB)
3. Victoria Silva (BRA)
5. Guler Yur (TUR)
5. Christella Garcia (Sacramento, Calif. / Sacramento Judo)
7. Carmen Herrera (ESP)

Women’s +70kg
1. Yanping Yuan (CHN)
2. Irina Kalyanova (RUS)
3. Lesley Reid (GBR)
3. Zoubida Bouasoug (ALG)
5. Ivomira Mihaylova (BUL)
5. Celine Manzouli (FRA)
7. Caterina Troulese (ITA)
7. Katie Davis (Sacramento, Calif. / Team Sacramento)

Men’s 90kg
1. Oleg Kretsul (RUS)
2. Samuel Igram (GBR)
3. Jorge Lencina (ARG)
3. S. Hrerrezuello (CUB)
5. Oleksander Pominov (UKR)
5. Ganbat Dashtseren (MGL)
7. Naser Abdelhadi (ALG)
7. Yusuke Hatsuse (JPN)

 

Also Competed: Greg DeWall (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center), 0-1

Men’s 100kg
1. Gwanggaun Choi (KOR)
2. Joe Ingram (GBR)
3. Myles Porter (Colorado Springs, Colo. / USA Judo National Training Site at the Olympic Training Center)
3. Hamed Alzadeh (IRI)
5. Antonio Silva (BRA)
5. Oliver Upmann (GER)
7. Juan Carlos Berzmodez (CUB)
7. Timothy Rees (CAN)

Men’s +100kg
1. Ilham Zakiyev (AZE)
2. Hamzeh Nadri (IRI)
3, Doapinguez Jimenez (CUB)
3. Hamza Harket (ALG)
5. Song Wang (CHN)
5. Gabor Papp (HUN)
7. Julien Taurines (FRA)
7. William Montero (VEN)

 

Also Competed: Ryan Jones (Aurora, Colo. / Denver Judo), 0-1

 

For more information, contact Nicole Jomantas, USA Judo Director of Media Relations, at 719.271.9937 (cell) or Nicole.Jomantas@usajudo.us.

 

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