DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., May 9, 2014 – The top trampoline and rhythmic gymnastics athletes from North, Central and South America started the road to qualify for the 2014 Youth Olympic Games today when competition got underway at the Junior Pan Am Championships May 9-11 at the Daytona Beach (Fla.) Ocean Center. Eight men and eight women advanced to tomorrow’s trampoline finals, and rhythmic gymnastics will complete the all-around on Saturday, May 10, at 4:30 p.m. In addition, the top eight for both hoop and ball qualified for the event finals. The 2014 Stars & Stripes Cup, which features international trampoline and tumbling competition and Junior Olympic Levels 5-6 in rhythmic gymnastics, resumes on Saturday at 8:30 a.m.
At the halfway point of rhythmic gymnastics, the USA’s three gymnasts have the highest two-event scores. Laura Zeng of Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, the reigning U.S. junior rhythmic gymnastics all-around champion, earned a two-event score of 31.250 for the top spot in the all-around rankings at the mid-point. Her 15.650 on hoop and 15.600 on ball earned her a trip to both event finals. Nicole Kaloyanov of Woodbridge, Va./Gymnastics World, tallied a 29.100 for two events and qualified for the event finals for both hoop (14.600) and ball (14.500). Camilla Feeley of Lincolnshire, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, posted a two event score of 28.150 (hoop, 14450; ball 13.700) for third.
In addition to Zeng and Kaloyanov, the other event finalists are: hoop – Mayra Tiago Sineriz of Brazil, Marina Malpica of Mexico, Edna Garcia of Mexico, Katherine Uchida of Canada, Cindy Huh of Canada and Karen Pereyra of Argentina; and ball – Garcia, Sineriz, Alessandra Cunha Dos Santos of Brazil, Ledia Juarez of Mexico, Uchida and Huh.
For trampoline, the top eight men and top eight women in the preliminary round advance to the finals, with a maximum of two per country.
In women’s trampoline prelims, the USA’s Nicole Ahsinger of San Diego, Calif./SoCal TTC, and Maggie Gallagher of Coto de Caza, Calif./World Elite Gymnastics, finished one-two in the prelims and secured spots in the event finals. Canada’s Sophiane Methot was third at 91.675. The other five women who will compete in the finals are: Frederike Breault of Canada; Karina Cantu Martinez of Mexico; Lindsay Fuentes Rosas of Mexico; Larissa Aladim of Brazil; and Grisvel Gutierrez of Venezuela. Clare Johnson of Huntsville, Ala./The Matrix, had the fourth highest score but will not compete in the finals due to the two per country rule. Meghan O’Connell, Middletown, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy, scored a 89.060 for ninth.
In men’s trampoline, Mexico’s Luis Armando Lozano Loria Cetin earned the highest prelim score with 96.890. The USA had the next two spots. Cody Gesuelli of Middletown, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy, was second at 95.815, and Spencer Reed of Tulsa, Okla./Oklahoma Extreme, was third at 92.940. Both Colin Duda of Atlantic Highlands, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy, and Ronald “Jake” Jacobson III of Fishers, Ind./The Matrix, missed on the second routine and earned a 54.615 and 50.435, respectively.
The other five who advance to the men’s finals are: Ben Tyo of Canada; Amado Lozano Mendoza of Mexico; Rodrigo Valera of Argentina, Fabian Sepulveda of Chile; and Breno de Paula Souza of Brazil.
The apparatus for the first of two events for the group all-around is five hoops. Brazil claimed the top score at 13.400. Canada posted a 13.100, and Venezuela received an 11.100. the United States earned an 8.450.
The members of the U.S. Junior Rhythmic Team are: Yelyzaveta Merenzon of Buffalo Grove, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center; Elina Nikerina of Deerfield, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center; Sophia Popova of Minneapolis, Minn./Twin Cities Rhythmic; Emily Rakhnyansky of Brooklyn, N.Y./MatchPoint; Nicole Sladkov of Vernon Hills, Ill./M & N Rhythmic Academy; and Nicky Wojtana of Plano, Texas/Texas Rhythmic Academy.
The Junior Pan Am Championships determine what countries will represent the Americas in the second Youth Olympic Games in individual and group rhythmic gymnastics and men’s and women’s trampoline, and the qualifiers will be known following competition on May 10. The USA is vying for spots for the Youth Olympic Games in men’s and women’s trampoline and individual rhythmic gymnastics.For rhythmic gymnastics, the athletes must be 15 years old, and trampoline athletes must be 16 or 17 in 2014. The Junior Pan Am Championships is an event of the Pan American Gymnastics Union. The Youth Olympic Games will be held Aug. 16-28 in Nanjing.
The remaining Junior Pan Am Championships competition schedule is: May 10 – final day of rhythmic gymnastics all-around (clubs, ribbon) at 4:30 p.m., trampoline finals (women at 6 p.m., men at 8 p.m.), and group rhythmic gymnastics (10 clubs); and May 11 – event finals for individual (hoop, ball, clubs, ribbon) and group (five hoops and 10 clubs).
Both an all-session ticket, which includes all four days, and all-day passes are available. The all-session ticket is $45 and the all-day pass is $20. All tickets are general admission and include facility fees. The all-session package and the all-day pass for May 10, the finals for the Junior Pan Am Championships, are available online through Ticketmaster at ticketmaster.com or at the Ocean Center Box-office. A discounted ticket for Saturday evening is available on the website for $10, and the promo code is USA. Daily all-day passes will be available onsite only.
The local partners for these events include the Central Florida Sports Commission, the Ocean Center, Volusia County and the Daytona Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau, and National Travel Systems is a partner for the World Championships and World Age Group Competition.
The World Trampoline and Tumbling Championships, held annually except in the Olympic year, determines the men’s and women’s World champions in four events: trampoline, synchronized trampoline, tumbling and double mini-trampoline. The World Age Group Competition showcases the world’s best boys and girls in those four events in four age groups: 11-12, 13-14, 15-16 and 17-18 years of age. The two events are expected to showcase more than 1,100 athletes.
Central Florida Sports Commission. The Central Florida Sports Commission strategically solicits, creates and supports marquee sports-related events and businesses that enhance our community’s economy. The Sports Commission represents the counties of Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia, as well as the City of Orlando. For more information, visit www.centralfloridasports.org.
International Gymnastics Federation. The International Gymnastics Federation is the governing body for gymnastics worldwide. It is the oldest established international sports federation and has participated in the Olympic Games since their revival in 1896. The FIG governs seven disciplines: Gymnastics for All, Men’s Artistic, Women’s Artistic, Rhythmic, Trampoline, Aerobic and Acrobatic. It counts 135 national member federations and boasts a 27-person staff at its international seat in Lausanne (SUI), host city of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
2014 Junior Pan American Championships
Daytona Beach, Fla.
May 9, 2014
First of three days of competition
Trampoline preliminaries (top eight, with 2 per country, advance to finals)
1. Nicole Ahsinger, San Diego, Calif./SoCal TTC, 92.755
2. Maggie Gallagher, Coto de Caza, Calif./World Elite Gymnastics, 92.260
3. Sophiane Methot, Canada, 91.675
Other U.S. finishes
4. Clare Johnson, Huntsville, Ala./The Matrix, 91.500
9. Meghan O’Connell, Middletown, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy, 89.060
1. Luis Armando Loria Cetin, Mexico, 96.890
2. Cody Gesuelli, Middletown, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy, 95.815
3. Spencer Reed, Tulsa, Okla./Oklahoma Extreme, 92.940
Other U.S. finishes
15. Colin Duda, Atlantic Highlands, N.J./Elite Trampoline Academy, 54.615
17. Ronald “Jake” Jacobson III, Fishers, Ind./The Matrix, 50.435
Individual – first half of the all-around
1. Laura Zeng, Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, 31.250
2. Nicole Kaloyanov, Woodbridge, Va./Gymnastics World, 29.100
3. Camilla Feeley, Lincolnshire, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, 28.150
1. Laura Zeng, Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, 15.650
2. Nicole Kaloyanov, Woodbridge, Va./Gymnastics World, 14.600
3. Camilla Feeley, Lincolnshire, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, 14.450
1. Laura Zeng, Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, 15.600
2. Nicole Kaloyanov, Woodbridge, Va./Gymnastics World, 14.500
3. Edna Garcia, Mexico, 13.800
Other U.S. finish
4. Camilla Feeley, Lincolnshire, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, 13.700
Group – five hoops – first half of the all-around
1. Brazil, 13.400
2. Canada, 13.100
3. Venezuela, 11.100
4. United States, 8.450