USA, Briones win gold at 2018 Junior Pan Am Championships
posted on 06/14/2018

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina, June 14, 2018 -- The USA won the men’s team title at the 2018 Junior Pan American Championships at the City of Buenos Aires (Argentina) Club. Brandon Briones of Gilbert, Ariz./Aspire Kids Sports Center, won the all-around gold medal. The USA will compete in the event finals tomorrow.

In the team competition, the U.S. men scored a 234.600 to win the title. Brazil was second with a 233.050, while Canada won the bronze with a 228.250.

In the all-around, Briones won gold with a 79.150 followed by Brazil’s Diego Brajao (78.600) and Canada’s Felix Dolci (78.100). JR Chou of Cypress, Texas/Cypress Academy of Gymnastics, just missed the podium, finishing fourth with a 77.400, while Taylor Burkhart of Morrison, Colo./5280 Gymnastics, finished fifth (76.200). Isaiah Drake of Los Angeles/Gymnastics Olympica USA, scored a 75.750 to finish seventh.

The U.S. men’s individual event scores were; Briones – floor exercise/13.200, pommel horse/12.500, still rings/13.250, vault/14.350, parallel bars/12.850 and horizontal bar/13.000; Burkhart – floor exercise/12.150, pommel horse/12.400, still rings/12.050, vault/13.700, parallel bars/12.950 and horizontal bar/12.950; Chou – floor exercise/13.250, pommel horse/13.150, still rings/12.450, vault/13.900, parallel bars/12.000 and horizontal bar/12.650; and Drake – floor exercise/12.850, pommel horse/11.400, still rings/12.850, vault/13.650, parallel bars/12.150 and horizontal bar/12.850. Joshua Karnes of Erie, Pa./Lakettes Gymnastics Academy, is the alternate.

Here are the U.S. men's event final qualifications: floor, pommel horse and vault - Briones and Chou; still rings - Briones and Drake; parallel bars and horizontal bar - Briones and Burkhart.

Earlier in the competition, the U.S. women won the team title, and Jordan Bowers of Lincoln, Neb./Solid Rock Gymnastics, won the all-around title. Leanne Wong of Overland Park, Kansas/GAGE, was third in the all-around. Here are the U.S. women’s event final qualifications: vault – Tori Tatum of Chanhassen, Minn./Twin City Twisters, and Wong; bars and beam – Bowers and Wong and floor – Bowers and Tatum.

The event finals schedule is (times are subject to change): June 15 – men’s and women’s event finals, 10 a.m. ET (men’s floor, Pommel horse and still rings; women’s vault, uneven bars), and 3:10 p.m. ET (men’s vault, parallel bars and horizontal bar; women’s balance beam and floor).

The competition is a qualifier for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games, which will be held in Buenos Aires in October. Seven athletes, with a maximum of one per country, qualify for a Youth Olympic Games berth based on the all-around results from the qualification competition. To be eligible to qualify a berth to the Youth Olympic Games for their country, female gymnasts must be born in 2003 and male gymnasts born in 2001-02. The USA is trying to qualify in men’s gymnastics and trampoline. The U.S. has already qualified for rhythmic gymnastics.

Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. The organization is committed to creating a culture that empowers and supports its athletes and focuses on its highest priority, the safety and well-being of the athletes. USA Gymnastics has already taken specific, concrete steps to strengthen its safe sport policies and procedures. The organization’s disciplines include men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, acrobatic gymnastics and gymnastics for all (formerly known as group gymnastics). For more complete information, log on to usagym.org.