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U.S. senior men win team title, women capture silver as Pan American Championships end
posted on 07/17/2022

© Ricardo Bufolin

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (July 17, 2022) - The U.S. men weathered a late surge from runner-up Brazil to claim the 2022 Pan American Championships team title Sunday evening at Rio de Janeiro's Parque Olimpico - Arena Carioca 01. Earlier in the day, U.S. gymnasts took silver in the senior women's team competition, bested only by host Brazil and 2020 Olympic all-around silver medalist Rebeca Andrade.

Standout performances from Yul Moldauer (Wellington, Colo./5280 Gymnastics), who delivered the session's high scores on floor exercise (14.400), pommel horse (14.000) and parallel bars (14.633), and Riley Loos (El Dorado Hills, Calif./Stanford University), who topped the scoresheet on vault (14.633), catapulted the U.S. men's team - which also featured Brody Malone (Belfast, Tenn./Stanford University), Colt Walker (Cedar Park, Texas/Stanford University) and Shane Wiskus (Minneapolis, Minn./U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Training Center) - to the top of the podium. They outpaced the Brazilians 245.698-244.234. Canada rounded out the top three with a 240.034. Collectively, U.S. gymnasts notched the competition's high scores on floor exercise (42.266), pommel horse (39.666) and vault (43.533) en route to the title.

In the women's competition, U.S. team members Skye Blakely (Frisco, Texas/WOGA Gymnastics), Kayla DiCello (Boyds, Md./Hill's Gymnastics), Zoe Miller (Spring, Texas/World Champions Centre), Elle Mueller (Ham Lake, Minn./Twin City Twisters) and Lexi Zeiss (Omaha, Neb./Twin City Twisters) improved their qualifying score by more than half a point but were clipped by the home team 162.999-161.000. The Canadians took third with a 155.534. The Americans led the way on floor exercise (39.233) and uneven bars (42.334), bolstered on the latter by Miller's session-high 14.467.

Over the course of the four-day event, U.S. seniors collected 16 medals and six titles, while junior athletes added 19 medals, including 10 gold. Zeiss was also one of two gymnasts selected to receive the event’s Sportsmanship Award for her embodiment of excellence, respect and friendship throughout the competition.