Preliminaries concluded yesterday at the Pan American Championships, with the U.S. men’s team finishing first and the women second to secure two places each at the debut of trampoline in the 2007 Pan American Games. Chris Estrada, Lafayette, La. paced the U.S. men, scoring 67.3 and finishing in first place going into finals today. Canadian Jason Burnett was second, followed by Ryan Weston, Pocatello, Id. Brittany Dircks, Orland Park, Ill. advanced for the women with a score of 63.7, behind Canadians Rosie MacLennan in first and Karen Cockburn in second. Amanda Bailey, Levelland, Tex. will also advance to finals with her sixth place finish.
In the Junior division, Nani Vercruyssen, Honolulu, Hi. took a large lead with her score of 60.8, followed by teammate, Dakota Earnest, Levelland, Tex. in second and Canadian Samantha Sendel in third. Only two U.S. athletes are allowed in the final, so the fourth place finish by Alaina Williams, Amarillo, Tex. will not allow her to advance. For the junior men, Philip Devine, Winnebago, Ill., the only U.S. competitor, leads the pack with a score of 62.1, followed by the two Canadians, Kyle Soehn and Philip Barbaro. More information will be posted following the final round of competition.
Other U.S. competitors were seniors Kaci Barry, San Diego, Cal., 8th, Erin Blanchard, Lafayette, La., 16th, Steven Gluckstein, Atlantic Highlands, NJ, 8th, and Kevin Strickland, Tinton Falls, NJ, 15th.