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EVERETT, Wash., March 18, 2012 – The U.S. junior men and women’s artistic gymnasts won a total of 14 medals during today’s Kellogg’s Pacific Rim Championships event finals, held Sunday afternoon at the Comcast Arena in Everett, Wash.
Katelyn Ohashi of Plano, Texas/WOGA, added three more gold medals to her team and all-around gold medals from Friday, for a total of five gold medals over the course of the championships.
"It feels amazing to walk away from the Kellogg’s Pacific Rim Championships with five gold medals," Ohashi said. "It’s such an honor to be here and to represent USA."
The U.S. women started out strong on vault grabbing the gold and silver medals. Lexie Priessman of Cincinnati, Ohio/Cincinnati Gymnastics, won the gold with her two-and-a-half twisting Yurchenko and a score of 15.325. Amelia Hundley also of Cincinnati, Ohio/Cincinnati Gymnastics, won the silver with her Yurchenko double full, which scored 14.825. Canada’s Maegan Chant won the bronze medal with a score of 13.925.
"It was a great feeling to be up there and represent the USA and get the gold medal," Priessman said. "It was great to be out here with Katelyn and Amelia, knowing that we’re such a strong team."
Ohashi dominated the uneven bars competition with a score of 14.625. Her routine included an L grip Endo to straddled Jaeger. Canada’s Victoria Kayen Woo won the silver medal with a score of 13.100, and Japan’s Sakura Yumoto won bronze with a 12.875.
Ohashi also was head and shoulders above her competitors on balance beam posting a 15.275 for her incredibly difficult routine, which included a standing Arabian and a flawless back handspring, back handspring, layout full twist series. Nina Lou of China was second with a score of 14.700, while Maria Kharenkova of Russia won bronze with a 14.025.
On floor exercise, Ohashi took home her third gold medal of the day with her routine which included a back one-and-a-half twist to punch front double twist, a piked, full twisting double back, and dismounted with a 2.5 twist to punch front full. She scored a 14.950.
Hundley scored a 14.300 winning the silver medal for her routine which included a piked, full twisting double back mount, a round off, 2.5 twist to punch layout, a 1.5 twist to double pike and a double tuck to straddle jump for her dismount. Kharenkova won the bronze medal with a score of 13.950.
Marvin Kimble of Milwaukee, Wis./Swiss Turners Gymnastics, and Sean Melton of Orlando, Fla./U.S. Olympic Training Center, started men’s event finals with two medals on floor exercise winning the silver and bronze medals with scores of 14.150 and 14.100, respectively. Japan’s Koji Nomomura won the gold scoring a 14.575.
Japan’s Kaito Imabayashi won the pommel horse title with a score of 14.850, while Russia’s Grygorii Zyrianov earned the silver medal with a score of 14.000. USA’s Akash Modi of Morganville, N.J./Monmouth Gymnastics Academy, won the bronze scoring 13.950.
On rings, China’s Guanhua Wu won the title scoring 14.450. Russia’s Sergei Stepanov won the silver with a score of 14.150, and USA’s Kimble won the bronze with a score of 14.000. Kimble’s rings routine dismounted with stuck half-in, half out.
Melton and Kimble went 1-2 on vault, each performing a front handspring double front vault. Melton scored 15.875 and Kimble a 15.850, to win the gold and silver medals, respectively. Brody-Jai Hennessy of Australia won the bronze with a score of 15.550.
Melton hit a strong parallel bars routine complete with a peach half, peach, giant combination to win the gold medal with a score of 14.400. China’s Kangye Xu won the silver medal with a score of 14.225. There was a tie for the bronze medal between Japan’s Imabayashi and Modi, who both scored a 14.125. Modi dismounted with a full twisting double back, a high difficulty skill that is rarely seen in competition.
"Winning parallel bars and vault was awesome," Melton said. "I’m so proud of these guys. We came in here to win as many medals as we could, and we got more than we could have ever asked for."
On horizontal bar, Modi tied for fourth place (13.300), while Kimble posted a 13.250 for seventh.
The competition schedule is as follows.
- 6 p.m. – Men’s & Women’s Gymnastics, Senior Individual Event Finals
7 p.m. – Synchronized Trampoline Competition
Held every two years, the Pacific Rim Championships were held in Honolulu in 2004 and 2006; San Jose in 2008; and Melbourne, Australia, in 2010. In 2010, the USA won both the men’s and women’s team titles and three of the all-around titles – John Orozco of the Bronx, N.Y./U.S. Olympic Training Center, junior men; Jordyn Wieber of DeWitt, Mich./Gedderts’ Twistars USA, junior women; and Rebecca Bross of Plano, Texas/WOGA, senior women. Past all-around champions include the USA’s Paul Hamm, Carly Patterson, and Nastia Liukin.
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