LIMA, Peru, Sept. 30, 2018 – On the final day of the 2018 Senior Pan American Championships in Lima, Peru, the United States won eight medals, four gold and four silver. 2016 Olympian and four-time U.S. champion Laura Zeng of Libertyville, Ill., won all four event gold medals, with Nastasya Generalova of Los Angeles/California Rhythms, claiming the hoop and clubs silver medals. Lili Mizuno of Northbrook, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics, snared the ball silver. The U.S. group nabbed the three balls/two ropes silver.
In the hoop final, Zeng and Mizuno took the top two spots. Zeng’s gold was courtesy of her 19.250. Mizuno’s 17.050 easily put her ahead of Mexico’s Marina Malpica, who was third with a 16.900. Zeng also was the ribbon champion with her 16.550. Mexico’s Karla Diaz and Brazil’s Barbara Domingos were second (15.200) and third (15.100), respectively. Mizuno just missed the podium with her 14.850 for fourth.
Zeng and Generalova went one-two in the ball and clubs finals. For ball, Zeng posted an 18.200, and Generalova scored a 16.450. Mexico’s Rut Castillo was third at 15.800. In the clubs final, Zeng garnered an 18.600, with Generalova receiving a 17.050. Canada’s Sophie Crane was third (16.350).
For three balls/two ropes, Mexico edged out the USA, 18.150 to 18.100, for the gold medal. Brazil received the bronze (16.500). The U.S. group was fifth in five hoops, claiming a 14.750. Brazil was first (20.950), followed by Mexico (19.150) and Canada (18.350).
The U.S. senior rhythmic group, which trains at North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, includes Dasha Baltovick of Highland Park, Ill.; Isabelle Connor of Manhattan Beach, Calif.; Ugne Dragunas of Darien, Ill.; Connie Du of Deerfield, Ill.; Elizaveta Pletneva of Caldwell, N.J.; and Nicole Sladkov of Vernon Hills, Ill. Kristina Sobolevskaya of Deerfield, Ill., is the alternate.
Earlier, the United States won the team gold medal, and Zeng was the all-around champion. The U.S. group claimed the all-around silver. Also, the United States qualified to send two individual gymnasts and the group to the Pan American Games next year.
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.