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Ecaterina Guica shines in debut

Montréal, October 27, 2012 – Ecaterina Guica climbed to the top of the podium in the under 52 kg class, Friday, at the Europe Cup presented in Boras, Sweden. The Quebecoise, who competed in the under 57 kg division, was making her international debut in the new, lower weight class.

Guica won her first bout by ippon against the Portuguese Ines Ribeiro. “I knew she wasn’t one on of the stronger judokas in the division, but that it would be good fight, the 19-year-old explained. I managed to win on the ground with an arm lock.”

She then went on to defeat the Russian Elizaveta Stepanova in her second bout. “This was more difficult. I scored a waza-ari early on by catching the leg of my opponent, but it was key that I manage the fight responsibly the rest of the way, avoiding any errors or penalties.”

In the semifinals, Guica eliminated the Russian Olga Gagarina. “I started with a yuko, and shortly after I scored an ippon with a technique that I’ve been practicing for awhile now. It’s always nice when something you work on a lot actually pans out in a competition.”

In the final, the Quebecoise finished her great run with a victory over the German Theresa Stoll; winning with two yukos and an ippon, thanks to another well timed arm lock.

“It was a great day, I’m even a bit surprised by the result. The last time that I participated in this competition, I didn’t even make it out of the first round. It’s fun to see this kind of improvement!”

The switch to a lower weight class was a positive one, despite the fact that she had little knowledge of her new competitors. “At first I was a worried that I would have a drop in energy after shedding pounds to make weight, but in the end I think I’ll stay in the under 52 kg class.”

Alister Ward, also from Quebec, managed a 5th place finish in the under 66 kg category. He won his first bout, but dropped his second decision. In the repechage, he triumphed twice before falling in one of the two bronze medal bouts.

Charles Breton-Leduc had less luck, coming away with a 7th place classification in the under 60 kg class. Up and down all day, the judoka followed a win and a loss in the first two rounds with the same result in the repechage, bowing out in the quarterfinals.

Saturday’s results were less encouraging for the Canadian contingent, as Jonah Burt and Zachary Burt were the only judokas to classify.

Jonah, competing in the under 90 kg class, and Zachary in the under 81 kg, both obtained 9th place finishes. The former won two of his four bouts, while the latter managed one victory out of three decisions.

Vincent Marticotte (-73 kg, 1 win – 2 losses), Simon Ashwood-Smith (-73 kg, 1-1) and Sarah-Myriam Mazouz (-70 kg, 0-2), all three from Québec, Gabrielle DesForges (-63 kg, 0-2), of the Northwest Territories, as well as John Alex Nagy (-73 kg, 0-1) of Ontario, all walked away from Boras empty-handed.


Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada