Montréal, June 23, 2013 — Sergio Pessoa, Michaël Fortin-Demers and Sarah-Myriam Mazouz all climbed to the third step of the podium this weekend, at the Pan-American Open presented in San Salvador, El Salvador.
On Sunday, Mazouz (-70 kg) was perfect all the way up to the semifinals, after beating in order the Guatemalan Jennifer Ortiz, the Australian Catherine Arscott, and the Brazilian Barbara Timo, the last two by way of ippon.
In the semis, the Quebecoise lost to the Brazilian Barbara Timo before going on to claim bronze by defeating the Australian judoka Sara Collins, again by ippon.
“I’m a little disappointed with my semifinal bout, Mazouz expained. I was too relaxed, and she’s a judoka that moves around a lot. She was always a half step faster than me. Besides that, I’m pretty satisfied with how things went because I improved on a number of things.”
3rd place finishes for Pessoa and Fortin-Demers
Fighting in the under 60 kg class, Pessoa won his first two bouts by ippon, Saturday, versus the Venezuelan Armando Maita and the American George Truong, before falling to the Brazilian Eric Takabatake, who surprised him with an ippon early on in the contest.
In the repechage, he took down the German Senne Wyns with a waza-ari, setting up his duel with American Nicholas Kossor for the bronze medal. The Quebecer would eventually manage an ippon against Kossor to take his place on the third step of the podium.
“It feels really good to make the podium, Pessoa pointed out. Last week I came very close, but this time I got the job done. It’s my third competition since having surgery on my knee, and I felt more comfortable and confident in executing my moves and hand positions on my opponent.”
The Ontarian Diego Sanchez (-60 kg) lost his first bout against the Spaniard Francisco Garrigos.
In the under 73 kg division, Michael Fortin-Demers of Québec went 3 for 3 in his preliminary fights. This included bouts versus the Brazilian Stanley Torres, whom he beat by waza-ari, and two wins by ippon over the Australian Jake Bensted and the Venezuelan Ludwig Ortiz.
“I didn’t obtain good results in my first World Cup competitions, Fortin-Demers said. I was coming back from a herniated disk and I also changed categories (from -66 kg). I learnt from other tournaments about how I could manage to get better results. For me, it was really a question of gaining more confidence.”
In the semifinals, he succumbed to the Brit Daniel Williams by way of a waza-ari in the final minute of regulation. In the bronze medal bout, he got the better of the American Robert Lee, winning with an ippon in the second minute of the contest.
“I came very close to getting into the finals. I was ahead in the match but he caught me off guard, he explained. Against Lee, I was happy to get my revenge. He’d previously defeated me in two straight World Cups, but I knew that I had it in me to beat him, since I had done so twice before.”
Also in the -73 kg class, the Quebecois Simon Ashwood and the Ontarian Derek Langlois both finished with identical records of one win and one loss.
McGrandle and Burt finish in 5th
The Ontarian Zach Burt and the British Colombian Scott McGrandle took different paths to the same result, both going home with 5th place classifications in the -81 kg division.
Burt was perfect through the preliminary round before losing in the semis to the American Jonathan Fernandez. In one of the two bronze medal finals, he was beaten by the Venezualan Arturo Zapata.
As for McGrandle, he had to go through the repechage after losing his second prelim bout to Jonathan Fernandez. In the repechage, he defeated the Australian Eoin Coughlan before falling to the Brazilian Henrique Moura Mauro, barely missing out on the podium in the process.
Maxime Raymond, also fighting in the -81 kg category, won his first contest but was defeated in his second.
In the under 52 kg class, the Ontarian Andrea Madgett finished her day with a mark of 1-1.
Marc Deschênes (-90 kg) and Stefan Zwiers (-100 kg) were both unable to record a victory.
Written by Sportcom for Judo Canada
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