By Dane McGuire
As the month of July comes to a close and the Olympics are underway in Tokyo, here’s where things stand for Team USA’s combat sports teams as of July 31.
“American 18-year-old Anastasija Zolotic became the first U.S. woman to win gold in a taekwondo event and did so with a series of dominating scores:11-4, 17-9, 28-5 and 25-17. Upsets abounded, with Iranian-born refugee competitor Kimia Alizadeh defeating two-time gold medalist Jade Jones of Great Britain and top men’s seed Lee Dae-Hoon of South Korea giving up a big lead and losing in the Round of 16 to eventual champion Ulegbek Rashitov.
That update is courtesy of NBCOlympics.com.
Team USA published the following update on taekwondo a day later:
“Paige McPherson fell just shy of bringing home her second Olympic medal in taekwondo, but her fourth-place finish in the women’s 67 kg. class capped an impressive showing for the women of Team USA …”
“McPherson, also known as “McFierce” was competing in her third Olympic Games and looking for her second medal. Now 30, McPherson won bronze in 2012 and finished 11th in Rio in 2016. Seeded fifth in Tokyo, she got through the round of 16 with an 8-5 win over Farida Azizova of Azerbaijan, then defeated Turkey’s Nur Tatar, the fourth seed, 3-1 in the quarterfinals. A 15-4 loss to No. 1 Matea Jelic of Croatia in the semifinal meant foiled McPherson’s hopes of making it to the gold-medal match and set up the bronze medal contest against Egypt’s Hedaya Wahba.”
McPherson and Zolotic were the only U.S. representatives for taekwondo, ending competition for Team USA.
As of July 29, MMAJunkie’s sister site BoxingJunkie reported the nearly flawless men’s boxing team suffered its first defeat of these Games and it now sits at 7-1 as of that writing. The team had been 6-0 to that point.
BoxingJunkie reported July 29 the U.S women’s team is 3-2.
On July 31 U.S. gold medal hope Keyshawn Davis put away top seed and 2016 silver medalist Sofiane Oumiha of France by knockout in the second round. The winning shot was a golden right hand to the jaw. Davis now faces Gabil Mamedov of the Russian Olympic Committee.
The Team USA website did not have more current boxing updates as of this writing.
Karate is a demonstration sport at the Olympics this year but there are no Team USA updates as of July 31. As of July 31, all U.S. judo competitors are out of competition, having failed to medal. Team USA’s wrestler’s have not yet competed.