Lopez Returns to Competition, Wins Fifth Pan Am Games Gold
Friday, August 9, 2019 - 04:05 By Taylor Miller
LIMA, Peru – Three-time Olympic champion and four-time World champion Mijain LOPEZ (CUB) made his return after taking more than a year off from competing. In his first tournament back, Lopez claimed his fifth Pan American Games gold medal, winning the 130 kg weight class in Greco-Roman on Thursday in Lima, Peru.
To start his day, Lopez rattled off a quick 8-0 tech fall over Luciano DEL RIO (ARG). In the semifinals, he bested 2017 World bronze medalist and former teammate Yasmani ACOSTA FERNANDEZ (CHI), 4-0.
For gold, Lopez dominated Moises PEREZ HELLBURG (VEN) in 2:02 with an 11-0 victory, highlighted by an impressive four-point throw.
Two other Cubans earned the top spot on the podium in Greco-Roman, including 2016 Olympic champion Ismael BORRERO MOLINA (CUB) and Gabriel ROSILLO KINDELAN (CUB).
Wrestling at 67 kg, Borrero recorded three technical falls on the way to his first Pan Am Games title and did not give up a single point.
In the final, Borrero cruised past 2019 Pan American Championships bronze medalist Shalom VILLEGAS REQUENA (VEN) with a 12-0 technical fall.
At 97 kg, Rosillo won his third Pan American event of the year, adding to his 2019 Senior and Junior Pan Am Championship golds.
In a rematch of the Senior Pan Am finals from April, Rosillo downed 2016 Junior World bronze medalist G’Angelo HANCOCK (USA) in Wednesday’s gold-medal match.
A second-period four-point throw helped Rosillo separate himself from the American and eventually win the bout, 7-2.
Three other countries picked up gold medals in Greco this week, including Ecuador, United States and Venezuela.
Andres MONTAÑO ARROYO (ECU) earned his second-straight Pan Am Games championship, winning the 60 kg bracket.
After a 6-6 show-stopping win over two-time Pan Am champion Luis ORTA SANCHEZ (CUB) in the first round, Montano dominated the competition, securing two technical falls to propel him to gold, including an 8-0 victory in the finals over two-time Pan Am bronze winner Dicther TORO CASTAÑEDA (COL).
Winning the title at 77 kg was three-time Pan Am Championships gold medalist Pat SMITH (USA), who grinded out some solid wins en route to his first Pan Am Games gold.
In the championship match, Smith outlasted 2015 Pan Am Games champion Wuilexis RIVAS ESPINOZA (VEN) with a 3-2 decision.
Venezuela did, however, win a gold on Wednesday night as two-time Pan Am Championships gold winner Luis AVENDAÑO ROJAS (VEN) picked up the win at 87 kg.
Avendano put together an impressive day, defeating 2018 U23 World silver medalist Daniel GREGORICH HECHAVARRIA (CUB) in the semifinals before surpassing four-time Pan Am medalist Alfonso LEYVA YEPEZ (MEX) in the finals, 5-3.
In the team race, Cuba was first with 120 points, followed by Venezuela with 110 and USA with 91.
2019 PAN AMERICAN GAMES
at Lima, Peru
GOLD - Andres MONTAÑO ARROYO (ECU) df. Dicther TORO CASTAÑEDA (COL), 10-1
BRONZE - Luis ORTA SÁNCHEZ (CUB) df. Anthony PALENCIA PUENTES (VEN), 8-0
BRONZE - Ildar HAFIZOV (USA) df. Emilio PEREZ ALONZO (MEX), 7-2
GOLD - Ismael BORRERO MOLINA (CUB) df. Shalom VILLEGAS REQUENA (VEN), 12-0
BRONZE - Manuel LÓPEZ SALCEDO (MEX) df. Nilton SOTO GARCIA (PER), 3-1
BRONZE - Ellis COLEMAN (USA) df. Luis DE LEÓN (DOM), fall
GOLD - Patrick SMITH (USA) df. Wuilexis RIVAS ESPINOZA (VEN), 3-2
BRONZE - Jair CUERO MUÑOZ (COL) dec. Emmanuel BENITEZ CASTRO (MEX), 5-1
BRONZE - Yosvanys PEÑA FLORES (CUB) df. Angelo MARQUES MOREIRA (BRA), 8-0
GOLD - Luis AVENDAÑO ROJAS (VEN) df. Alfonso LEYVA YEPEZ (MEX), 5-3
BRONZE - Daniel GREGORICH HECHAVARRÍA (CUB) df. Josef RAU (USA), 8-2
BRONZE - Alvis ALMENDRA (PAN) df. Carlos MUÑOZ JARAMILLO (COL), 2-1
GOLD - Gabriel ROSILLO KINDELÁN (CUB) df. G’Angelo HANCOCK (USA), 7-2
BRONZE - Kevin MEJIA CASTILLO (HON) df. Thomas BARREIRO (CAN), 8-0
BRONZE - Luillys PEREZ MORA (VEN) df. José ARIAS PAREDES (DOM), 9-0
GOLD - Mijaín LÓPEZ NÚÑEZ (CUB) df. Moises PEREZ HELLBURG (VEN), 11-0
BRONZE - Yasmani ACOSTA FERNÁNDEZ (CHI) df. Luciano DEL RIO (ARG), 8-0
BRONZE - Leo SANTANA HEREDIA (DOM) df. Edgardo LOPEZ MORELL (PUR), 2-0