The Junior Pan American Championships kicked off from July 6th to July 8th in Santiago Chile. Quebec had strong representation as Nathan Rainville (70 kg), a former Cadet Pan Am Silver Medalist from the Patriotes de St-Cesaire and Connor Church (79 kg) from the Montreal Wrestling Club NTC, who took Bronze at last year’s event, competed on the Men’s side. They were joined by Sophia Bechard (55 kg), also from the Montreal Wrestling Club NTC, competing in her first international event.

Team Canada prepares for tournament (photo property of bigjoewrestling)

The competition would begin on Friday with the women taking to the mat. Sophia’s first match would pit her against Angelica Princesa Vicente Gonzalez of Puerto Rico. With a match that would go back and forth, Sophia would end up losing by points by a score of 9-6. Her next match would have her face off against a tough opponent from the United States, Virginia Belle Foard. Sophia would start the match off strong but lose via pin. Her next match would be against Pamela Nicole Banda Gomez of Mexico. Sophia would once again wrestle a strong match but come up just short, losing on points by a score of 3-1. Her final match would have her face Angie Elizabeth Zea Alvarado of Peru. Sophia would finish the tournament strongly by beating her final opponent 10-1 to finish off the tournament in 4th place.

Sophia Bechard vs. Puerto Rico

The following day, the men would take to the mat. Nathan’s first match would be against William Laureano Oyola of Argentina in the Quarter-finals. Nathan would take a 10-2 lead before pinning his opponent to advance to the semi-finals. In the Semi-Finals, Nathan would face Julian Michael George of Puerto Rico where he would lose a tough match by Technical Superiority by a score of 13-2. but would qualify wrestle for the Bronze Medal against Gabriel Da Silva Rodrigues Brito of Brazil. Nathan would wrestle a tough match and come out with a victory via pin (5-0) to take home a Bronze Medal!

Nathan goes for the pin against Brazil

Connor Church’s first match would also begin in the Quarter-finals against Isaac Jery Tenorio Mosquera of Ecuador. Connor would wrestle a dominant match, coming away with a 10-0 Technical Superiority victory to advance to the Semi-finals. In the Semi-finals, Connor would wrestle against Juan Diego Cardozo Ibata of Columbia. Despite a slow start, Connor would also win this match by Technical Superiority (13-2) to advance to the Gold medal finals against Gabriel Micaiaih Arnold of the United States. Despite a strong first half, Connor would lose via Technical Superiority (11-0) but would better his results from last year and finish off with a Silver Medal!

Connor Church vs. USA

Pan Am Silver Medalist

Congratulations to our athletes for their excellent performances at the Junior Pan Ams!

The Canadian Women (photo property of bigjoewrestling)

The Canadian Men (photo property of bigjoewrestling)