October 30, 2020

Gold medals scarce for US at Pan Am Games


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Elizabeth Pelton of the United States won the gold medal and set a new Pan American record.

GUADALAJARA, Mexico (AP) — Gold proved to be scarce for the United States on Thursday at the Pan American Games.

After days of winning title after title, the Americans stalled a bit on Day 6, earning only two gold medals — one in swimming and one in shooting.

“We had a meeting about winning the gold,” American swimmer Elizabeth Pelton said after finishing first in the women’s 200-meter backstroke, the final swimming event of the night. “Definitely was the goal for tonight.”

Besides Pelton’s victory, the United States also earned its sixth shooting gold of the games and 12th medal in the sport when Glenn Eller won the men’s double trap.

Although gold was tough to find in Mexico on Thursday, the medals still came. With 19 medal events on the programme, Americans won 16 medals overall to increase their lead at the top of the table.

The United States now has 34 gold and 98 overall, while Brazil remains in second place with 14 gold and 42 overall.

Pelton avoided an American whitewash at the top of the swimming podium by winning the evening’s final gold. Her winning time of 2 minutes, 8.99 seconds bettered the previous Pan American Games record of 2:10.57, set by American swimmer Teresa Crippen four years ago in Rio de Janeiro. Teammate Bonnie Brandon earned silver.

The American women have excelled in the swimming pool. Entering Thursday’s session they had won all but one of the gold medals, but Ashley McGregor of Canada took the women’s 200 breaststroke.

“I don’t think we are lacking at all as far as energy goes, but it’s been a long meet,” said American swimmer Michelle McKeehan, who won bronze in that race behind teammate Haley Spencer. “And it’s a long meet at the Olympics, too, so hopefully we can just take this and learn from it to try to keep our energy very high.”

Also, Olympic champion Cesar Cielo won another “splash and dash” gold medal, defending his title in the men’s 50-meter freestyle. The Brazilian won in a Pan American Games record 21.58 seconds.


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