The U.S. won six of the seven championship bouts at the 2012 Women's Continental Championships on April 5 in Cornwall, Ont. Seventeen- year-old Claressa Shields (Flint, Mich.) scored her first international gold medal in convincing style, topping Mary Spencer, Canada's three-time world champion, 27-14. Alex Love (Monroe, Wash.), Marlen Esparza (Houston, Texas), Tiara Brown (Lehigh Acres, Fla.), Mikaela Mayer (Los Angeles, Calif.) and Franchon Crews (Baltimore, Md.) also earned gold medals for Team USA.
ONE FOR THE RECORD BOOKS
Team USA put on a record-setting performance at the 2012 Junior and Cadet World Championships in Moscow, earning 12 medals from March 31-April 7. The U.S. scored nine individual medals - the most of any nation - and finished second in the overall medal count. The men's foil team scored its third- consecutive junior world championship, defeating Russia, 45-36. The women's foil team picked up a silver medal, while the women's epee team brought home the bronze medal.
Shabazz Muhammad (Las Vegas, Nev.) tallied a record-setting 35 points, but the USA Junior National Select Team fell to the World Select Team, 84-75, at the Nike Hoop Summit on April 7 in Portland, Ore.
After a rough start, Team USA ended the week on a high note with a 7-6 win over the Czech Republic at the 2012 Men's World Championship on April 5 in Basel, Switzerland. The U.S. concluded the tournament in eighth place with a 4-7 overall record.
Sarah Hammer (Temecula, Calif.) earned Team USA's first medal at the 2012 UCI Track World Championships in Melbourne, Australia, with a third-place effort in the women's omnium. Hammer's podium finish gave her an automatic nomination to the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team. The U.S. also earned a pair of top-five finishes from Cari Higgins (Boulder, Colo.) in the scratch race and the women's trio in the team pursuit event.
Team USA scored two gold and two silver medals on the opening day of the 2012 Continental MTB Championships on April 7 in Puebla, Mexico. Grace Alexander (Boise, Idaho) earned the title in the junior women's cross country contest. Jacqueline Harmony (Sedona, Ariz.) also grabbed a gold medal in the elite women's downhill competition. Men's riders Keegan Swenson (Park City, Utah) and Neko Mulally (Reading, Pa.) tallied second-place finishes for the U.S.
Will Faudree (Midland, Texas) and Phillip Dutton (West Grove, Pa.) rode to the top of the leaderboard at the conclusion of the Fork Horse Trials on April 6 in Norwood, N.C.
Christopher Hickey (Colora, Md.) and horse Balissa HTF took top honors at the Global Dressage Festival National 2 Horse Show on April 5 in Wellington, Fla.
Team USA finished its three-game series with Australia on April 8 with a 2-1 record. The U.S. defeated the Aussies, 1-0 and 2-1, before falling in the third match, 3-0.
Steven Legendre (Port Jefferson, N.Y.) earned the gold medal in the floor exercise and won the vault silver medal on April 8 at the world cup in Zibo City, China. Teammate Danell Leyva (Miami, Fla.) took fourth on the horizontal bar.
The U.S. Women's National Team recorded two early victories at the 2012 IIHF Women's World Championship in Burlington, Vt. Team USA opened play by defeating Canada, 9-2, and scoring a shutout win over Russia, 9-0.
Rhonda Rajsich (Phoenix, Ariz.) defeated Argentina's Natalia Corti, 15-2, 15-2, in the opening match of the XXV Pan American Racquetball Championships on April 1 in Temuco, Chile.
The final day of racing at Princess Sofia Trophy Regatta brought gold and silver medals to Team USA in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. Team Maclaren - comprised of Anna Tunnicliffe (Plantation, Fla.), Molly Vandemoer (Stanford, Calif.) and Debbie Capozzi (Bayport, N.Y.) - defeated a French team in the women's match race to score the gold medal on April 7. Zach Railey (Clearwater, Fla.) held his position to secure the silver medal in the Finn event.
The U.S. Women's National Team scored on three set plays to defeat Brazil, 3-0, in its second and final match of the Kirin Challenge Cup on April 3 in Chiba, Japan. Two days prior, Team USA tied Japan, 1-1.
The U.S. U-17 men's team defeated the United Arab Emirates, 4-0, and lost to Portugal, 0-1, in the first two matches of Group B play at the 40th Mondial Minimes in Montaigu, France, on April 3 and 5.
The U.S. scored three podium finishes at the 2012 World Junior Taekwondo Championships in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. Cheyenne Lewis (Elk Grove, Calif.) led the U.S. with a silver medal in the female featherweight (-49kg) division. Crystal Weekes (Staten Island, N.Y.) and Gigi Gil (Camarillo, Calif.) each brought home bronze medals.
The U.S. advanced to the semifinals of the Davis Cup for the first time since 2008 after defeating France, 3-2, on April 8 in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France. John Isner (Tampa, Fla.) gave the U.S. the win with his victory over Jo- Wilfried Tsonga, 6-3, 7-6 (4), 5-7, 6-3.
TRACK & FIELD
U.S. athletes concluded the 2012 World Masters Indoor Championships in Jyvaskyla, Finland, with 61 medals, including 25 gold, 25 silver and 11 bronze medals. Phil Raschker (Marietta, Ga.), Robert Lida (Wichita, Kan.), Bill Collins (Westchester County, N.Y.), Antwon Dussett (Peoria, Ill.) and Jeanne Daprano (Fayetteville, Ga.) won multiple gold medals.
Beach volleyball players Matt Fuerbringer (Costa Mesa, Calif.) and Nick Lucena (Santa Barbara, Calif.) took silver at the Techion Challenge on April 5 at in Haifa, Israel. Meanwhile, the U.S. women's team of Lauren Fendrick (Carlsbad, Calif.) and Brooke Hanson (Woodland Hills, Calif.) captured the bronze medal.
CALENDAR - APRIL
1-19 - Track & Field Chula Vista, CA U.S. Paralympics Track & Field Ambulatory/Wheelchair Camp
8-15 - Track & Field Chula Vista, CA U.S. Paralympics Track & Field Throws Camp
9 - Rowing Chula Vista, CA 2012 Paralympic Trials - Rowing
9 - Rowing Chula Vista, CA 2012 National Selection Regatta II/Non-Qualified Small Boat Trials
12-14 - Canoe & Kayak Charlotte, N.C. U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Whitewater Slalom
12-15 - Modern Pentathlon Budapest, Hungary World Cup No. 3
12-22 - Field Hockey Auckland, New Zealand Women's Four Nations Tournament
13-16 - Fencing Virginia Beach, Va. North American Cup
14 - Track & Field Pomona, Calif. Pomona-Pitzer Track & Field Invitational
14-21 - Curling Taarnby, Denmark World Senior Championships