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Koontz, Miranda, Jones, Smith win Pan American Greco-Roman golds, and Boykin adds a bronze

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

Pat Smith (USA) tosses Horacio Miranda of Argentina at 72 kg at the 2022 Pan American Championships. Photo by Tony Rotundo, Wrestlers Are Warriors.

ACAPULCO, Mexico – The United States won gold medals in four of the seven Greco-Roman weight classes contested on the first day of the Pan American Championships on Thursday and added a bronze medal for a five-medal haul.

Claiming gold medals for Team USA were Brady Koontz at 55 kg, Randon Miranda at 60 kg, Sam Jones at 63 kg and two-time World Team member Pat Smith at 77 kg. It was a fourth career Pan American Championships title for Smith, while Koontz, Miranda and Jones won their first Pan American Championships title.

Koontz clinched the gold medal in the morning session, beating both of his opponents in a three-athlete roundrobin. Koontz opened with an 11-0 technical fall over Brandon Escobar Amador of Honduras, and won his second bout with a 9-1 technical fall over 2018 Youth Olympic Games bronze medalist Axel Salas Esquivel of Mexico. He finished with a forfeit over Gemerson Moura Dos Santos of Brazil.


Miranda won his first career Senior Pan American title with a 12-8 victory over Samuel Gurria Vigueras of Mexico. In the first period, he scored a point on a passivity and two points on a leg foul on Gurria after he tried a reverse lift. There was an active exchange which officials gave four points to Garria. Miranda challenged and the score was changed to Miranda leading 9-2 at the break. In the second period, there was a two-and-two exchange to make it 11-4. Gurria hit a four-point headlock, with Miranda getting a reversal for the final 12-8 score. It was Miranda’s second career Pan American Championships medal, to go along with a silver in 2021.

Jones was dominant in a first-period 11-0 technical fall over Jose Rodriguez Hernandez of Mexico. Jones scored two early points, one on a step out and the second on a passivity call. In par terre, Jones had two huge lift and throws, the first one for four points and the second one for five points. His weight had only two competitors, so this was his only match of the day. It was his second career Pan American Championships medal, to go along with a bronze in 2016.

Smith put on a show in his final match as well, scoring an 8-0 technical fall over Horacio Miranda of Argentina in just 1:30. Smith scored first on a step out, then got a point on a passivity. While in par terre, Smith tilted Miranda for two, then lifted and threw Miranda with a four-point throw to secure the 8-0 technical fall in just 1:30. Smith finished the event with a perfect 4-0 record in a five-athlete round robin, including three technical falls.

Smith has been dominant at the Pan American level, with four Pan American Championships gold medals (2015, 2016, 2017, 2022) a 2019 Pan American Games title, and a 2020 Pan American Championships silver medal.

Nick Boykin won a bronze medal at 97 kg, with an injury default win over Eduardo Gajardo Meneses of Chile in the bronze medal round. He opened with a 9-0 technical fall over Luis Rivera Alvarado of Mexico. Boykin was defeated in the semifinals by veteran star Kevin Mejia Castillo of Honduras in an 8-0 technical fall.

Two other U.S. athletes competed on Thursday, with Hayden Tuma placing seventh at 67 kg and Tanner Farmer finishing eighth at 130 kg.

The Greco-Roman competition will complete on Friday with the final three weight classes, 77 kg, 82 kg and 87 kg. Women’s freestyle begins on Friday at four weight classes, 55 kg, 59 kg, 65 kg and 72 kg. Session times are 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. local time, which is the same as U.S. Central Time Zone. All of the action is live on FloWrestling.


At Acupulco, Mexico, May 5, 2022

Greco-Roman medalists

55 kg

Gold – Brady Koontz (USA)

Silver - Axel Andre Salas Esquival (Mexico)

Bronze - Brandon Jesus Escobar Amador (Honduras)

60 kg

Gold - Randon Miranda (USA)

Silver - Samuel Gurria Vigueras (Mexico)

Bronze - Joao Marco Benavides Rochabrun (Peru)

Bronze - Dicther Hans Toro Castaneda (Colombia)

63 kg

Gold - Sam Jones (USA)

Silver - Jose Rodriguez Hernandez (Mexico)

67 kg

Gold - Julian Horta Acevedo (Colombia)

Silver - Kenedy Anderson Moraes Pedrosa (Brazil)

Bronze - Enyer Manuel Feliciano (Dominican Republic)

Bronze - Nilton Gonzalo Marcos Soto Garcia (Peru)

72 kg

Gold - Patrick Smith (USA)

Silver - Edsson Rafael Olmos Gutierrez (Mexico)

Bronze - Cristian Estuardo Mejia Tepen (Guatemala)

97 kg

Gold - Kevin Mejia Castillo (Honduras)

Silver - Juan Luis Conde Ibanez (Cuba)

Bronze - Carlos Alberto Adames Palmer (Dominican Republic)

Bronze - Nicholas Allen Boykin (USA)

130 kg

Gold – Oscar Pino Hinds (Cuba)

Silver - Eduard Soghomonyan (Brazil)

Bronze - Yasmani Acosta Fernandez (Chile)

Bronze - Leo Dalis Santana Heredia (Dominican Republic)

U.S. Greco-Roman performances

55 kg: Brady Koontz (Ohio RTC/Titan Mercury WC), gold medal

WIN Brandon Escobar Amador (Honduras), tech. fall, 11-0, 1:56

WINAxel Salas Esquivel (Mexico), tech. fall, 9-1, 5:31

WIN Gemerson Moura Dos Santos (Brazil), forfeit

60 kg: Randon Miranda (Rise RTC), gold medal

WIN Emerson Felipe Ordonez (Guatemala), tech. fall 11-1, 3:36

WIN Marat Garipov (Brazil), 7-1

WIN Joao Benavides Rochabrun (Peru), 8-7

WIN Samuel Gurria Vigueras (Mexico), 12-8

63 kg: Sam Jones (New York AC), gold medal

WIN Jose Rodriguez Hernandez (Mexico) ,11-0, 2:08

67 kg: Hayden Tuma (Suples WC), 7th place

WIN Mauricio Lovera (Argentina), tech. fall 11-0, 2:38

LOSS Diego Martinez de Leija (Mexico), 8-4

72 kg: Pat Smith (Minnesota Storm), gold medal

WIN Cristian Mejia Tepen (Guatemala), tech fall 9-0, 1:58

WIN Eddson Olmos Gutierrez (Mexico), 4-2

WIN Angel Cortes Bonilla (Panama), tech. fall, 8-0 1:47

WIN Horacio Miranda (Argentina), tech fall 8-0, 1:30

97 kg: Nick Boykin (Sunkist Kids/Ohio RTC), bronze medal

WIN Luis Rivera Alvarado (Mexico), tech. fall, 9-0, 3:49

LOSS Kevin Mejia Castillo (Honduras), tech. fall 8-0, 0:52

WIN Eduardo Gajardo Meneses (Chile), injury default 0:00

130 kg: Tanner Farmer (New York AC), 8th place

LOSS Oscar Pino Hinds (Cuba), tech. fall 9-0

LOSS Yasmani Acosta Fernandez (Chile), 3-1

U.S. Greco-Roman draws for Friday

77 kg: RaVaughn Perkins (USOPTC/New York AC)

Jerome Hoyte (Barbados) – 9th 2017 Pan Am Championships

82 kg: Tyler Cunningham (MWC Academy)

Group B opponents

Brayden Ambo (Canada) – 6th 2020 Pan Am Championships, 2nd 2018 Canada Cup

Nestor Tafur Barrios (Colombia) – no Greco-Roman achievements, 2nd 2021 Pan Ams in freestyle

87 kg: Richard Carlson (Minnesota Storm)

Vs. Carlos Munoz Jaramillo (Colombia) – 2nd 2020 Pan Am Championships, 2016 Olympian

U.S. women’s freestyle draws for Friday

55 kg: Jacarra Winchester (USOPTC/Cowboy RTC/Titan Mercury WC)

Group A opponents

Nadia Trujillano La Rosa (Peru) – 2017 Pan Am Junior champion

Lisily Lima Da Silva (Brazil) – no information

59 kg: Xochitl Mota-Pettis (USOPTC/Rise RTC)

Round robin

Ameyali Jessel Rojas (Mexico) – no information

Laurence Beauregard (Canada) – 2019 Pan American champion, 2018 World University champion

65 kg: Forrest Molinari (Sunkist Kids)

Round robin

Saidy Chavez Figueroa (Honduras) – 3rd 2016 Cerro Pelado (Cuba)

Atzimba Landaverde Moreno (Mexico) – 1st 2018 Pan Am Junior Championships

Miki Rowbottom (Canada) – 4th 2019 Canada Cup

72 kg: Skylar Grote (Beaver Dam RTC/New York AC)

Round robin

Brenda Aguiar Dos Santos (Brazil) – 3rd in 2021 Pan Am Championships, 4th 2020 Pan Am Championships

Maria Garcia Bautista (Mexico) – 3rd 2011 Central American & Caribbean Games

Taylor Follensbee (Canada) – 2nd 2018 World University Championships