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Karate Canada – August 28th 2017 – Buenos Aires, Argentina – Canada’s junior national karate team is celebrating its strong showing at the 2017 Cadet & Junior Pan American Championships, held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, from August 23rd-26th, 2017. A total of 79 Junior National Team Roster athletes competed over the weekend at this major continental event bringing together 774 athletes from 25 different countries.

Canadian female kumite athletes earned a total of seven medals in Buenos Aires: In the Junior (16-17 year-old) division, Melissa Bratic (+59kg) won the gold medal, while Parvin Mayan (-59kg) earned the silver medal. In the U21(18-20 year-old) division, Lea Gordon (-68kg) also earned a silver medal, while Alexandra Zaborniak (-68kg) and Camélie Boisvenue (+68kg) both finished with bronze medals. In the Cadet (14-15 year-old) division, Yamina Lahyanssa (-47kg) placed second while Julia MacLean (-54kg) placed third. Fifth-place finishes include Melissa Chan (U21    -48kg), Natasha Lam (Junior -53kg), Emily Reglar (U14 -35kg), and Mahta Gharaei (U14 -45kg); finishing in seventh place were Olivia Savoie (U14 +45kg) and Lily-Rose Nolet (U14 +45kg). The Canadian tem also placed 5th in the U21 female team kumite event.

Male kumite athletes also performed very well, accumulating a total of six medals, including two golds, won by Maxym-Oliver Rivest (Junior +76kg) and Ethan Small (U14 +50kg). In the U21 division, Alexandre-Benjamin Rivest (+84kg) earned a silver medal, while Ryan O’Neil (-67kg) finished with a bronze medal. In the Cadet division, Jérémi Lahaie (-70kg) earned a silver medal; in the U14 (12-13 year-old) division, Gabriel Mata (-45kg) earned a bronze medal. Finishing in fifth place were Christopher Coady (U21 -84kg), Alexandre St-Arneault (U21 -84kg), Gage Madill (U14 -50kg), Michael Plunkett (Cadet -57kg), and Tyler Berretta (Cadet -70kg). In seventh place were Aryan Khaleghpanah (Junior -55kg), Jeremy Chenard (U21         -67kg), Rafael Silva (U21 -75kg), Jasmeet Minhas (U14 -40kg), Jérôme Bellemare (U14 -45kg), and Loïc Cloutier (Cadet -52kg).  Finally, in the U21 male team kumite division, the Canadian men’s team placed 5th.

In male individual kata, Nathan Yuki McNeil received a bronze medal in the U14 category; in female individual kata, both Megan Rochette (Cadet) and Amelie del Rosario (Cadet) placed 5th.

Over the course of the week, Canadian athletes earned thirteen medals as part of a total of thirty-nine top-ten finishes in both kata and kumite. Our young karate athletes now have their sights set on two major international competitive events: the WKF Junior World Championships, which will take place in Tenerife in October 2017, and the Youth Olympic Games, which will be held in Buenos Aires in October 2018.

About Karate Canada:

Karate Canada is a not-for-profit corporation constituted under Part II of the Canada Corporations Act, with the objective of describing and incorporating all activities related to the promotion, organization, regulation and popularization of the sport of karate all over Canada, of protecting the physical and emotional health of athletes, and of promoting the interests of karate throughout Canada. Karate Canada and its 11 member Provincial and Territorial Associations assemble roughly 16,000 participants nationwide. Furthermore, Karate Canada is a proud member of the Canadian Olympic Committee, the World Karate Federation and the Pan American Karate Federation.

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