Team USA Wins Seven Medals on Day Five of Competition

Parent Category: News

September 4, 2012

LONDON – The 2012 U.S. Paralympic Team added seven more medals to its count at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, bringing its total to 47 medals. Below is a brief recap from today’s events.

Donna Ponessa (New Windsor, N.Y.)  was the lone U.S. representative on the last day of competition and closed out the 2012 Paralympic Games for the U.S. in fine style scoring 70.75% with Wesley Dunham's Western Rose to take eighth place in the individual dressage event.

The U.S. Paralympic Women’s Goalball Team fell to Canada on Tuesday when the Canadians scored with one minute remaining in regular time. The loss dropped the Americans to 2-2 in
the preliminary group D, and they will now face China on Wednesday at 9a.m. Theteam will rely on veteran Jen Armbruster (Colorado Springs, Colo.) who leads scoring for the U.S. to make it out of the preliminary rounds.

Ahmed Shafik (Tucson, Ariz.) was unable to secure a clean lift in the men’s 82.5kg. Mary Stack, (Ann Arbor, Mich.) a medal contender, will compete Wednesday in the women’s 82.5kg

Jen French (St. Petersburg, Fla.) and J.P. Creignou (St. Petersburg, Fla.) had another impressive day in the SKUD-18 event (Two Person Keelboat), and moved up to 2nd overall. In the 2.4mR (One Person Keelboat), Mark LeBlanc (New Orleans, La.), stormed back with a pair of keeper race finishes to end the day in 6th, while  Paul Callahan (Newport, R.I.),, Tom Brown (Bangor, Maine) and Bradley Johnson (Pompano Beach, Fla.) moved into podium position, 3rd, in the Sonar (Three Person Keelboat). Two races were held in the SKUD-18 and 2.4mR, with one completed in the Sonar.

Sergeant First Class Josh Olson (Spokane, Wash.), was the sole American to compete in shooting on the sixth day of competition of the 2012 Paralympic Games. Olson finished in 12th after two difficult rounds with 579 points.

Sitting Volleyball

The women are 2-0, with wins over Brazil and Slovenia, and the team will take on Ukraine at the Excel Center on Wednesday at 4p.m.

The U.S. swimming team added six more medals on Tuesday including a gold and new Paralympic record set by Justin Zook (Plymouth, Minn.). Zook recorded a time of 1:00.01 in the 100m backstroke (S10). The second gold on the men’s side was won by Lantz Lamback (Augusta, Ga.) in the 50m freestyle (S7). Tucker Dupree (Raleigh, N.C.) won bronze in the 100m freestyle (S12). The women collected three silvers on the day.Cortney Jordan (Henderson, Nev.) won silver in the 50 freestyle (S7), Jessica Long (Baltimore, Md.) won in the 100m backstroke (S8) and Victoria Arlen (Exeter, N.H) earned silver in the 50m freestyle (S6).

Track and Field

Elexis Gillette (Raleigh, N.C.) highlighted the track and field competition Tuesday winning
silver in the men’s long jump (F11). Gillette, the world record holder in the event, fell short of his personal best and finished with a leap of 6.34m just behind the winning jump of 6.46 by Urkaine’s Ruslan Katyshev.

Wheelchair Fencing
American fencers struggled on day one as Air Force veteran Mario Rodriguez (Port Hueneme,
Calif.) and Gerard Moreno (Los Angeles, Calif.) as well as Paralympic rookie, 16-year-old Catherine Bouwkamp (Fishers, Ind.), all lost their individual bouts. Still set to compete for the U.S. are Gary Van de Wege (Kyle, Texas) in the category A epee and Ryan Estep (Florence, Miss.). Estep is the top-ranked wheelchair fencer in the United States and the third-ranked wheelchair fencer in the world. The 25-year old Estep will compete in the individual category B
epee competition tomorrow and represents the Americans best chance to medal in the 2012 Games.

Wheelchair Tennis
David Wagner (Hillsboro, Ore.) beat Israeli Boaz Kramer 6-3, 6-2. Wagner is the number one
ranked player in the world and his seeking his first gold medal in the men’s quad singles division. He will take on his doubles partner and teammate Nick Taylor (Wichita, Kansas) in the semi-finals. Taylor came from behind to secure the victory 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 against Anders Hard of Sweden. Brian Barten (Tucson, Ariz.) dropped his match 0-6, 1-6 to the number two seeded player Noam Gershony. Wagner and Taylor will play in the men’s doubles final on Wednesday in hopes to defend their 2008 Paralympic gold medal.

Women’s Wheelchair Basketball

The women’s basketball team beat Canada Tuesday night, 67-55. The U.S. managed 16 points off turnovers. Desiree Miller (Whitewater, Wisc.) led the team in scoring with 26 points.

Be sure to tune-in to NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) tomorrow, Sept. 5th at 7:30 p.m., Sept. 6th
and 11th at 7 p.m. EDT for a one-hour highlight show on the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

For more information and results visit

Go Team USA!