Two medals for Canada at Pan Am Championships; One final for Flicka’s Briannah Tsang

Kaitlyn Hofland  (East York Gymnastics) captured the gold medal on uneven bars Sunday as the Pan American Senior Apparatus Championships drew to a close.

With her first-place qualifying score in Friday’s preliminary competition, Hofland, the reigning Canadian bars champion, set herself up for a showdown in finals with Venezuelan veteran Jessica Lopez, reputed as one of the best barworkers in the world.

With gold on the line, Lopez, who finished third in the qualifying round, opted to throw a harder variation of her bar routine, upping her difficulty score by 0.4. The risk paid off with Lopez scoring 14.125, bettering her qualification score by more than a point.

But Hofland took full advantage of going up later in the final, where she dazzled with her excellent line and form — not to mention three well-performed release skills. Though her 5.8 difficulty score was slightly lower than Lopez’s, Hofland made up for it in execution, scoring 14.25 to take the gold.

Silver for Victoria Moors

Victoria Moors(Dynamo) came away with the silver medal on floor exercise on Saturday, one of two major accomplishments for the 16-year-old so far at this competition.

On her first tumbling pass, Moors also became the first woman to land a double-twisting double layout in international competition. The skill, regarded as one of the most difficult a gymnast can do on floor exercise, is still relatively new for Moors, who competed an easier variation at the Olympic Games last year.

“It was landed out of bounds, but we’re still happy about it,” affirmed Canadian women’s National Team Director Kyna Fletcher of Vancouver. “This was the main goal. She’s worked really hard for this.”

Although Moors also went out of bounds on her second pass, her score of 13.5 earned her the silver behind Brazilian veteran Daniele Hypolito (13.675), whose pretty new floor set was cleaner though not as difficult as Moors’s. Cuba’s Leidys Perdomo posted 13.25 points for the bronze.

One final for Flicka’s Briannah Tsang

Briannah Tsang (Flicka) finished eighth on floor following a fall on her double front, but recovered well throughout the rest of her routine for 12.05 points. “It was still a good strong showing,” Fletcher said.

She was alos 12th in the qualifying round on vault after a rough first attempt. Cuba’s Dovelis Torres qualified to the vault final in first place with an average of 14.325 for her two vaults, including a very well performed double-twisting Yurchenko that received 14.725. Brazil’s Leticia Costa was second (13.962), followed by Puerto Rico’s Nicolle Vazquez (13.7 average).

“Briannah narrowly missed the vault final,” Fletcher said. “She fell on her first vault, but recovered well with a strong second vault.”

World Championships preparation

After an absence of several years at this meet, the Canadians used this competition as a springboard for the World Championships, which will take place in Antwerp in October. The world team will be announced August 25, following a selection camp, Fletcher said.