Medals galore at US Open World Martial Arts Champs
Jamaica started their medal charge at the International Sports Karate Association's US Open World Martial Arts Championships on Friday, blazing to 30 medals - 14 gold, eight silver and eight bronze - after two days of action at the Coronado Resort in Orlando, Florida.
Continuous-sparring gold medals were won late Friday evening by Olympian Kenneth Edwards, 18-year-old Joshane Thompson of the High Potential junior combined team squad, and Jamaica's top female fighters, Subrina Richards and Sheckema Cunningham.
Other High Potential Squad members winning gold in continuous sparring were Kingston Taekwon-Do's Tye McKay and First Zendo's Tyrique Tai-Loy, both from Calabar High.
Kingston Taekwon-Do's Miguel Hamilton of St George's College, runner-up to Calabar in the McKay Security Jamaica Taekwon-Do High School League, also won gold in sparring.
Karate schools Rising Sun and Ningen were particularly impressive as their students shone in weapons, musical and creative forms.
Rising Sun's Khain Henry won four gold medals - creative weapons, traditional weapons, creative forms and continuous sparring - in the five-year-old and under division.
Kyoshi Heather Campbell's Rising Sun also picked up medals in seven-and-under as Lee-Michael Henry won gold in creative weapons and two silver for creative forms and continuous sparring, plus a bronze in traditional weapons.
Russell English won silver in 10-11 advanced creative weapons and a bronze in continuous sparring in one of the smallest-ever Rising Sun contingents at the Open.
Keith Edwards' Ningen Karate's Jordan Scott won gold in musical weapons and added three bronze - continuous sparring, creative weapons and traditional weapons - to his count in the six-to-seven category.
The Jamaicans are going all out to surpass the 88 medals won last year - 33 gold, 22 silver and 33 bronze. They close the weekend by competing in clash and points sparring, plus last night's ESPN3-televised Night of Champions, featuring Ackeem Lawrence taking on Canada's Max Max Bujold.