Today at the USA Games – June 6
Thompson Thrills at Coronado Springs to Close Day 1
Torrey Thompson of Rockport provided the biggest thrills of the day as the last Team Kentucky athlete in action with two matches at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Thompson had to wait until nearly 4 pm to take the court for the first time and struggled early to find his rhythm, falling behind 9-0 to Nebraska’s Jeffrey Wrich. But Thompson held strong and clawed all the way back to tie the match at 9-9 to force a one-round overtime. While he played the round well, Wrich narrowly edged Thompson’s best shot to claim 10-9 win. Thompson remained hot in his second match, dominating throughout against Joshua Dalie of Alaska. Thompson opened an 8-0 lead of his own and cruised to a 10-6 win. The 19 total points kept Thompson in contention for the gold medal match pending other results from his division.
The first day of USA Games competition also opened with a thriller in the flag football competition at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex. Team Kentucky – made up of athletes from Marshall County – trailed Team Maryland 13-12 at halftime and looked in danger of falling two touchdowns behind in the second half, but great defensive plays on 3rd and 4th down – including a blocked pass by Ryan Morrison on 4th down – held for Team Kentucky. With under a minute to go, Kentucky scored to pull back within two, but the 2-point conversion was unsuccessful and Kentucky dropped its opened 26-24.
Athlete Cory Pitsenberger scored the first Unified USA Games point in Team Kentucky history on a free throw in the first quarter as as our University of Louisville-based Intercollegiate Unified basketball team took the court for the first time. Team Kentucky played a solid second half but fell to a really good North Carolina team, 53-31. Team Kentucky will face northern neighbor Ohio tomorrow at 9:15 am. Team Kentucky may be shorthanded tomorrow as both Pitsenberger and Unified partner Eric Piernas rolled their ankles and may not be available.
Three Kentucky track and field athletes saw their first action in preliminaries this morning. Hawesville’s Kevin Rates was the first to compete, jumping 3.95 meters for his best jump on his third and final try. Trevor Yates of Shepherdsville ran his heat of the 1500-meter prelim in 6:05.18. Caitlin Roy of Finchville closed Team Kentucky’s day on the track by clocking a 1:52.55.
Before Thompson’s big evening bocce run, Amy Butler of Almo and Kym Dickamore of Murray had their first bocce matches. Butler took an early lead in her singles match against Washington’s Jacquelyn Diaz, but then Diaz got hot, beating Butler 10-5.
Dickamore took Gail Jarest of New Hampshire to sudden death overtime before losing 5-4. In her later match, Dickamore ran into a buzzsaw in Jennifer Niehouse of Missouri, falling 9-3.
In other preliminary action, all four Kentucky bowlers got their first look at Boardwalk Bowl today for their preliminary round. Dallas Derringer of Louisville had a big day, bowling a 454 three-game series that included a high game of 181. Franklin’s Casey Freeman also exceeded her average today with a 318 series that included a 121. Levi Oney of Olive Hill posted a 253 with a high game of 99. And Glasgow’s Brianna Goode rolled a 141 series.
This morning also saw a thrill of another kind as gymnast Lee Dockins of Russellville was one of several USA Games athletes featured on Good Morning America. Dockins performed moves from her USA Games floor routine and had the chance to meet the GMA Hosts and several Disney characters.
Tomorrow at the USA Games
Competition ramps up in a big way tomorrow as nearly every Kentucky athlete will see competition, many with chances to claim their first medals of the Games.
Kentucky’s four bowlers will all be competing in the singles event at Boardwalk Bowl.
At the track, Yates and Roy will have finals in the 1500 meters and 400 meters, respectively. Rates will move from the long jump pit to the shot put for his prelim in that event. Michaela Hickerson – Team Kentucky’s youngest athlete – will hit the track for the first time in the 100 meter prelim.
The Unified basketball team returns to action tomorrow against Ohio.
Flag football will hit the field against the District of Columbia.
Kentucky’s golfers return to their courses for Round 2.
All three bocce athletes will close out their singles event.
All three gymnasts will start their competition tomorrow. Dockins and Racheal Connor of Versailles will compete at 9 and Lexington’s Aliya White follows at 1.
At the pool, Lexington’s Megan McCormick will have the busiest day of any Kentucky athlete. She’ll swim the 200-yard freestyle and the 100-yard butterfly and follow that up with her leg in the 4×50-yard medley relay. Justin Hale of Crestwood will also swim the 200-yard freestyle and a leg of the 4×50 medley relay. Austin Stine of Louisville will also swim a leg of the relay, as will Union’s Madelyn Brinkman.