The USA Poomsae Team opened the competition with a strong showing these first two days. Rene Chen
(Women’s Individual, Rhode Island School of Design, Medford, MA) and Long Nguyen (San Jose State
University, San Jose, CA) both advanced to the final round. The level of competition was extremely high
with many former medalists amongst the group.
Competing in the semifinal round, Chen performed pal jung and koryo to beat out many top nations to
advance. In the finals, she competed in keumgang and taebaek and showed much strength and stability
throughout both forms. All performances were very solid, and she finished the day in 7 th place overall.
This is the best result for a US female individual poomsae competitor at a world collegiate event, besting
her performance last year when she placed 8th at the Summer World University Games in Shenzhen,
Nguyen, also in the semifinal round, performed koryo and keumgang to advance to the final round
where he performed taebaek and pyongwon. This is his first year representing the US in the Men’s
Individual category and showed great tenacity and rhythm throughout his performances. He finished the
day with an impressive 8th overall position.
Day 2 of competition consisted of three events. Starting off the day was the Mixed Pairs Division
represented by Hazel Cruz (Santa Clara University, Hayward, CA) and Long Nguyen. They opened with
keumgang and taebaek in the semi-final round. This is the first time the pair has competed together at
Collegiate Worlds and their performance was very solid and showed great power and synchronization
throughout both forms. They were shy of the final round by only 0.18, placing 9 th overall.
Women’s Team, comprised of Rene Chen, Carissa Fu (Princeton University, New York, NY), and Miyako
Yerick (Columbia University, Annandale, VA), competed second. Competing with keumgang and taebaek
in the finals, they represented the US well, despite slight wobbles in keumgang. They came back with a
strong taebaek to finish the day 7th overall. The women had a very tough draw competing with a group
of multiple former world medalists.
The final event of Day 2 was the Men’s Team Division, comprised of Alvin Jong (University of California,
Davis, San Jose, CA) Long Nguyen, and Lance Supnet (Evergreen Valley College, San Jose, CA). Performing
taebaek and pyongwon in the finals, they had the best result of all events across the 2 days: they
narrowly missed the medal stand by 0.16, finishing 5th overall.
All poomsae competitors showed great determination and focus. They did an amazing job against an
experienced international crowd and are working successfully to improve the international reputation of
poomsae in the United States. The caliber of competition has increased tremendously over the past few
years. US Poomsae Team Head Coach Huy Nguyen said, “With each competition, we are continuing to
learn from the top athletes and coaches in this discipline. There is definitely room for growth, however,
we continue to hang close with the top teams and increase our level with each passing year. We had a
great year, and it’ll be even better next year.”