The first two days of taekwondo competition at the 2017 Summer World University Games (Universiade) finished with two medals for Team USA. On day one, Edward Jeong (University of Bridgeport) earned a silver medal in male individual poomsae, and Adalis "AJ" Munoz (Tarrant County College) earned a bronze medal. The medals were the first among all sports for Team USA at the Universiade. In this year's new format, athletes had to perform one recognized poomsae and one freestyle poomsae in the final round.
The first two days of competition will feature poomsae, or forms competition. The poomsae events will be contested according to a new format that required contestants to perform both recognized poomsae as well as freestyle poomsae in the final round. Representing Team USA in poomsae at the 2017 Summer Universiade will be Adalis "A.J." Munoz (Tarrant County College) in the Female Individual category, Edward Jeong (University of Bridgeport) in the Male Individual Category, Albert Jong (San Jose State University) and Kelsey Ha (Evergreen Valley College) in the Mixed Pair Category, Munoz, Samery Moras (Utah Valley University) and Christina Castillo (Austin Community College) in the Female Team category, and Jeong, Jong and Kody Han (University of California, Berkeley) in the Male Team category.
Our women's sparring team for the 2017 Summer Universiade will be Alondra Venegas (-46 kg, DePaul University), Jancee Ro (-49kg, Polk State University), Aziza Chambers (-53kg, Barry University), Abbey Ardiana (-57kg, Utah Valley University), Makayla Gorka (-62kg, University of Central Oklahoma), Kendall Yount (-67kg, Centre College), Madelynn Gorman-Shore (-73kg, Arapahoe Community College), and Morgan McGarvey (+73kg, Northeast Iowa Community College).
The men's sparring team at the 2017 Summer Universiade are comprised of David J. Kim (-54kg, Pikes Peak Community College), Isaac Weintraub (-58kg, University of Central Oklahoma), (-63kg, George El-Chemali (Sierra College), William Jackson (-68kg, University of Texas, Dallas), Jaysen Ishida (-74kg, University of Hawaii, Manoa), Connor Wilson (-80kg, University of California, Los Angeles), Drew Thompson (-87kg, Washington State University), and Jonathan Healy (+87kg, Liberty University).
The team leader is Wonro Lee, the male team director is Jinseob Kim, the female team director is Sanghee Kim, and the team manager is Rex Hatfield. The sparring coaches are head coach Changwon Choi, Jacky Baik, Christina Bayley and Steven Rosbarsky. The poomsae coaches are head coach Long Nguyen and Haksung Kim. The team doctor is Sherri Lashomb.
The USA referees appointed to work the event are Raymond Hsu and Jaime Schulte.
The NCTA sent a team of thirteen athletes to the Taekwondowon Park in Muju, South Korea on July 2, 2017 for a 7-day training camp. The athletes are training with members of the Korean University Sparring Team under top collegiate Korean coaches. The athletes are training every day, twice per day with their Korean counterparts. Many of the athletes are preparing for the Summer World University Games this August in Taipei, Chinese Taipei. This trip was made possible through collaboration with the Korean University Taekwondo Federation (KUTF).
Athletes on the trip include the following 2017 National Collegiate Team Members, 2017 National Collegiate Team Alternates, and 2016 National Collegiate Champions: Zachery Budde, Rae Drach, Anja Gardziola, Makayla Gorka, Amanda Gotschall, David Kim, Morgan McGarvey, Joseph Ong, Andrew "Drew" Pluemer, Blanca "Jenny" Quezada, Philip "Vincie" Ripepi, Alondra Venegas and Isaac Weintraub.
The team leader for the trip is NCTA President, Dr. Russell Ahn. The team director is Jin Kim. The coaches are Christina Bayley and Jacky Baik. The Team Doctor and Manager for the trip is Dr. Sherri Lashomb.
The NCTA would like to specially thank James Kim of Mooto USA for his generous sponsorship of the team jackets and T-shirts.
The NCTA would like to congratulate former US National Collegiate Team member Jackie Galloway on her bronze medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. She advanced over Puerto Rico and Netherlands to reach the semifinals, where she had a very close loss to Mexico. In the repechage, she scored a decisive win over France to win the bronze medal! You can see her medal-winning moment at the NBC Olympics website:
The NCTA would also like to congratulate the other USA Olympians, including former collegiate team member Stephen Lambdin, as well as Steven Lopez and Paige McPherson. The collegiate taekwondo community was cheering you on all the way and was proud of how you performed!