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Canada's Ethan Katzberg strikes gold again in hammer throw at Pan American Games

SANTIAGO, Chile — Canada's Ethan Katzberg struck gold again in men's hammer throw at the Pan American Games on Saturday. The 21-year-old from Nanaimo, B.C., set a Pan Am Games record with a throw of 80.96 metres to emerge as champion.
Katie Vincent, left, and teammate Sloan MacKenzie, of Canada, react at the finish line following the C2 women’s 500m during the ICF Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe World Championships in Dartmouth, N.S. on Saturday, August 6, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese

SANTIAGO, Chile — Canada's Ethan Katzberg struck gold again in men's hammer throw at the Pan American Games on Saturday.

The 21-year-old from Nanaimo, B.C., set a Pan Am Games record with a throw of 80.96 metres to emerge as champion. Americans Daniel Haugh (77.62) and Rudy Winkler (76.65) earned silver and bronze, respectively.

The gold only adds to Katzberg's breakout 2023 campaign. He won the world title in Budapest, Hungary, in August, to become the first Canadian man to reach the podium in the event at a world championship.

“I came in and just wanted to have a good first throw. Going over 80 metres on my first throw was a good confidence booster and continuing to do that was very exciting for me,” Katzberg said Saturday. “Santiago was an amazing competition. The people here love their track and field. They were supporting everyone and that made it really special."

His Canadian record of 81.25 metres was good to defeat reigning Olympic champion Wojciech Nowicki of Poland at the world championship. Katzberg also won the national title in July in Langley, B.C.

Canada's team headed into Sunday's final day of Pan Am Games competition in Santiago, Chile with 160 medals, including 46 gold, which surpassed its tallies of four years ago in Lima, Peru.

The United States continued to dominate with 272 medals, including 116 gold. Brazil ranked second with 200 medals and 64 gold. Canada was third in total medals, but trailed Mexico's 48 gold medals.

Canada's contingent had its foot on the gas Saturday when it produced six gold, eight silver and six bronze.

Also in athletics, Canada's Jean-Simon Desgagnés earned gold Saturday in the men's 3,000 metres steeplechase with a time of eight minutes 30.14 seconds.

The 25-year-old from Saint-Ferreol-les-Neiges, Que., outdid American Daniel Michalski (8:36.47) and Colombia's Carlos San Martin (8:41.59), who earned silver and bronze, respectively.

“The crowd loves track and field. It’s insane to compete in front of these people. I’m happy with my win. Going away with a medal in my first multi-sport Games is incredible,” Desgagnes said. “I had some technical difficulties in the last 100 metres, but I pulled myself back up and getting away with a gold medal is perfect.”

Alycia Butterworth claimed silver in women's 3,000-metres steeplechase.

Meanwhile, dancer Philip Kim made history winning the first-ever Pan Am Games gold medal in men's breaking, in addition to earning an Olympic berth.

The 26-year-old from Vancouver, known as B-Boy Phil Wizard in break dancing circles, defeated Jeff (B-Boy Jeffro) Louis of the United States 3-0 in the final battle.

"It means a lot," Kim said. "This whole pathway since the beginning of this year, even last year, with the whole Olympics being introduced to breaking, it's been an incredible experience. To be a part of history for me, really means the world."

Breaking made its Pan Am Games debut in Santiago, Chile. The sport will also be an Olympic event for the first time in Paris next year.

The men's fencing squad of Francois Cauchon, Shaul Gordon and Fares Arfa captured team sabre gold with a victory over the United States. The women's epee team of Alexanne Verret, Ruien Xiao and Leonora MacKinnon took silver in a loss to Brazil.

Earlier Saturday, Canada's paddlers continued their medal haul with a gold, silver and two bronze.

Katie Vincent and Sloan MacKenzie were victorious in the women's C2 500 metres Saturday in San Pedro de la Paz, southwest of Santiago, Chile.

Canada capped the canoe and kayak competition with nine medals — four gold, two silver and three bronze — ahead of Argentina with seven medals, including two gold.

Nicholas Matveev, Pierre-Luc Poulin, Laurent Lavigne and Simon McTavish were silver medallists in the men's K4 500 metres behind Argentina.

Courtney Stott and Madeleine Schmidt took bronze in the women's K2 500. Connor Fitzpatrick was also a bronze medallist in men's C1 1,000.

Vincent of Mississauga, Ont., earned an Olympic bronze medal with Laurence Vincent Lapointe in Tokyo just over two years ago when women's canoeing was part of the Olympic program for the first time.

Also Saturday, sailor Lee Parkhill became the Pan Am champion in men's sunfish, while Sarah Douglas was a silver medallist in women's laser.

The women's rugby sevens and water polo teams won silver medals, while the men's rugby side took bronze.

Keegan Soehn and Remi Aubin were silver medallists in synchronized men's trampoline and Yamina Lahyanssa also took karate silver in the women's 50-kilogram division.

Canada's Brock Hoel, Emy Legault, Liam Donnelly and Dominka Jamnicky earned bronze in the mixed team triathlon. The women's softball team defeated Mexico 7-0 for bronze.

The men's squash team of David Baillargeon, Graeme Schnell and George Crowne were also bronze medallists.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 4, 2023.

The Canadian Press

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