The black belt absolute division of the 2017 Pan kicked off this Saturday. To define the finalists that will fight for the gold this Sunday, men and women went at it on the mats assembled in Irvine, Calif.
After all was said and done, the men’s final had been shaped to pit Leandro Lo (Brotherhood), against João Gabriel Rocha (Soulfighters).
To secure his spot in the final, Lo beat Lucas Rocha, Dany Gerard and Nicholas Meregali — the latter of which had beaten Otávio Nalati, Mahamed Aly and Alexander Trans. A semifinal match saw Lo pass Meregali’s guard.
Meanwhile, João Gabriel got through Admilson Gobi and Lucas Lepri before meeting Erberth Santos in a semifinal. Santos, who had beaten Raphael Souza, Matheus Diniz and Ricardo Evangelista, was leading after scoring four points, but João Gabriel managed to react and score 12 points — and then sank a kata-gatame.