Middletown native and champion judoka Kayla Harrison claimed gold in her second straight Olympic games Thursday afternoon, according to the Journal-News.
Harrison, won all four of Thursday’s four-minute matches and beat French judoka Audrey Tcheumeo by ippon (pinning) in the women’s judo 78kg weight class -- a class she also dominated in the 2012 London Olympics despite a dislocated knee that initially left her worried about whether she could compete.
This year, healthy and optimistic, she told the Journal-News that she welcomed the pressure of being a defending gold medal champion.
“As Billie Jean King says, ‘Pressure is a privilege,’ so I am looking forward to getting to Rio, being with the team and other athletes and being in the Olympic moment,” Harrison said.
Her opponents Thursday were Tcheumeo, Animari Velensek of Slovenia and Abigel Joo of Hungary. The Journal-News reported that after the win, Harrison celebrated in the stands with her family.
The Journal-News is a news partner of WCPO.