U.S. Running Second to Israel After First Days of Maccabiah

American athletes are swiftly racking up gold and silver medals at the 13th Maccabiah games, which opened Monday at Ramat Gan stadium and continued during the week with events in various parts of Israel.

But in the race for medals, Israeli athletes were ahead by seven at midweek.

The U.S. contingent of 520 athletes is the largest besides Israel among the 44 countries participating in the Olympic-style competitions.

The U.S. rowing team earned two gold medals and a silver on the Sea of Galilee, led by Olympian Sherri Cassuto’s victory in the Women’s Single Sculls.

At Ramat Gan, the American wrestlers took three gold and three silver in the Greco-Roman-style finals.

The U.S. open track and field and swimming teams will compete this weekend. But the U.S. junior swimmers swam to seven medals, with 16-year-old Adam Vann claiming two gold ones for himself.

Vann, from Potomac, Md., stands 6 foot 3 and weighs 170 pounds. He promises to be a top American Olympic swimmer.

In other early-round action, the United States trounced the Colombian soccer squad 10-0. The American also routed Brazil in basketball, 107-46.

But the United States was defeated by Israel in masters basketball by a score of 112-96.

The U.S. softball squad began the defense of its title with a 7-0 one-hitter against Israel, pitched by Dave Blackburn.

In judo, two-time national champion Damon Keeve of San Francisco took top honors in the over 95 kgs. division. Pete Glikshtern placed second in the up to 86 kgs. class.

The United States won all but one of its second-round tennis matches and remained undefeated in table tennis.

After two full days of competition, Israel led the medal count with 37, including 18 medals. The United States was second with 30 medals, 10 of them gold.

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