OTM's Rafael Lovato, Jr. who is a current World champion and defending Pan-American champion, repeated his success today as he won the heavyweight title by defeating Robert Tussa Alencar of Gracie Barra in the finals. In what is being considered the best match of the day, the Oklahoma native swept and took the back of Alencar. The sweep (2 points) and back (4 points) guaranteed him the gold with the 6-0 victory. Congrats Lovato!
Here's a brief description of the match:
Lovato starts out by pulling guard and begins working a De La Riva guard. Alencar stands, but Lovato stays active by trying to feed the sleeve for a sweep. Instead he opts to stand with Alencar. Now Alencar decides to pull guard. Alencar catches Lovato with collar choke attempt to set-up the triangle at the 3 minute mark. Lovato is stuck inside the triangle, but is defending well at the. Lovato continues to stay calm and gets some more wiggle room. Lovato is able to roll Alencar to his side, which creates more space. Alencar is like a dog with a bone and is not letting go, trying to finish the choke by clamping down really tight on the back of Lovato's head. Now at the midway point of the match, Alencar is still trying to do everything he can to tighten the triangle. Lovato is showing the heart of a champ and continues to stay calm, while keeping pressure on Alencar. Lovato tries a step-over triangle escape to no avail. Next, Lovato tried to clear Alencar's arm, but Alencar stuff Lovato's trapped arm and shoved it over and across, appearing to have put the finishing touches on the triangle, but escapes the hold and quickly stands, which has the crowd and his team screaming. They are back on their feet with about 3 and a hlaf minutes left in this grueling 10 minute finale. Alencar earned himself 2 advantages for his near triangle effort, but no points have been awarded yet. Alencar pulls guard again and gain a third advantage for near sweep. Lovato begins looking for a guard pass, which earns him an advantage of his own. Lovato is now in Alencar's half-guard with 2 minutes left and the score is 0-0 (3 advantages to 2 for Alencar). Lovato locks in a Kimura, but Alencar rolls to defend and they both roll out of bounds. The near submission gives Lovato the equalizing advantage, as they restart on the feet in the center of the mat. There is now 45 seconds to go and Lovato jumps to guard, sweeps, and immediately takes a stunned Alencar's back to go up 6-2 at the buzzer. Rafael Lovato, Jr. is your 2008 Pan-American heavyweight champion!