INDIANAPOLIS, AUG. 11 -- Eight Dominican athletes, all members of the armed forces, were missing from the Pan American Games' athletes village today, and the head of that nation's delegation called them "traitors."
Four weightlifters, two wrestlers and two cyclists are missing, according to Bienvenido Solano, the chief of the Dominican Republic team.
Solano said the eight would be "sanctioned for life" and would be considered "traitors, because they didn't even have the honor of defending the flag, which they pledged in Santo Domingo."
Meanwhile, the United States won four gold medals in five swimming events, falling short of a sweep because Costa Rica's Silvia Poll won the 100-meter backstroke.
The U.S. also enjoyed a good night at the ballpark, as the Americans routed Venezuela, 14-7, in a game that nearly saw a brawl. The U.S. was leading, 3-0, before getting three homers in the fourth inning off Venezuelan pitcher Ery Serrano to make it 8-0.
Manager Pedro Avila brought in Jesus Lopez to relieve, and Lopez's first pitch sailed near the head of U.S. batter Mike Fiori. Players and coaches from both teams ran out of the dugout shouting and pointing. But all four umpires restored order before a brawl could break out.
The energy at the natatorium was channeled a bit better.
Mike O'Brien, the USC senior and 1984 Olympic gold medalist in the 1,500 meters, won the gold in the 200-meter backstroke.
Former North Carolina State star Todd Dudley won the gold in the 100-meter freestyle, narrowly edging Scott McCadam, formerly of Iowa State.
The U.S. also placed one-two in the 400-meter freestyle, with Julie Martin, a 17-year-old high school senior from California, taking the gold and the University of Virginia's Barb Metz winning the silver.
The U.S. women won the 4x100-meter freestyle relay, easily beating Canada and Costa Rica. Poll, with that bronze, got her fifth medal of these Games in just three days of competition. Her winning time of 1:02.18 in the backstroke was a Pan Am mark.
There was no American dominance in weightlifting. In fact, Cuban-trained lifters won the gold, silver and bronze medals in all three catagories -- snatch, clean-and-jerk and overall -- in the middleweight (165 pounds) division. Roberto Urrutia, a U.S. citizen who defected from Cuba in 1980, captured all three bronze medals.