SBG’s Mann Defends MMA Title Against Graves

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GREAT FALLS, MT, NOVEMBER 10, 2018 – Fusion Fight League’s Border Wars
SBG Montana’s Marnic Mann defended her title against Veronica Graves at Fusion Fight League’s Border Wars MMA event.

Mann won by a unanimous decision after 5 rounds of back-and-forth, technical fighting, retaining her belt and her title.

Graves started the fight strong with a deep arm bar attempt in the 1st round, but Mann remained composed, defended and made it to the bell. 

From there they alternated winning rounds. Mann did damage on the feet with hard punches and knees to the liver of Graves in the clinch, and crushing blows to the head when they were at distance. 

As the the rounds wore on Mann’s wrestling and body shots made the difference as she put Graves on the mat multiple times and the accumulated body attacks exhausted Graves. 

By the time they entered the 5th and final round, Mann and Graves had won 2 rounds each. Mann immediately opened the round with hard punching and a take down, only to be reversed a short time later, ending up on the bottom. 

Mann maintained her calm, did damage with up kicks and punches from the bottom, took no damage and eventually worked her way back to the feet. The judges awarded Mann a close but unanimous decision to retain her belt. 

Coach Daniel Di Stefano of SBG Whitefish commented, “Mann worked hard in training camp and it showed. She was fresh throughout all 5 rounds, neutralized her opponent’s offense, and maintained composure when she was in trouble.”

Di Stefano continued, “Her mental toughness combined with excellent conditioning allowed her to keep coming down the stretch. She’s a special athlete with a bright future, I can’t wait to see what she accomplishes next.”

SBG Montana’s Gage Morsette fought on the same card and moved to 3-0 as he displayed a dominant grappling game against explosively athletic striker Louie Lopez. Despite Lopez’s attempts to keep the fight standing, Morsette was relentless in his pursuit of take downs that Lopez simply could not stop. 

Morsette displayed an arsenal of trips, double legs, and upper body throws, at one point hoisting Lopez above his head, carrying him across the cage and slamming him to the ground. Morsette’s positional dominance led to punishing ground and pound resulting in a TKO in the second round.

Di Stefano shared, “Gage has all the potential in the world, this dominant display is just a preview of what he is capable of. This fight tested him, but his calm unruffled cage demeanor and solid grappling will be hard for any opponent to deal with.”

For more information about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo, Yoga, Fitness, and Kids Programs, call 406-752-7244, email at info@sbgmontana.com, or visit the website at http://www.sbgmontana.com.

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SBG Celebrates Wins, 10 year Legacy at Revolution

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TACOMA, WA, NOVEMBER 3RD & 4TH, 2018 – Revolution XXXVIII BJJ Tournament

As SBG Montana celebrates it’s 10th anniversary, the years of competing at tournaments across the northwest paid off at this weekend’s Revolution BJJ tournament in Tacoma, WA.

Sixteen athletes brought home a total of 23 medals in the youth and adult divisions: 7 gold, 9 silver, and 7 bronze.

Head Coach Cody Bessette of SBG Bigfork took gold in No Gi and was named Top Ranked Athlete for 2018 in his division. Colton Wieczorek (15 yrs) took double silver in the Men’s White Belt Gi and No Gi divisions. Lakoda Wieczorek (13 yrs) took double gold in the Youth Yellow Belt Gi and No Gi divisions. Isabella Downing (11 yrs) took Silver in Gi and Gold in No Gi in the Youth Yellow Belt Divisions.

Tournaments are the way in which SBG Athletes can test their jiu jitsu skills. Competition offers a unique learning environment that, win or lose, takes an athlete’s training to the next level.

Bessette shared, “The Revolution Tournament was another phenomenal experience and a well-run tournament where we were able to put our skills to the test and learn so much more about ourselves than we ever thought possible. As a competitor I have always found it a wonderful eye opener to realize the depth of the art that is BJJ.”

More valuable than the medals are the life lessons that athletes learn from the experience. Downing’s mother, Kristin Downing, shared how competition has enriched her daughter’s personal development.

“In the three years she has been competing, traveling and tournaments has shaped her into a better athlete. She has learned patience, how to lose, how to work hard for her end goal, and that she will not always leave with a medal.”

SBG’s supportive training environment and knowledgable coaches gave Downing the space to learn those lessons. “Bella’s coaches have taken time to work with her when she needs extra time and skill lessons for upcoming tournaments. They have been very supportive for all of the competitions she attends, not matter the distance.”

Wieczorek is part of a family of 7 that has been training with SBG for four years. This was his first time competing in the adult divisions. His experience in BJJ tournaments gave him the skills to overcome obstacles beyond SBG.

His mother, Angela Wieczorek, commented, “We have competed in almost 25+ tournaments since starting at the gym. No matter the outcome of each competition we always walk away with new lessons, new experiences, and new growth as individuals.”

Ms. Wieczorek is one of dozens of adult athletes at SBG who train alongside her children. Competition offers her the same outlet for personal growth that it does her children.

“Competition makes you face your fears and step out of your comfort zone,” she shared. “How do you know how you will react in a real life defense situation if you don’t force yourself to react under pressure in a controlled environment?”

For more information about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo, Yoga, Fitness, and Kids Programs, call 406-752-7244, email at info@sbgmontana.com, or visit the website at http://www.sbgmontana.com.

Team Results:

YOUTH

  • Aiden Shaver (Kalispell) – Gi, Bronze
  • Bryn Anderson (Kalispell) – Gi, Bronze – No Gi, Bronze
  • Cayden Wieczorek (Kalispell) – Gi, Bronze – No Gi, Silver
  • Fisher Sliter (Whitefish) – Gi, Silver
  • Isabella Downing (Whitefish) – Gi, Silver – No Gi, Gold
  • Kalijah Wieczorek (Kalispell) – Gi, Silver – No Gi, Gol
  • Keara Wieczorek (Kalispell) – Gi, Bronze
  • Lakoda Wieczorek (Kalispell) – Gi, Gold – No Gi, Gold
  • Lex Bessette (Kalispell) – Gi, Bronze – No Gi, Silver
  • Nevi Bessette (Kalispell) – Gi, Gold

ADULT

  • Cody Bessette (Bigfork) – No Gi, Gold
  • Colton Wieczorek (Kalispell) – Gi, Silver – No Gi, Silver
  • Meral Jobes (Kalispell) – Gi, Bronze – No Gi, Silver
  • Sarah Garcia (Kalispell) – Gi, Silver – No Gi, Bronze

 

SBG’s 1st Female MMA Athlete Wins Fusion Title

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KALISPELL, MT, OCTOBER 2, 2018 – Fusion Fight Night, Billings, MT

Straight Blast Gym’s Marnic Mann won the Fusion Fight League Title in an MMA bout on Saturday, September 29th in Billings, MT.

She was declared the winner by TKO and the new champion in the Women’s 115 lb division.

Mann fought against Ireland Moran of Billings. Mann dropped Moran with a straight left hand to start the first round and finished the round on top in the guard.

The second round saw two exchange punches and kicks before clinching up. Mann managed to mount Moran off a failed takedown attempt and ultimately won the fight with strikes from the mount.

Mann said of her performance, “ I trained so hard, put my mind where it needed to be, stayed relaxed, and got it done.”

Head Coach Travis Davison commented, “She was 3-0 going into the fight but none of her previous fights were against opponents with Ireland’s experience or with title implications. The fight was in Moran’s hometown of Billings and the crowd was overwhelming in her favor. Despite all this Marnic kept her composure and fought a near perfect fight.”

Davison is excited to see where Mann takes her MMA career from here.

“She is now 4-0 with her first title defense scheduled for November 10th in Great Falls, MT. SBG’s Marnic Mann has a bright future and is definitely one to watch.”

For more information about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo, Yoga, Fitness, and Kids Programs, call 406-752-7244.

For SBG Athletes, Confidence in Competition Expands at Oregon Open

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HILLSBORO, OR, SEPTEMBER 8, 2018 – Oregon Open Jiu Jitsu Championship

Students from Straight Blast Gym traveled to the Oregon Open Jiu Jitsu Championship in Hillsboro, Oregon on Saturday, September 8th.

SBG Whitefish’s Isabella Downing won gold in both the Gi and No Gi divisions. SBG Kalispell’s Bryn Anderson won bronze in the beginner No Gi division.

Head Coach Travis Davison commented, “Bryn Andersen and Bella Downing are a joy to coach and both performed well. Bryn earned a bronze medal and Bella had a flawless performance earning double gold.”

The tournament is the largest jiu jitsu tournament in Oregon and a valuable opportunity for competitors to experience International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation rules, an organization that hosts some of the largest BJJ tournaments in the world.

Both Downing and Anderson have previous experience competing in the Oregon Open. Traveling to tournaments in the northwest, California, and Nevada has been formative experiences in the athletic and personal development of these young athletes.

“Attending tournaments away from home helps these children gain confidence and also forges friendships with fellow teammates,” said Kristin Downing, Isabella’s mother. “My child is very lucky to have these opportunities provided by SBG as well as by [Head Coaches] Travis and Kisa [Davison].”

Tournaments offer a unique opportunity for SBG’s young athletes to gain confidence by performing in front of a large crowd in an unfamiliar environment.

Davison added, “Both of these kids handle pressure well and continue to gain confidence with each passing tournament.”

For more information about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo, Yoga, Fitness, and Kids Programs, call 406-752-7244.

Team Results:

Isabella Downing (SBG Whitefish)
Youth Gi – Yellow – Gold
Youth NoGi – Intermediate – Gold

Bryn Anderson (SBG Kalispell)
Youth Gi – Grey – No placement
Youth NoGi – Beginner – Bronze

SBG’s Davison Takes Silver at Judo US Open

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FORT LAUDERDALE, FL, July 27th & 28th, 2018 – 2018 US Open Judo Championships

SBG Montana’s Stella Davison competed in the 2018 US Open Judo Championships held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on Friday, July 27th & Saturday, July 28th.

For Davison, this was a tournament of firsts: first time at the US Open International; first time competing as a brown belt; and first time competing in a higher weight class. Davison won silver in her division, competing against the top US athletes in Judo.

Head Coach Sean Saadi said of the event, “This event included over 800 competitors representing 23 different countries. It was a great event for Stella on many levels and getting a Silver medal here is impressive. We tested the waters in a higher weight division against unfamiliar competitors.”

Davison said of the experience, “This competition brought a set of different challenges. There were a number of obstacles in my path to the podium, and I did everything in my power to hurdle them! I didn’t come home with the gold that I had been a striving for, but any place on the podium at this high level of competition is nothing to be ashamed of. When I look at my medal I see proof of all of hours I spent on the mats, the drops of sweat and tears that slide down my cheeks.”

Davison will finish the 2018 season at the upcoming President’s Cup in November and then start planning and preparing for the 2019 season.

Straight Blast Gym of Montana’s Stella Davison is one step closer to making the USA Olympic Judo Team

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KENT, WA, FEBRUARY 17, 2018 – Washington State Judo Championships

Straight Blast Gym of Montana’s Stella Davison is one step closer to making the USA Olympic Judo Team.

Davison placed 1st in the International Judo Federation Junior Division at the Washington State Judo Championships.

The 16-year-old athlete and green belt in Judo is reaching for the USA Olympic Judo team. The tournament in Washington is one of many that Davison will compete in this year to rise to the level of Olympic athlete.

Davison said of the experience, “What a great way to start this year’s competitions, and this is only the beginning. I’m looking forward to many more successful tournaments. I will continue to train hard and make the improvements needed to be the best! As always, thank you so much to everyone who continues to support me and goals.”

Davison trains with SBG’s Coach Sean Saadi, a black belt in Judo. Saadi said of the results, “We’ve been preparing since July last year for the 2018 season. Becoming the WA State Champion was a good warm-up to the 7 national tournaments we have planned for 2018. Stella is poised to make Team USA and start climbing the international ranking ladder very soon.”

Davison will leave March 2nd for Pennsylvania, where she will try to earn a spot on the national team.

For more information about Martial Art, Kids Programs, Yoga, and Fitness call 406-752-7244, email at info@sbgmontana.com, or visit the website at http://www.sbgmontana.com.

SBG Bigfork, Whitefish Athletes Medal At Regional Tournament

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Spokane, WA, January 6, 2018 – Northwest Open Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Tournament

SBG Bigfork’s Will Allen and Head Coach Cody Bessette medaled in the Northwest Open Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Tournament in Spokane, WA on Saturday, January 6th. This marks SBG Bigfork’s second tournament since opening its doors in September.

Allen won two gold medals in Masters 1 White Belt Gi and No Gi Novice. He shared of the experience:

“This moment in my journey is one that I will never forget. It is inspiring to be led by Coach Cody. Without a doubt all of the successes garnished this past weekend are a direct result of his mentoring, teaching and coaching.”

Competitors from SBG Whitefish also participated in the event: Paul Downing, Bella Downing, and Tanner Downing. Bessette took the opportunity to coach these competitors while at the event.

Head Coach Cody Bessette shared:

“It was an honor to coach such wonderful people. The humility our tribe displayed was world-class. To have SBG North (Whitefish) and SBG Bigfork come together and represent the organization truly exemplifies what tribe is all about. I couldn’t be more proud to be a part of this experience with each one of our competitors. This is SBG, you will be okay!”

For more information about Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Judo, Yoga, and Fitness call (406) 420-2888, email at info@sbgbigfork.com, or visit the website at http://www.sbgmontana.com.

Team Results

  • Will Allen- Two gold medals – Masters 1 (30+) White Belt Gi, and No Gi Novice 186-205 lbs.
  • Cody Bessette – Two silver medals – Adult Purple Belt Gi and expert No Gi 186-205 lbs.
  • Paul Downing – Silver in No Gi – Masters 1 (30+) White Belt Gi, and No Gi novice 166-185 lbs.
  • Bella Downing – Two gold medals – Girls’ Grey Belt Gi and No Gi Intermediate 67-76 lbs.
  • Tanner Downing – Two bronze medals – Boys’ Grey Belt Gi and No Gi Beginner 67-76 lbs