SBG’s Mann Defends MMA Title Against Graves

Standard

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.

Advertisements

SBG Celebrates Wins, 10 year Legacy at Revolution

Standard

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

 

For SBG Athletes, Confidence in Competition Expands at Oregon Open

Standard

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

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

Standard

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.

PRESS RELEASE: SBG Montana Promotes New Black Belt To It’s Ranks

Standard

KALISPELL, MT, December 29, 2017 –
SBG MONTANA BLACK BELT PROMOTION

Ryan Asay became SBG Montana’s newest black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu on Friday, December 29th. Approximately 50 members of the martial arts school attended this special event.

Asay’s promotion to black belt marked a particularly special milestone for the BJJ school. Asay was one of the gym’s very first students when it opened in 2008.

Head Coach Travis Davison shared Asay’s rise from the school’s first white belt student to 2nd homegrown black belt.

“Nine years ago when Kisa [Davison] and I were out of work and collecting unemployment we hatched a plan to start SBG Montana. I had been teaching a handful of guys Jiu Jitsu in my garage and at another person’s dojo and decided to pitch my idea to them at Moose’s Saloon. Ryan and Zach [Dickson] were there and opted to write checks for a year’s membership upfront. That money helped to open our first location and Ryan became a fixture on our mat.”

For Asay, that initial investment was “money well spent”. He shared:

“Little did I know that years later this small investment would improve my life exponentially and surround me with amazing men and women who push me and make me want to be better everyday.”

Asay’s journey is on of many stories of transformation that comes out of SBG Montana. For him, as well as many others, SBG is not only provides a physical activity but vastly improves his quality of life.

“Jiu Jitsu is powerful but without people it’s impossible, and the community at SBG deserves much of the credit for my accomplishments today and in the future. I cringe a little bit when I think of the path my life might have continued if I hadn’t made the right choice 9 years ago.”

Davison also shared the positive changes training made in Asay’s life, saying:

“He was a 19 year old kid when I met him and to say he was quiet and shy would be an understatement. I couldn’t be prouder of the man he has become or happier about his success and accomplishments.”

For belt promotions, SBG International celebrates with a tradition unique to the organization, which they call an “Ironman”. A student rolls with each and every teammate who attends the event, which can range anywhere from 40-50 people. The event culminates when the student rolls with their coach, who then awards them their new belt.

In addition to Coach Davison, Asay joins two other black belts from SBG Montana’s team: Coach Leah Taylor, who received her black belt from SBG President Matt Thornton and Coach Gus Nolte, SBG Montana’s first black belt. Nolte is now the Head Coach at SBG Missoula, which opened in November.

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

PRESS RELEASE: SBG Athlete Opening Bigfork’s First Martial Arts School

Standard

Bigfork, MT, AUGUST 15, 2017

Bigfork is about to see it’s first ever martial arts school.

Town locals Cody and his wife Mya Bessette are opening up the newest facility of Straight Blast Gym, which specializes in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for kids and adults.

For now, SBG Bigfork will only offer kids martial arts, but that is a major development for a town with limited options for after school programs for youth.

Cody and Mya are hoping this new martial arts school will make it easier for families who are already stretched to their limit commuting to Kalispell to keep their kids in sports and other extracurricular activities. Those who are unable to make the drive due to work schedules miss out on valuable opportunities for their kids.

The Bessettes would know those challenges facing Bigfork families. With two children of their own, Nevi (8) and Lex (6), Cody and Mya have spent a lot of time driving them into Kalispell to participate in SBG Montana’s Growing Gorillas program.

They decided to start SBG Bigfork after witnessing the profound growth that their children experienced in Kalispell’s Growing Gorillas program.

Cody discovered BJJ over three years ago, and it was a life-changing event for him. He joined SBG Montana, where he trained with Head Coach Travis Davison. He has since received a belt promotion, medaled in national tournaments, and received his coaching certification through SBG’s Coaches Course. Having personally experienced the transformative powers of BJJ, Cody was eager to get his children involved as well.

As a Montana native raised in the Flathead Valley, Cody wanted to pay it forward and extend those life-altering benefits to the Bigfork community.

Growing Gorillas is unique in that it is more than a martial arts program. Designed by Davison and his wife Kisa, the program’s primary objective is teaching children life skills that will help them be successful at school, in the home, and in relationships.

The curriculum combines drilling and play-based instruction to build motor skills and physical awareness. Students also complete monthly homework assignments to skills like courage, respect, perseverance, and kindness, which help them build strong relationships.

SBG Athletes Medal at IBJJF World Competition

Standard

WALTER PYRAMID, LONG BEACH, CA, JUNE 1ST-4TH, 2017 – International Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Federation’s World Championship

Straight Blast Gym athletes and coaches traveled to Long Beach, CA to compete with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitors from around the world in the IBJJF’s international tournament.

Leah Taylor took the bronze medal in Women’s Black Belt Medium Heavy Weight. Coach Travis Davison shared, “Coach Leah Taylor led from the front on Jiu Jitsu’s biggest stage. SBG Montana is lucky to have one of the world’s best female black belts as a coach. She placed 3rd in the world at her weight and lost to last year’s champion. I couldn’t be prouder of her performance.”

Ricky Davison competed in the Juvenile 1 Male Blue Belt Featherweight Division, and Stella Davison competed in the Juvenile 1 Female Blue Belt Lightweight Division, taking bronze. This was the first year competing in the tournament for the “wonder twins”, who have trained in SBG’s programs since it first opened in 2008.

Coach Davison said of the experience:

“This year marked the 10th in a row that I’ve attended the World Championships, either as a competitor or a coach. What makes this year unique is that two of my kids competed for the first time. Stella and Ricky Davison were 5 years old the first time I competed at the Walter Pyramid in Long Beach. They are 17 years younger than I was and are a whole lot more skilled. They joined SBG competitors from all over the World this weekend.”