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

 

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.

PRESS RELEASE: For SBG Elite Athletes, IBJJF A Tournament Of Successful Firsts

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LAS VEGAS, NV, AUGUST, 26, 2017 – IBJJF Masters World Tournament

On the day he cornered UFC Fighter Conor McGregor in the biggest fight in sports history, SBG Ireland’s Coach John Kavanagh made the time for SBG athletes from around the world, who competed in the IBJJF Masters World Competition

Kavanagh, who is known for coaching McGregor in his successful fighting career, came out to support 27 of the international Brazilian Jiu Jitsu organization’s elite athletes on the world stage in Las Vegas from August 24th – August 26th.

Like Kavanagh several of the competitors are head coaches at their home gyms, balancing time between teaching and training.

And they made an impressive showing. Of those who competed, eleven medaled in their division, including Amanda Loewen of SBG Portland, who also took home bronze in the Absolute Weight Class Division.

The tournament was a momentous occasion for Straight Blast Gym, which celebrates its 25th anniversary since the founding of the international organization.

SBG Montana’s Coach Leah Taylor not only won gold in her division but also received a sponsorship from Fuji Sports.

Taylor said of the experience, “I won my first Masters black belt world championship and had two matches and finished both by submission. We were in Las Vegas the weekend that Conor McGregor of SBG Ireland made history by going 10 rounds with the best boxer in the world. It was an incredible experience and an epic weekend for our international teammates. Viva SBG!”

Many of the coaches have been training and growing with each other for several years and attribute their success to these trusted friendships.

SBG Elko Head Coach Chris Myers stated, “This was definitely the most successful day of competition ever for Straight Blast Gym International. Three new world champions were crowned. The support I felt from my team allowed me to relax and represent them and myself to the best of my ability. It does take a group effort to have success at these high levels and this group doesn’t plan on letting up any time soon.”

SBG Montana owner and mother of four, Kisa Davison, knows the challenges of training while raising a family and running a business. The purple belt regularly travels to tournaments to coach her students, but this time she attended the tournament to compete for herself, winning Bronze in her division.

Davison said of the experience, “I feel fortunate that there are women who are my age, weight, and belt level who also decided to take the plunge and for me to take the fight. It’s not easy for athletes with a full-time job and a family to care for to prioritize training, much less to travel to a competition on the international stage to test your skills, and I know personally what it takes to do that.”

GOLD

Amanda Loewen – Black / Master 1 / Female / Middle

Leah Roseanne Taylor – Black / Master 1 / Female / Medium-Heavy

Eryk Anders – Purple / Master 1 / Male / Super-Heavy

SILVER

Kasey Botelho – Purple / Master 2 / Female / Light

BRONZE

John Mark Frankl – Black / Master 4 / Male / Light

Amanda Loewen – Black / Master 1 / Female / Open Class

Anick Bernier – Brown / Master 1 / Female / Feather

Chris Myers – Brown / Master 2 / Male / Light

Kisa Marie Davison – Purple / Master 3 / Female / Feather

Jon Hobson – Purple / Master 6 / Male / Middle

Harry Eugene Bramel III – Purple / Master 5 / Male / Light

For more information about Martial Arts, Yoga, and Fitness, contact Straight Blast Gym at 406-752-7244, by email at info@sbgmontana.com, or by web.

SBG Judo’s Stella Davison Charges USA Junior Olympic Nationals

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SPOKANE, WA – 2017 USA Junior Olympic National Championships

Straight Blast Gym of Montana’s Stella Davison competed in the 2017 USA Junior Olympic National Championships for the first time, displaying her skill and training at this highly competitive event.

Davison, age 15, spent three days rigorously competing in the competition’s events, which included: the USA Junior Olympic National Championships Cadets; the International Judo Federation World Team USA Trials, and the International Junior Olympics in both Cadet and Junior Divisions.

She won two bronze medals in the International IJF Junior and Cadet Olympics after a total of 13 matches over the course of 3 days. Her competitors were the country’s most experienced brown belts and ranked top in the Junior Black Belt divisions.

Head Judo Coach Sean Saadi said:

“It’s like a dream in some ways, especially for a coach. People should understand that Stella at 15 has only been training Judo since November 2014. Since her first tournament in May 2015 she has competed in close to 7 tournaments including this one. Her competitors have many years of training and tournaments under their belts. Now in addition to two silver medals at Senior Nationals in April, she’s a two-division bronze medalist at the Junior Olympics. I can’t wait to see what she’ll do in the next two years!”

Davison said of the experience:

“Over three days I competed in the USA Judo National & International Judo Olympics. I was in four divisions and had 13 matches! Overall, I’m happy with my performance.”

For more information about Martial Arts, Yoga, and Fitness, contact Kisa Davison at 406-752-7244, by email at info@sbgmontana.com, or by web at http://www.sbgmontana.com.