Whitehorse Daily Star

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GREAT GRAPPLERS – Eight Days Martial Arts adult athletes and coaches pose for a pic at an AVA event in Port Coquitlam Feb. 4. Left to right: Dave Pompeo, Demie Leduc, Robert Woodman, James Minifie, Andrey Skofenko, Steve Kragt. Missing: Nathan Cross. The adults brought home seven medals.

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JUNIOR JIU JITSU – Coach Robert Woodman poses with the young athletes, who brought home three medals from the AVA event in Port Coquitlam. Left to right: Finlay Vince, Woodman, Christopher Wood, Finn Knight, Nate Kulachkosky.

Eight Days mines multiple medals at B.C. tourney

Eight Days Martial Arts of Whitehorse came home with a multitude of medals recently.

By Whitehorse Star on March 15, 2023

Eight Days Martial Arts of Whitehorse came home with a multitude of medals recently.

The club had nine athletes, including five adults and four children, competing in an AVA (All versus All) jiu jitsu tournament in Port Coquitlam, B.C.

The tourney took place Feb. 4-5.

The adults competed Saturday and the kids divisions went at it on Sunday.

The adults competed in Gi and Nogi divisions in multiple belt and weight classes.

The kids all competed in Gi in multiple belt and weight classes.

“It went extremely well,” said Eight Days Head Coach Robert Woodman.

“It was the first time that I went to this tournament and didn’t participate. I was just a coach this time.

Just to be on that side was different but it was pretty nice. I got to give everybody my attention.

“Everybody did really well. They fought hard and we got a lot of good submissions and you know, raised some eyebrows.”

Regarding not competing this time, Woodman said he “felt the nerves. I wanted to get in there and mix it up. I always feel weird when I sit out. But I wanted to give them my full attention … I was running around from mat to mat and I lost my voice on both days. It’s all worth it.”

Woodman said there were some memorable moments during the tournament, including Demie Leduc’s success.

“She ended up getting the submission when the girl had her in a mount position, which is traditionally a bad position. But she had a cross collar choke and ended up finishing it from the bottom so that was pretty unexpected, but it was definitely one of the highlights.

“There were a few leg locks, also from a bad position, because if the match is a draw, at the end of regulation time, they go into an overtime round where the other person gets their back. If the person crosses their legs, they’re able to get a submission from there. We ended up getting three of those.

“We got a bunch of submissions from bad positions.”

As for what the athletes thought of the competition, Woodman said, “They loved it. Even the kids. We had four kids come down with us. And three of them, it was their first time but they had a lot of fun. Three out of the four kids got medals, and even the one that didn’t win, Finn Knight, it was his first tournament, and he had five matches. He didn’t know what to expect but he fought like a warrior. Did awesome.

“Just didn’t get the medals, but that’s okay. It’s more about experience for their first time. It’s definitely something he wants to do again.”

Woodman wanted to say “Overall, just how proud I am of all of them.

“Being there, just from the coaching side, definitely gave me a different perspective on things that I need to work on as a coach and work on my coaching style and you know how I’m giving instruction and stuff like that and just hoping to keep competing, hopefully get a bigger crew. We seem to be taking more and more people as we go, which is a great thing. Just excited for the future.”

Next up for the club is getting back to the training. They also have a tournament coming up in May in Victoria. Woodman is currently gauging the interest from his club in that event.

Here are the medal results from Port Coquitlam:

In Gi, in Male 30-Plus, White belt (-200.6 pounds), Nate Cross struck gold.

In Male 30-Plus, Blue and Purple belts (-167.6), Steve Kragt grabbed bronze.

In Male 30-Plus, Blue belt (-200.6), James Minifie struck silver.

In Female 17-Plus, Blue and Purple belts (-132.3) Demie Leduc grabbed gold.

In Nogi, in the Male 17-Plus White belt (-143.3), Andrey Skofenko got gold.

In the Male Blue belt (-200.6) James Minifie struck for a second silver.

In the Female Blue and Purple belts, Demie Leduc scored a bronze.

Among the kids, all in Gi, in the 10-11 White belt (under 79.4 pounds) Finlay Vance brought home bronze.

In the 11 Yellow and Yellow Black (under 110.2) Christopher Wood came away with a bronze.

And in the 9-13 Green Yellow and Yellow Black (-121.3) Nate Kulachkosky took home bronze as well.

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