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Competition Team Update: AGF State Championships

This Saturday the Pride/Lovato BJJ Competition Team spent a long day at the American Grappling Federation's Oklahoma City Open. Hard battles were fought, medals were earned, and lessons were learned. I want to highlight some of my students who did outstanding work this weekend.

First off, I want to talk about my Fighter of the Day, Cole Harvey! This guy fought and won four times that day, securing the Gold in Gi, and the Silver in No Gi. His Gi division was stacked with great competitors, and he had to fight three tough matches for the Gold. I chose to highlight Cole because he did an outstanding job of listening to his coaches, responding to their directions and following his gameplan for success. Great work.

Cade won two divisions, one of them at a higher weight class than his own, securing 2 gold medals!

Jason fought hard through two tough divisions. In Gi, he applied the throws and attack combos we worked on the day before, an executed them perfectly for a gold medal. He also won silver in No Gi.

Halee fought for her first time on Saturday, and she did a fantastic job, winning her last match for Bronze in Gi!

Shaun did a great job as well, fighting for his first time ever and taking Silver in his Master's Gi division.

Eden pushed through some tough battles and bad calls to take home Gold in No Gi and Silver in Gi. He has been competing regularly for over a year and has still never been submitted. Nice work Eden.

Although he did not place this weekend, Noah did a much better job of working his takedowns and being aggressive on the mat. He has really stepped up his training in the last few weeks and I hope to see him continue to persevere.

Isaac took Silver in his Gi division. His technique was there, and he was working his game, but his opponent wanted it a little more that day.

Katelyn won Bronze in her Gi division, fighting two other extremely tough girls from Lovato's.

Bella has made some major improvements since her last competition, and I cannot wait to see more from her in the future. She has a great understanding of the sport and she did an awesome job.

Madison lost her first match and took 2nd due to a little bit of hesitation and getting caught in a really great guard game. However in the consolation match she turned up the aggression and won 7-0.

James won silver in Both divisions, he did well overall, ultimately losing the finals primarily due to cardio. This is a great lesson for future competitions!

Matt moved up a weight class in No Gi, fighting two much bigger guys and ending up with the Bronze. I think his confidence broke down before his Gi division. I think Matt beat Matt that day, because I know I have seen him do much better!

Keelie did her absolute best, fighting in what might have been the toughest and most talented division of the day, and taking 1 silver and 1 bronze.

And as for me? I won my No Gi match for Gold. My opponent came right out of the gate attacking my legs for the first 3 minutes. After I escaped the position I was able to score the takedown and position to win.
In Gi I fought an opponent with a very tough guard game, and never was able to really get to work. However, I have been back to the drawing board, working with Professor Rafael on some ways to shut that guard down.

Thank you to all of the parents for coming out and letting your kids compete! Our word of the month is perseverance, and I know that my students embody this virtue. Even if they didn't win today, I know they will be back with a vengeance next time!

Thank you to Coach Epps, Coach Jessie, Coach Josh and Coach Kevin for coming out and helping coach the students, I appreciate every one of you.

A special thank you to Professor Rader and all of the Lovato's team for Coaching me, and for always being gracious to our group. One team, one tribe