Team Dauntless from Smyrna Delaware has now returned from the 2013 Junior Grappling Association Season Opener and I must say that I stand today changed. It has been my blessing from God to be able to Practice and Teach Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu now in Delaware for over 19 years, but in all my years I can honestly say I have not had such a Team of young people with so much Heart, Skill Level and Spirit.
Mark my words some of the names you read in this blog here today will one day be heard again in terms of great accomplishment through strong perseverance. Perhaps in the fields of MMA, BJJ or if not Martial Arts another equally challenging endeavor. Yes these names will be heard again and when they are spoken of, they will be spoken with Respect, Honor and Blessing.
Team Dauntless took many medals that day, but far beyond medals there is a story of Great Inner Stength, Amazing Resolve, Technical Excellence and Indomitable Spirit. Each and every one of the Children and Teens who came to compete that day faught their hearts out and left it all on the Mat.
Sebastian Beir from Smyrna Delaware competed in both No Gi and Gi events. He was dominating his first match when all of the sudden he had a problem breathing. It may have been low sugar, it may have been nerves but when the match was stopped he of course felt bad. We quickly spoke and I told him don’t worry about it, a man is not measured by how many times he is knocked down but how many times he gets up and that I knew he had much more talent and ability than that.
So Sebastian came back he went onto win a Braonze Medal in the No Gi and then proceeded to fight again in the Gi Divison with many of the same people and even more. He skillfully defeated most of his opponents to again face the person he had trouble breathing with. Well this second time MY EYES WERE OPENED, as Sebastian literally destroyed this poor kid, he out classed and won with the match with a very large score. Being a double elimination tournament Sebastian then faced this same boy (who was a tough competitor) in the final.
So Again they met, Sebastian squared off with him and proceeded again to dominate him, he countered all of his take down attempts to take him down, then on the ground he scored and scored again. Soon it began to look like a basketball game as Sebastian skillfully countered every thing this boy tried to too passing his guard again and again racking up the points!! Then time rang the fight was over and the serious focused face of Sebatian turned into a smile as he looked direclty at me and he and I both knew. HE DID IT, HE WON THE GOLD MEDAL after fighting 6 time and having to fight the toughest guy twice.
Next there is Marco Lemma, also from Smyrna Delaware. This was Marco’s first fight and we spent a lot of time talking before but when the fights started he was ready. He came out like a Real Lion, but smooth and quick too. He was relaxed and not nervous, he won, then he lost, then he came back to win again until he got a Bronze Medal in the No Gi Division which for his FIRST tournament, fighting as a Yellow with other kids his same size and skill level was no small achievement.
Then Marco went onto compete in the Gi Division. Here there were more competitors and one who was like a Giant to Marco, but Marco handled him and was doing well. The kid was taller than me and good, he tried a to pull a flying guard on Marco and again he handled it, but then came a tough armlock by any standard. Marco did not go quietly but really tried to fight it, unfortunately he made one mistake and the kid got it.
Next we went aside to talk and it was clear his arm was hurt. I thought he was out, but not this young man, no today Marco Lemma decided to have RESOLVE. He iced his arm, worked on it with the Medic and he was BACK IN THE GAME, just like a professional athelete. In my heart Marco Lemma is a Champion waiting to happen.
Caleb Sachetti of course is my son but I must honestly say without any biased that I saw the finest Jiu-Jitsu I have ever seen from such a young person. Caleb’s first match was with a big, tall Indian Kid named Vikus. Vikus was tough and good!! The match looked like Anderson Silva fighting a Frankie Edgar, he was that much taller.
The Match was awesome, Vikus came him again and again grabing hold of Caleb and trying to initiate a takedown but Caleb countered it again and again to take him down, score postions and dominate this boy with a tremendous score. Vikus was good too so he escaped and got back up, but Caleb dealt with it. Again he would counter, again take him down and again score. This match was NON STOP for the whole 3 minutes, over and over again Caleb could not drop his guard once, I never knew my Son has such GREAT RESOLVE, as a father I must say I was very proud and honored. At the end Caleb had faught so hard he litterally collasped on the ground to take a rest. Amazing.
Caleb went onto fight another match with another talented kid where he was dominating again, taking him down and scoring, THEN he had to escape a monstor guilotine that would tap most men. He kept his head, he stayed in the counter and got out, then he got the boy Cross Body where his opponent tried to grab his head with his legs and they scrambled a weird way where Caleb’s neck got torqued the wrong way. The Match stopped and his neck was hurting, the medic came looked at it and thought we should get an X-Ray, so Caleb decided even though he go an continue that it was better to get treatment first and then always fight another day. SENSE, I was honored by son’s sense. Later he told me that it hurt from the neck down his back so it was good we stopped and got him checked out. He is fine now.
Nick Walker was the youngest there that day and there were many children in his Division. Nick faught in both No Gi and Gi. At his age and limited time in training I thought Nick worked very hard. All though not all of the moves came as natural for him his Spirit never left the fight. Nick had one particular fight where he was on the bottom behind on points, he managed to get the guard then Hip Pop his opponent to mount and dominate the match until time ran out.
I saw in Nick too the seeds of a future champion. Why? Because he was able to start to feel the energy for certain moves and then put them together to execute. Once he mounted or had a superior position he too exeercised the proper flow to maintain control and adhere to his opponent.
Nick took a Bronze medal in the No Gi division and also competed in the Gi Division. I think now he really is starting to see what Jiu-Jitus is and with time he will become EXCELLENT. Yes I see the seeds of success in Nick Walker and know one day we will be hearing his name again.
Chip Kifer also competed that day. It was his first time and he had perhaps the least experience of the group, but in Chip I saw something. HEART & DRIVE, I saw Heart and Drive, Determination to persevere and achieve. There are so many losers in this world who never try anything, never stick with anything and just take the easy way out, well Chip Kifer is not one of them.
Chip faught in both the Gi and No Gi Divisions, he suffered injuries and what I consider to be some VERY BAD CALLS from some very biased refs, but Chip if you are reading this let me just tell you” “IT DOES NOT MEAN ANYTHING”, You are much more Chip and I will tell you why, because you have Drive and Dedication. If you set your mind to do something, YOU DO IT. Now take this same drive into your classes, come on Mon and Wed as well as Tues and Thrs, learn the more advanced material and spend more time in the Fundemental Material and the next tournament you will ROCK!!
Bella Dunning came to compete only in the Gi division but she did both the Girls Division and the Boys Division. Bella had a great base and executed some good take downs. Her guard was also excellent, I saw one boy constantly try to run from her guard again and again. She also took several submissions.
Bella faught with the heart of warrior, every move she made was wrapped in determination and resolve. Her instincts grew a lot that day as I literally saw her skill level improve the more fights she did. At the end of the day Bella took 2 Bronze Medals in both the girls and boys divisions but again the medals don’t tell the whole story. I think Bella demonstrated a lot of heart and resolve to prove herself in BJJ a future force to be reckoned with.
Ritchie Dunning, the come back kid!! Ritchie faught in on Gi too but he had a lot of competitors in his division. One competitor was a very good boy in a blue Gi. He beat Ritichie in their first match but Ritchie handled it with a really GOOD ATTITUDE. No matter happened he was happy, whether he won on lost you could not tell it, but he always did his best.
Then Ritchie faught the boy in the Blue Gi again to REALLY BEAT HIM. Then because it was double elimination Ritchie had to fight this boy again in the final. The boy was crying and did not want to fight Rtichie again but Ritchie was fine. The final match went on and Ritchie lost to take the Silver in his divisison but again he had the BEST ATTITUDE.
Ritchie with an attitude like that YOU WILL GO FAR IN LIFE, it is true that life is only 5% what happens to you and 95% how you react to it.
Joshua Sachetti faught that day too. My oldest son was such a big help to me, running around helping me with whatever I needed, charging the camera, taking care of other students and never complaining for anything I asked him to do.
Josh was still 17 so allowed to compete but there was no one in the No Gi for him to fight. Then in the Gi there were a few at his weight. His first fight he did so well he zoomed in, took the kid down, mounted and armlocked to win the fight in under 10 seconds. Josh took the Gold Medal in that Division and then realizing Josh’s skill level the Refs asked me if for the next matches they could spot his opponents 5 points ahead. We took this as a compliment and agreed. So Josh went onto fight giving his opponents a 5 point lead.
I was very impressed with son for that once he realized he was really higher level than most the kids there decided to just do each fight as a work out. So Josh let the kids try stuff on him and just used the other matches as training. He is saving himself for the larger Grapplers Quest Tournaments where he will now compete as an adult.
So that is the story of that day, a day that forever has shown me why God has me do what I do. I may not have riches (yet) but I effect lives in a very good and postive way, and I show young people the Value of True Righteous Strength, physical, mental and spritual. THANK YOU FATHER IN THE NAME OF THY SON JESUS CHRIST FOR MY LIFE.
GOD BLESS OUR KIDS