Thursday, April 14, 2016

USNA Jiu Jitsu Victorious Over Army in Inaugural Army-Navy Meet

By Cmdr. Matthew Schell and Midshipman 1st Class Nick D’Antonio

Thirteen members of the Naval Academy Jiu Jitsu team traveled to West Point March 26 to take on Army in the first ever head-to-head Army-Navy Brazilian Jiu Jitsu meet. Army did a superb job hosting the inaugural event that was held in Eisenhower Hall.

Back Row, from left: Officer representative CDR Matt Schell, MIDN Mike Landry,
MIDN Jack Timberlake, MIDN Nathan Gilmer, MIDN Jacob Santer.  Middle, from left:
MIDN Dustin Shackleford, MIDN James Michael, MIDN Nick D'Antonio, MIDN Cat Adams,
MIDN Liz Schilder, MIDN Ryan Lewandowski, Coach Michael Cho.  Front Row,
from left: MIDN Dan Grocki, MIDN Alex Laureys, MIDN Tommy Pierce

At the end of a hard day of competition, Navy emerged victorious with 6 wins, 4 losses, and 3 draws.

"Throughout my years at the academy, Jiu Jitsu has tested all members of the team’s leadership on and off the mat," said Jiu Jitsu club president MIDN 1/C Nick D’Antonio, of New Orleans, La. "It is said that the mat reveals even the most well-hidden character traits, and I believe that was most exemplified during this Army-Navy contest."

D’Antonio coordinated the event along with Army Cadet Erica Forktus, of Yardley, Pa.

The matches were “submission-only” with an 8-minute regulation period and a 2-minute overtime period. During the overtime period each competitor was given the opportunity to start out in a dominant position. Matches were declared draws if neither fighter achieved a submission by the end of the overtime period. Submission-only matches require exceptional endurance, mental toughness, and tenacity.

125-pound MIDN 3/C Catherine “Cat” Adams, from New Orleans, La., set the tone early by winning a hard-fought match by arm bar. Adams held her opponent in a triangle choke for about four minutes before transitioning to the arm bar and securing the submission.

MIDN Nick D'Antonio controls his opponent.

In another match, 165-pounder MIDN 1/C James Michael, of Washington, D.C., won in under four minutes when he surprised his opponent with a rapidly applied triangle choke.

MIDN 2/C Dustin Shackleford, from Baltimore, Md., dominated his opponent with wrestling and locked in an arm bar to win his match in 2:45.

Navy secured the victory with two quick arm bar victories by 180-pound MIDN 2/C Jack Timberlake, from Chicago, Ill., and 220-pound MIDN 4/C Preston Webb, from Piedmont, S.C.

MIDN Grocki works for a triangle choke.

"The team showed what they were truly made of in helping me coordinate this meet and by giving everything they had on the mat, and I couldn’t be more honored and humbled to have the opportunity to lead them," said D’Antonio. "Army exceeded my expectations on and off the mat as well, coordinating the lodging and the arena for the event, fighting hard on the mat, and displaying exceptional sportsmanship throughout the entire event. We’ll have tough shoes to fill when we host next year.”

A volunteer coaching staff from Conquest BJJ out of Millersville, Md., coaches the Naval Academy Jiu-Jitsu team. The two primary instructors are Conquest Co-owner and Reserve Lt. Cmdr. Nate Grebb (USNA ’05) and retired Marine Lt. Col. Michael Cho (USNA ’93).  Both coaches are Brown Belts under Conquest’s head instructor, 4th Degree Black Belt, Professor Vicente Junior. Coach Cho accompanied the team to West Point and cornered the Midshipmen in the Army-Navy meet.

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a modern martial art that emphasizes leverage, position, and movement to humanely defeat an opponent. Brazilian Jiu Jitsu techniques to control and subdue an opponent are so effective that they have become foundational to many other fighting arts, such as mixed martial arts, the Marine Corps martial arts program, and Army combatives.

One distinguishing feature of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is the scale of available techniques to apply against an opponent, from simple restraint to grave bodily injury. Jiu Jitsu helps train midshipmen on how to use good judgment in the application of force.

Full Results of the Meet:

125 pound MIDN 1/C Alex Laureys from Pineville, La. – Lost by arm bar. (6:00)

125 pound MIDN 3/C Catherine Adams from New Orleans, La. – Won by arm bar (5:00)

160 pound MIDN 3/C Elizabeth Schilder from Georgetown, Ky. – Lost by arm bar (5:30)

150 pound MIDN 1/C Ryan Lewandowski from Goshen County, W.V. – Won due to opponent disqualification (4:20)

165 pound MIDN 1/C James Michael from Washington, D.C. – Won by triangle choke (3:00)

160 pound MIDN 2/C Mike Landry from Baton Rouge, La.– Lost by arm bar (4:30)

160 pound MIDN 2/C Dustin Shackleford from Baltimore, Md. – Won by arm bar (2:45)

175 pound MIDN 1/C Nick D’Antonio from New Orleans, La.– Draw

185 pound MIDN 1/C Dan Grocki from Honolulu, Hawaii – Draw

180 pound MIDN 2/C Jack Timberlake from Chicago, Ill.– Won by arm bar (3:30)

180 pound MIDN 4/C Jacob Santer from Fargo, N.D. -Draw

190 pound MIDN 4/C Nathaniel Gilmer from Tiffin, Ohio– Lost by Omoplata (3:20)

220 pound MIDN 4/C Preston Webb from Piedmont, S.C. – Won by arm bar (2:35)


1 comment:

  1. This is fantastic... except the first ever Army/Navy Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu meet took place in 2007 in Halsey Field House. It might not have happened again for the next nine years, but it makes this the second time the two have met on the mat for BJJ.

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