Ok well maybe there was no surfing due to the fact that it was warmer in Maryland then in California! But we did have lots of Cheeseburgers from fatburger and did lots of BJJ moves. (Fatburger put like 10 pounds on me!)
Let me say that no drug on earth can replace the happiness I have right now for how things went in LA at the Pan Kids BJJ tournament. It was by far one of the happiest moments of my life. Our kids did super well and I got to see Team Lloyd Irvin youth win anything and everything teamwise. Hereâ€™s the scoop on how things played outâ€¦
What is the Pan Kids tournament you might ask? Itâ€™s the toughest kids Brazilian jiu-jitsu tournament in the world. All the best kids come from all over for it. We took 2 kids last year, I should point out 2 very good kids at thatâ€¦.we went 0-2. Thatâ€™s how high level this is. **Side note** Those same 2 kids got silver and bronze this yearâ€¦much improved!
Like all the other grappling tournaments there was no striking of any kind. Itâ€™s not UFC fighting or anything like that, Just Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. (just so parents know, we donâ€™t put little kids into cage fights!)
We all starting getting in on Thursday and Friday nights. The flight to Cali is not my favorite part but itâ€™s a necessary evil. I picked up the Murphyâ€™s and Camp Springs kids. The Lara family got in on Friday. Holdenâ€™s Grandma Mrs. Kathy got in along with Spike, Bon Bon and Laura Coeâ€¦.Oh wait a secondâ€¦Laura did not make the trip, please speak with her regarding why! (just messing with you Mrs. Coe)
We had a decent workout at the HCK training center in downtown LA. The kids got to go out and see Hollywood and Holden bought a goofy hatâ€¦.hehe. We met up with Camp Springs and Crazy 88 and all trained together, which was awesome btw. Team Lloyd Irvin Guam was in town but we didnâ€™t meet up to train with them because of scheduling.
On to the tournament. We started off the day strong, Elijah Dorsey from Camp Springs won his weight class and that set the momentum in our favor. Just about every kid on the medal stand was a Team Lloyd Irvin Kid either from us, crazy 88, camp springs or LI Guam. In total we sent 28 kids and 27 medaled in the top 3!
Not to be cocky or anything, well ok maybe just a little. We have by far the best kids Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and kickboxing programs in the world and the Pan Kids proved that. Ok back to the storyâ€¦.
Alexia Lara was first up from Ivey League (I sometimes will put â€œILâ€ for short). In the finals she had a barn burner of a match with a tough girl from California. Alexia scored fast with a double leg takedown (no doubt ms. Teresa should get all the credit for her form) she was up right away 2-0. She then passed the guard with her very powerful bullfighting style and scored 3 more. I donâ€™t remember how but Alexia got rolled and ended up in guard but she swept the girl right away. Now the score was 7-0 with about 2 mins left. They ended up back on the feet and Alexia jumped guard (Luis Lara almost had a heart attack because that wasnâ€™t part of the gameplan!) and the girl passed Alexiaâ€™s guard. Now the score was 7-3. Alexia got back to guard and they came back to the feet where the girl pulled Alexia to guard. With about 30 seconds left the girl threw a triangle on Alexia and man, it was tight! But Alexia, as tough as always, gutted it out and won the match. Way to be tough young lady!
Alexia makes history by being the first kid coached at Ivey League to win a gold medal in a major international competition.
***Side story** Look, and this is something I want to make very clear. To me tournaments and competing and all that jazz is good and fun. But we donâ€™t take kids to these tournaments because I have a need to win or fill a hole in my life. I take them because itâ€™s great for developing social skills and dealing with tough situations, the same as in life. I feel like competing can make a child more prepared for the battles of life. Also, when Alexia won her match, she ran to her Dad and jumped into his arms and was so happy and her old man was so proud of his little girl. Thatâ€™s something Iâ€™ll never forget. Thatâ€™s why I take kids to tournaments, to bring families together and make the kids better people for the future.
Next for IL we had Holden â€œCatcher in the ryeâ€ Murphy.
Holden was in a 3 kid bracket and that means he would compete in whatâ€™s called a â€œround-robinâ€ That pretty much means they would have a first match with the 2 other kids, and the loser of that match would face Holden in the Semi final. If Holden won it would put him in the finals with the kid that already beat the kid Holden beat. (thatâ€™s the best I can do for explaining it, sorry)
In Holdenâ€™s first match he had a pretty big kid but Holden didnâ€™t seem to care at all and went to work. Keep in mind that Holden is used to working out with adults so a bigger opponent is fitting for him anyway. He took the kid down with a cross side leg trip and was up 2-0 right away. They scrambling back to the feet and Holden hit a bodylock spin takedown (not an easy move!) and scored again. Pretty much the whole match was Holden scoring with move after move. To the other kids credit, he put up a great fight and didnâ€™t get tapped. The match ended 13-0 and Catcher made the finalsâ€¦
In the finals, he faced Howie ??? from Paragan BJJ in Santa Barbara, Cali. Holden ended up losing the match via armbar. Holden, like the 3%er he is, didnâ€™t make any excuses. He got beat plan and simple but walked off with a silver medal at his first international tournament. A good start to a great career for Mr. Catcher in the Rye.
So thatâ€™s how it all went down in California. A gold and silver medal and a lot learned. Team Lloyd Irvin youth took the team title in the teens, juveniles and the overall team title. This let the world know again that we have the best kids around.
Before I forget I wanted to say thanks to all the parents for helping out with everything. Mike Murphy and Luis Lara have been absolute saints for the kids program and itâ€™s parents like those that keep the kids programs running full steam.
After the tournament, we hit up fatburger and beat that place down. Aleixa and Holden laid down the law on some good cheeseburgers!
Whatâ€™s next for IL kids? Grapplers Quest on April 9th. Want your child to go? Talk to Mike Murphy regarding this or email Miss reesee at [email protected]
–Master Danny Ives