A team of 11 Yukon judokas took to the mat at the 2016 Edmonton International Judo Championship last weekend in Alberta.
All of them posted wins, some took home a medal.
Jadon Leenders, a green belt from Whitehorse’s Shiroumakai Judo Club, won two out of three round-robin bouts to claim silver in the U16 over-73 kilogram male division.
“Jadon definitely did well. Although I expected as much,” said Shiroumakai sensei Aaron Jensen, in an email to the News.
Leenders, who won his division at last year’s Yukon championship, won his first match against N.W.T. Judo’s Wilson Elliot and lost his second to gold-winner Ian Ryder, a brown belt from Steveston, B.C.
He then clinched the silver with a decisive win in his third bout in the round robin.
“Jadon’s last and final match was against another blue belt who was much shorter. Jadon dominated by throwing this opponent three times, scoring a Yukon and two wazari … the wazari combined to be ippon and an instant win.”
Shiroumakai’s Daniel Tonner almost picked up a bronze in the U14 under-42 kilogram male division. He lost his opening fight in the main draw but won his next three to reach the bronze final.
Shiroumakai’s Cassi Jensen also dropped a bronze fight in her U14 under-44 kilogram female division. She lost in the quarterfinal but won a bout in the B draw to reach the bronze fight.
“Cassi lost her first (fight), dominated her second opponent, then lost to the same fighter who got her down in the first match due to an unorthodox grip and dragging her down into a hold down,” said Aaron. “Again another excellent learning scenario we can build on for the next competition.”
Northern Lights Judo Club’s Jonathan Racine ran into some tough competition in the U14 under-46 kilogram division. Racine won his first bout 10-0, but then lost to the eventual gold medal winner in the quarterfinal.
Shiroumakai’s Wyatt Burnett, competing in U14 under-34 kilograms, lost his first match to the eventual semifinalist but won his first bout in the B draw.
Yukon was also represented in the U10 and U12 in which all competitors are given medals for competing.
In U10 Gabriel Racine went undefeated in three fights in the under-41 kilogram division. Whitehorse’s Lia Hinchey and Jayme Hinchey, and Carcross’ Kenai Bryden, each went two for three in their respective weight classes.
Yukon’s Samara Jacob also won two of three and Alex Kiriak one of two in their U12 divisions.
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