18 medals for St. Lazare Taekwondo


PHOTO BY RICK WOOD

Left to Right: (back row): Grand Master Sami Mazraani, Gabby Cote, Sarah Longlade, Connor Wood, Olivia Wood, Austin Brown, Xander Derix, Elinda El-Hendi, Kaitlyn Ip, Emma Gonsalves. (Front Row): Serena Dutkiewicz, Nathan Ip, Sierra Dicerni, Zachary Johnson, Gavin Simpkin, Kiefer Gonsalves, Anthony Patone.

On Saturday, November 19, 18 athletes from St. Lazare Taekwondo attended a competition in Montreal. The annual tournament hosted by Dando welcomed over 950 participants at Centre Claude Robillard. Coached by Master Andre Zaraa, Grand Master Sami Mazraani and Kim Tetley-Gerard, the athletes brought home a total of eight gold medals, six silver medals and four bronze medals.

Gold medalists included first time competitors Serena Dutkiewicz (yellow belt green stripe, U9), Gabrielle Cote (yellow belt green stripe, U11) and Sarah Longlade (yellow belt, U13). Emma Gonsalves (yellow belt green stripe, U13) also brought home gold. Serena won her first fight 5-4 and her second fight 14-4. Gabrielle won her first fight 5-2 and her second fight 5-4, making a come back of 3 points in the final minute. Sarah won her fight 6-4, after taking the lead from a 3-3 score at the end of the first round. Emma won her fight 9-0, with athletic ease.

Seasoned fighters and gold medallists include Elinda El-Hendi (green belt blue stripe, U11), Gavin Simpkin (blue belt, U9), Austin Brown (red belt, U13) and Connor Wood (green belt blue stripe, U11). Elinda won her first fight 10-8 after scoring a 3-point kick in the last remaining seconds. She won her second fight with a score of 9-7. Gavin won his first fight 8-5. His second fight was against a red belt (Gavin recently obtained his blue belt) and won the fight 6-4 after easily avoiding the new-style maneuvers his opponent attempted. Austin won two fights by mercy in the second round with scores of 14-2 and 18-6, respectively. Mercy is awarded and the fight is stopped when a competitor leads their opponent by 12 points. Connor won his first fight with a score of 7-2 and his second fight with a score of 14-2, earning a mercy with 30 seconds remaining in the second round. He won his third fight with a score of 7-4.

First time competitors and silver medallists include Sierra Dicerni (yellow belt green stripe, U9), Nathan Ip (yellow belt, U7) and Anthony Patone (yellow belt, U11). Sierra fought hard, maintaining the pressure until the last moments of the fight, with a final score of 15-21. Nathan won his first fight, but lost his second fight. Anthony easily won his first fight with a score of 17-8 and his second fight with a score of 6-3, but lost the gold medal match. First time competitor and green belt, Joe El-Hendi (35+) had an exciting, neck and neck match finishing with a score of 10-11 for a well-earned silver medal.

Silver medallists also include Olivia Wood (green belt blue stripe, U9) who won her first fight 5-3 but lost a close second fight 0-2. Nathan Lukacs (blue belt, U9) also won his first fight 4-2, but lost his second fight 0-6.

Bronze medallists include athletes in the U11 category: Kiefer Gonsalves (green belt), Zachary Johnson (yellow belt), Kaitlyn Ip (green belt) and Xander Derix (blue belt). Kiefer won his first fight but lost an evenly matched second fight 4-3. Zach maintained an even score of 0-0 after the first round, easily dodging his opponents’ attacks. The second round ended with a score of 3-5. Kaitlyn fought a close match with her opponent, only surrendering points through half-point deductions from being knocked down with the new style of front-foot fencing. She stood her ground for a final score of 1-4. Xander fought with intensity and landed several unscored 3-point kicks, but ended with a final score of 7-11.

All competitors showed excellent drive and a display of good sportsmanship. Congratulations to all athletes!

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