Local tae kwon do students bring home gold from tourney
Rex Hutton's Tonganoxie Tae Kwon Do Academy scored several gold medals in sparring April 30 at Grandmaster Jason Yi's Tournament in Topeka.
The academy had 22 students compete in the tournament.
Micaela Weaver, Colten Pope, Colten Weaver, Dalton Sharp, Dominique Shafer, Joe Beach, Jessica Carlson and Jess Sours all had first-place finishes in sparring at the tourney. Michaela Weaver, Nate Allenbrand and Shafer all had first-place finishes in form. Gage Leihy placed second in form also.
"We were blessed this time," Hutton said about the tournament.
Overall, Tonganoxie had 11 first-place finishes, eight second-place finishes and three third-place finishes. Jake Calabrese finished fourth in sparring in his division. The event attracted more than 500 participants and brought athletes from throughout the Midwest, along with Minnesota and Texas.
Colten Weaver, who just turned 8, has been lighting up tournaments since he started competing four years ago. Weaver still is undefeated and is a four-time Kansas state champion.
Colten Pope, who has competed for a year, also is a Kansas state champion. He, too, is undefeated. Pope currently competes in the 5-6 age division.
Hutton said he wasn't certain when his academy's next tournament would be, but his group does plan to compete at the America State Games on July 30 in Colorado Springs.
Jason Yi's Tournament results
(belt rank is in parentheses)
Michaela Weaver (yellow), first in sparring, first in form; Colten Pope (yellow), first in sparring.
Colten Weaver (black), first in sparring; Dalton Sharp (yellow), first in sparring; Nate Allenbrand (yellow), first in form; Hunter Leihy (yellow), second in sparring; Heath Martin (green), second in sparring; Dereck Rose (green), third in sparring; Jake Calabrese (yellow) fourth in sparring.
Dominque Shafer (yellow), first in sparring, first in form; Gage Leihy (yellow), second in sparring, second in form; Joe Beach (red), first in sparring; Alec Smith (red), second in sparring.
Amanda Laffler (green), second in sparring; Jessica Carlson (black), first in sparring.
Mike Schad (green), did not place; Jess Breshears (black), did not place.
Courtney McHenry (yellow), third in sparring; Stacie Cheyene (blue), third in sparring.
John Allenbrand (yellow), second in sparring; Curtis Campbell (green), second in sparring ; Jess Sours (blue/red), first in sparring.