The Evergreen Bak Shaolin Eagle Claw Kung Fu Team Win's Again!
The Evergreen Bak Shaolin Eagle Claw Kung Fu Team threepetes victory at the Oregon Rose City Nationals last weekend. With a total of 7 competitors, Evergreen's Kung Fu Team brought back 18 ranking medals. Friday night the team drove down to beautiful Eugene, Oregon for their third appearance at one of the most well known west coast National Black Belt League (NBL) Tournaments. The tournament kicked off with the Black Belt Continuous Fighting Division. Black Belt Jesse Harter and Advanced competitor Shasta Smith competed in this division. Shasta Smith fought first in the Middleweight division, which was mostly dominated by Black Belt fighters. Shasta, new to the experienced fighting style of these competitors had to draw on all of his skill and unwilling to be defeated, moved quick and aggressively to a Bronze medal. Jesse Harter was up next in the Heavyweight division. He clearly represented the team's Chinese Kung Fu fighting style with a charging mirage of swinging punches and won Silver in the division.
On Saturday, the team also dominated the beginner divisions. Owen O'Keefe and Ellen Underwood both won Gold in forms and Silver in point fighting for their respective divisions. Katherine McLain competed in the Intermediate/Advanced division and won Gold in forms and Bronze in point fighting. Then Shasta Smith and John Eastlake crowded the winner's stand after competing in the advanced forms division winning Silver and Bronze. Shasta Smith, pumped from fighting the night before won Gold in the Lightweight point sparring and moved up into the Heavyweight division for even more competition. In the larger division, Shasta qualified to compete for Bronze but took 4th by bowing-out to his Kung Fu Brother John Eastlake who was also in the division. Both fighters fought impressive matches showing quick improvements in strategy, skill, and power since their last competition in Vancouver, BC at the Tiger Balm Internationals.
The Black Belt competition began in the later of the day with the Kung Fu forms division. Jesse Harter and Jessie Smith took Gold and Silver respectively with traditional Bak Shaolin Eagle Claw Kung Fu forms. Jesse Harter then won Gold in the Kung Fu forms division with his Shaolin Staff form. Both victories in the forms divisions qualified Jesse to compete for the Forms Grand Champion. Jesse slammed his staff form out on the gym floor and finished only two tenths of a point behind the Weapon Forms World Champion of the NBL. Last year Jesse placed third in the Kung Fu Weapons Division for the Pacific Northwest Regionals of the NBL, qualifing him for the NBL World Championships. This year there is a good chance that he will go to the Worlds and perform his traditional Shaolin staff form amongst competitors from over fifty NBL sanctioned countries.
Once the forms completed, the Black Belt Point Fighting swung into full effect. Both Harter and Smith were dominant forces in their rings. Jessie Smith landed heavy hits to her opponent and took Bronze. Jesse Harter fought the same fighter from the night before, so the Eagle Fighting Team was able to develop their winning strategy. Jesse technically and physically dominated his opponent and his next opponent bowed-out earning Jesse the Bronze.
Again The Evergreen Bak Shaolin Eagle Claw Kung Fu Club would like to thank its supporters, REC Sports and the S&A Board. And, give a special thanks to Bak Shaolin Eagle Claw Grandmaster Fu Leung and Team Coach Sifu Dana G. Daniels for their winning perseverance. For more information about the Club, contact Jesse Harter at 357-9137 or check out our web pages at www.bakshaolineagleclaw.com.Trophy Count: Black Belt Divisions Jesse Harter Gold, Kung Fu Forms; Gold, Weapon Forms; Silver, Heavyweight Continuous Fighting; Bronze, Point Fighting; Bronze, Grand Champion Forms. Jessie Smith Silver, Kung Fu Forms; Bronze, Women's Middleweight Fighting. Shasta Smith Bronze, Middleweight Continuous Fighting. Advanced Divisions John Eastlake Bronze, Kung Fu Forms; Bronze, Heavy weight Point Fighting. Shasta Smith Gold, Lightweight Point Fighting; Silver, Kung Fu Forms; 4th, Heavyweight Point Fighting. Katherine McLain Gold, Kung Fu Forms. Beginner Divisions Katherine McLain Bronze, Women's Lightweight Point Fighting. Ellen Underwood Gold, Kung Fu Forms; Silver, Women's Lightweight Point Fighting. Owen O'Keefe Gold, Kung Fu Forms; Silver, Super-Heavyweight Point Fighting.