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Club Competition

We had our Annual club competition, and all told it was a weird experience for me. Last time around, I had just started refereeing. Fortunately I had Sensei Jesse Wang with his years of experience as a guide. In addition, Larry and Wilson - who both had significantly more experience than me were there as well. All 3 gave me advice and tips as I was going through the matches. Unfortunately, Sensei Jesse passed away earlier this year, and Larry wasn't able to make it. Thankfully I still had Wilson and Mark joined us as well, but I was refereeing a lot more matches this year. It was just strange on so many levels without Jesse.

The beauty of Refereeing was that I was able to see all of the matches. It was nice to see all of our students - both young, old and in between get a chance to compete - even if it was against the same crowd. My son Mitch took second place in his division. He led most of the way through his first match - with a Wa-zari and a couple of Yukos, but then was caught in the last minute and thrown for Ippon. In his second match he also had 3 Yukos and a Waza-ari and held on to win. I am happy with his progress - looking at the video replay, his focus and intensity was there, but still has room for improvement.

As I've mentioned many times before, our Sensei teaches Judo at two colleges, and our competition also included these students as well. The were some great ippons that left no doubt, and there were other calls that, while watchin the video, probably should have made. Still, all told, I don't think too many people were upset with the officiating.

Finally, it was my turn to compete. I got to compete against Mark and Mike. Quite frankly, I didn't bring my "A" game. I played Mark first, and got a Yuko off of a Sloppy Tani-Otoshi attempt. I managed to quickly transit into Ne-Waza and pinned him well enough to hold on for a Waza-ari to win as time ran out. Unfortunately for me, I had to play Mike immediately after. Mike managed to throw me for two Yukos, and I lost the match. He told me afterward that he thought I had him a couple of times. Watching the video, I saw that I had several opportunities to throw him, but I was so winded that I couldn't capitalize. That, coupled with how fat I look in the video is my motivation for losing weight for the new year - at my next tournament, I'd like to play 198!

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