Three No-Gi World Medals for SBG
Diggins & Loewen Win Three Bronze Medals At IBJJF No-Gi Worlds
This last weekend saw two of SBG Portland’s finest competitors and coaches compete at one of the biggest BJJ tournaments in the world. Black belts Amanda Loewen and John Diggins both competed in their respective weight classes and in the Absolute divisions. They put in a handful of incredible performances on their way to collectively securing three medals from four divisions.
Coach John Diggins displayed excellent jiu jitsu throughout the tournament, winning his first match in his weight class, before narrowly losing his second. The defeat came as a result of a late advantage given to John’s opponent for an attempted ankle lock. The attempt was safely handled by Coach Diggins, but it was enough for his opponent to be handed the win despite John’s own efforts to secure arm bars from off his back. The narrow defeat was enough for John to win the bronze medal in his Master’s weight class.
Coach Amanda Wins Absolute Bronze
Coach Amanda Loewen was disappointed by her loss in her weight class, but, determined to make up for that the next day, performed excellently, winning the first match in the Absolute bracket. Losing her semi-final Absolute match, Amanda came away with another bronze to add to her ever-growing collection of IBJJF medals. Despite being disappointed in her own performance, Coach Amanda had many positives to take from the experience, and her attempt to always seek to win by submission, despite the IBJJF ruleset, is admirable.
Everyone at SBG Portland are hugely proud of the efforts and success of John and Amanda. Both give so much to each and every member of SBG, in Portland and beyond, and it is a huge pleasure to see them compete at the highest level. Congratulations to you both on your great efforts and success!
Afterward the event, Amanda released the following statement on her Facebook Athlete page. Be sure to take the time and Like it if you haven’t already.
“I can go about this a couple different ways, but I’m going to choose to look at the positive. This year I’ve dealt with and overcome some interesting things. I really would have liked to overcome this challenge as well, but I wasn’t able to do that. The me that rolls in the gym, and the me that competes seem to be two different people, mentally that is. I was flattered by @flograppling for mentioning me in their article, but also let the outside pressure get to me. The whole ‘she’s destined to win thing’ which I know is ridiculous, but it was a real thing for me. There was nothing I wanted more this year than to become the no gi World champ. Instead of the ‘oh wells, and I should have dones’, here are several positive things from this weekend:
*Saulo Ribero said “hello champion”, so that pretty much made my weekend. *I got to wear an excellent rash guard made by Hyperfly. The folks that own that company are some of the nicest and positive people I’ve ever met. Thank you. *I was extremely close to toe holding my first opponent and she knew it. Next time I will take the entire foot off. (I only say that because I’ve been working on my leg locks and it felt good to be on the attack vs the defense). *I didn’t get leg locked this year, so that’s cool.
*I tried to submit everyone of my opponents, knowing that this is a specific rule set my objective is to ALWAYS finish. *I got to watch John kill it in his matches, one day I’ll be able to roll as good as him. *Its sunny here.
*I was on the podium twice this year.
Thank you to my students, who always believe in me. Thank you to my coaches who always look beyond my defeats. Thank you to Coach Ryan at New Athlete for the encouragement, the physical improvements and belief that we are better every time. Thanks again to @hyperflylaurenz for the rash guard he gave to John, and just being rad in general. Garden of life, you’ve been amazing in my prep and day to day lifestyle. I couldn’t ask for a better sponsor.”