Robbie Lavoie defends against Greg Betlach in men's team sparring.
Five awesome teams battled it out Friday night on stage for men’s team sparring the evening of April 29, 2011 a the Quebec Open in Quebec City, Canada. One judge commented before the matches started that all these fights could be held Saturday night during the finals instead of running through all the teams on Friday night since there was such a good representation of fighters from Europe, Canada and the USA.
The All Stars were first to fight against the European team. Robbie Lavoie of Canada and the All Stars and Krisztian Faroszlcieriez from Hungary put on a good match exchanging point for point. Lavoie ended with an 8-5 score. Jason Bourelly of All Stars could not get his leg working against Zsolt Moradi who kept his leg up and on point throughout the match which resulted in a 1 point win over Bourelly. In the final round, Laszlo Gombos of Hungary was the first to score against Raymond Daniels of Team All Stars. Gombos was also able to avoid Daniels’ deadly jump – turn – sidekick and win his match by one point. But it wasn’t enough as All Stars advanced with a score of 14 – 13.
The Canadian All Stars did their best to hold their own against Full Circle but Jason Grenier of Full Circle scored 12 points which gave his team the lead they needed for Cass Sigmon to play it safe for the win.
In the third round, Robbie Lavoie from All Stars was all over Greg Betlach from John Paul Mitchell, giving the All Stars a 5 point lead to start the round. Elias Lemon of Team Paul Mitchell and Jason Bourelly had a battle of the legs which ended in a 5 – 5 tie. Mike Pombiero of Team Paul Mitchell took one of Raymond Daniels’ famous jump turn sidekick to his nether regions – we have a photo of the kick’s placement. He manned up and finished the fight, but wasn’t able to overcome the point difference for his team.
On went the All Stars to a final match with Full Circle. Hamed Firouzi of Full Circle was absent for the final fight with an injured hip so Damien Rodriguez stepped in for the first fight against Robbie Lavoie. The fighters used up the entire ring, moving the quickest out of all the matches. Lavoie gave his team a 2 point lead. Cass Sigmon faced Jason Bourelly in the next round. Oddly, Bourelly did not use his infamous legs, but he still walked away a point ahead of Sigmon. The final fight was between Jason Grenier and Raymond Daniels. The score keeping was almost as eventful as the final match. The score keeper was new and unable to keep up with all the action. Each score was a battle at the score keeper’s table. In the fight, Daniels didn’t disappoint the crowd, as always, he put on a great show and helped his team extend their score to solidify the win against Full Circle.
The Grand Championship for fighting was completed during the daytime eliminations of the tournament to make room for an international team fight during the night time finals. There was a decent representation of women for the 18-29 divisions for women. Chelsey Nash from Team Paul Mitchell won overall for the women, beating Kelsey Friedlander 8-1. Notable mention, Ina Grondheim was down 6 – 0 in her match against Cyndi Cote and was able to pull out at 8-7 win. She was not so lucky in her fight against Marie-Eve DiCarie. DiCaire made her way through a few other strong fighters including Lace Godin from Full Circle. DiCaire ultimately fell to Kelsey Friedlander’s leg during run offs. Nash beat Sarah-Kim Gagnon and Elyse Gorell to make her way to the finals.
Raymond Daniels had some challenges in the men’s division as Bobby Wallace put up a good fight. It was evident Wallace has been training