Category Archives: team USA

Pan American Gold

Team USA Member Xander Eddy –¬† Youngest American to Win Gold at WAKO Pan American¬†Championships

Xander Eddy
Pittsburgh Martial Artist, Xander Eddy wins 2018 Pan American Championships – Gold Medalist

9-year-old Xander Eddy of North Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, has become the youngest American to win the Pan American Kickboxing Championships in history.  His record setting performance took place in Cancun, Mexico October 23-28 at Barceló Maya Beach.  Eddy claimed a Gold Medal in the open weight class for Team USA.

Eddy earned a spot on the United States Kickboxing Team by winning the selection trials in Kansas City, Missouri in February.  His teammate, Luke Lokay, a 15-year-old also from North Huntingdon, won the 63- Kg division to qualify. The selection process is limited to one competitor per weight class who is the current national champion officially recognized by their National Olympic Committees or Ministry of Sports.  World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO) is the largest international organization of kickboxing, and the governing body of Amateur kickboxing sport certified by SportAccord. WAKO is affiliated in 128 nations on 5 continents officially recognized by either National Olympic Committee or relevant National Government Sports Authority responsible for than 4,000,000 practitioners from across the globe

Both athletes faced adversity leading up the championship.  In August, Xander shattered the growth plate in his foot practicing for the event.  The injury was severe to his base leg which was critical for kicking and movement.  It was questionable if he could participate. His training partner Luke tore his ACL and meniscus and broke his tibia and knee cap in 2012. Doctors speculated he may never play sports again. Both competitors overcame the odds and competed at the highest level for kickboxing this side of the hemisphere.

Xander Eddy, the youngest American to win Gold at WAKO Pan American Kickboxing Championships

Competitors from over 30 countries represented. In the final bracket, Eddy dominated 6 rounds against the top ranked athletes from Chile, Puerto Rico and Mexico by a combined score of 30-3. In the finals, he faced Guatemala in a heated fight that pitted chants of ‚ÄúUSA‚ÄĚ vs ‚ÄúGuate.‚Ä̬† In dramatic fashion, after 2 rounds the score was tied forcing an additional round to determine the champion.¬† Eddy scored a sidekick to take the lead and as time expired, he executed his patented ‚Äúaxe‚ÄĚ kick to win Gold for America.¬† He became the youngest athlete to win a Gold Medal for Team USA at the Pan Am Championships in history.¬† Lokay also represented well, but fell to Guatemala in the final bracket claiming Bronze for Team USA.

Lokay and Eddy each have been training at Allegheny Shotokan Viola Karate in North Huntingdon since they were 4-years-old.¬† Their Sensei, Bill Viola Jr., is the director for WAKO region 10 which oversees Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, West Virgina, and Washington, DC. He explains, ‚ÄúLuke and Xander set themselves apart with work ethic. Win or lose this kids are great role models. They have character.‚Ä̬† Eddy was asked to carry in the American flag by his teammates during the opening ceremonies. Eddy accepted, ‚ÄúI just wanted to make my dojo, parents and country proud.‚ÄĚ The duo represents Pittsburgh and all of Western Pennsylvania on the international kickboxing and karate circuit.

Luke Lokay and Xander Eddy warm up for competition

Eddy has won every recent major tournament he has attended including Open-Weight Grand Championship Title at North American Open in Las Vegas, Nevada (part of UFC‚Äôs International Fight Week), The Battle of Atlanta in Georgia, and US Open ISKA World Championships in Orlando, Florida. His “Norwin” community has gotten behind him in a big way!

congrats xander BK
Norwin Showing its Support

WAKO kickboxing was one of thirteen combat sports participating in the first ever World Combat Games which were held in Beijing, China under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).  WAKO Kickboxing is slated to gain IOC membership this December joining traditional Karate which will be represented at the 2020 Games in Tokyo, Japan under the World Karate Federation.

It was nearly 20 years ago that Allegheny Shotokan Alum Doug Selchan won Gold in +80kg Kumite at the 1999 Pan Am Games for Karate in Winnipeg, Canada. Even though kickboxing and karate are technically different sports, Xander’s parents say they are honored for him to follow in such prestigious footsteps.  Pittsburgh has a rich tradition of world-class martial artists.

doug selchan pan am gold

 

Next up, Xander, Luke, and their dojo will be traveling to Los Angeles, California this February for the ‚ÄúCOMPETE International Championships.‚Ä̬† #kickboxing #pittsburgkickboxing #teamusa #usakickboxingteam

 

 

 

Doug Selchan USA Karate Pan American Games Gold Champion

selchan kumite

Profile:  USA Karate Champion Doug Selchan

U.S. Karate Team Captures Gold in Men’s Kumite

Doug Selchan
Doug Selchan USA Karate and Pan American Games Champion

U.S. Olympic Committee Press Release  WINNIPEG, Canada

The U.S. karate team ended its competition at the¬†1999¬†Pan American Games the same way it began the Games — with gold¬†medals.

George Kotaka (Honolulu, Hawaii), John Fonseca (Northbrook, Ill.) and¬†Doug¬†Selchan (North Huntington, Pa.) each won a gold medal in men’s kumite¬†in¬†their respective weight divisions to give the U.S. a total of five¬†individual gold medals. Akiru Fukuda (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and¬†Kellie¬†Kennedy (Seattle, Wash.) won gold medals in men’s and women’s kata on Sunday.

“We started with gold, and we ended with gold,” an elated U.S. head¬†coach¬†Tokey Hill said. “I can’t ask for more out of my boys and girls than¬†that.¬†They delivered.”¬†¬†Kotaka came back to defeat Alberto Espejo (COL) in the finals of the under¬†65kg. After giving up the first point with 2:43 remaining, Kotaka¬†scored¬†five times and held Espejo scoreless for the remainder of the bout.¬† “It was really nerve-wracking, but once we got out there, the jitters¬†were¬†gone and it was time to fight,” Kotaka said. “I initiated the attack¬†and he¬†(Espejo) countered it on the first point. But I knew that sooner or later,¬†because there were three minutes, I could come back and get some¬†points back.”

Fonseca never trailed in his bout against N.L. Sardenberg (BRA) in the¬†men’s under 80kg, needing only two minutes to score the maximum points¬†to¬†earn the gold.¬†“He (Sardenberg) is a very strong fighter, very sharp,” Fonseca said.¬†“But¬†¬†every body has good and bad days, and I felt very on today and maybe he was¬†a little off.”

Selchan completed the karate competition with a hard fought win over Altamiro Cruz (BRA) in the men’s over 80kg. The bout was stopped¬†several¬†¬†times after Selchan suffered a scratch above his right eye early in¬†the¬†match. Selchan recovered to take a 3-2 lead with 27 seconds remaining¬†and¬†then scored an Ippon with 10 seconds remaining to put the match out of¬†reach. Cruz scored with three seconds left, but time expired with¬†Selchan¬†leading 5-3.¬†“I knew I had it all along,” Selchan said,

“Not to sound conceited,¬†but¬†¬†this week I was very confident. I was in pretty good shape, felt¬†strong and felt good. I needed this win. It was a big win for me.”

Men’s Kumite Individual +80kg Gold Medal Match

  • Doug Selchan (USA)
  • Altamiro Cruz (BRA)
  • 3T. Manuel Costa (URU)
  • 3T. Yoel Diaz (CUB)

Norwin Student Gets a Kick From Karate -Pittsburgh Post Gazette By Torsten Ove

 

US Open

us open karate

Viola Karate РPittsburgh Area Karate Dojo Wins

US Open ISKA World Martial Arts Championships

The All-Star Team ‚ÄúKumite‚ÄĚ traveled to Orlando Florida for the 2018 The US Open held July 6-7 at Disney‚Äôs Coronado Springs Convention Center.¬† The tournament, broadcast live on ESPN2 and ESPN3, is recognized as the world‚Äôs largest sport martial arts competition with over 40 countries and 6 continents present. The two-day tournament showcased 200,000 square feet of competition that included karate and kickboxing.

 

Representing Pittsburgh were 10 members from the Viola Karate Dojo including Sensei Bill Viola Jr., (Head Coach), Sensei Cameron Klos (Player Coach), and Sensei Gary Klos (Assistant Coach). All members placed in the top two in their respective divisions.  The students were the only champions from the Western Pennsylvania region.

Results include: Luke Lokay:  Gold 14-15 black belt sparring, Silver Clash Contact Fighting, Stephen Jackowski:  Gold 12-13 Advanced Kata, Bronze Advanced Weapons, Nicolette Jackowski: Gold 14-15 Intermediate, Silver Kata, Lucy Lokay: Gold 12-13 Advanced Gold sparring,  Gabby Viola Gold 6-7 year old Advanced Sparring, Silver Kata, Taylor Provence: Silver 10-11, Silver Sparring and Xander Eddy 4x Gold 8-9 year Advanced.

Lokay and Eddy each earned a spot to represent the United States¬†as members of the 2018 ‚ÄúTeam USA‚ÄĚ at the Pan American Kickboxing Championship in Cancun, Mexico October 24-28th.¬† Lokay will represent America in the 63- Kg division and Eddy secured the 30- Kg weight class. The selection process is limited to the current national champions officially recognized by their National Olympic Committees or Ministry of Sports.

Lokay, a Norwin High School student explains, ‚ÄúRepresenting my country is such huge honor. I am training every day to make my family and coaches proud. I know a lot of the kids at the dojo are counting on me.‚ÄĚ Lokay and Eddy each have been training at Allegheny Shotokan ‚ÄúViola‚ÄĚ Karate in North Huntingdon since they were 4-years-old. Their Sensei, Bill Viola Jr. explains, ‚ÄúLuke and Xander set themselves apart with work ethic. They are both naturally talented, but it‚Äôs what you do with that talent that gets you to the next level. They have the determination and dedication to win.‚ÄĚ

Eddy is one of the youngest members to make Team USA but has already amassed an impressive resume. In 2017, he earned the Open-Weight Grand Championship Title at North American Open in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event was part of UFC‚Äôs International Fight Week. Eddy proudly explains, ‚ÄúI only had one thing on my mind‚ÄĒwin.‚ÄĚ The victory put him on the radar of the coaching staff. Lokay and Eddy are the first US Team members to earn a team selection for The World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO) from Western Pennsylvania.

Read more