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Friday, July 12, 2024

ISKA Champions Highlighted, Big Changes for BBM Rankings

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Now for the youth 13 & under age group, Judah Sagawa grabbed two more ISKA world championships in CMX forms and weapons and he is the top-ranked athlete in both of those open divisions. He also won the divisional grand championship for traditional weapons and elevates himself to #1 in that category too. Likewise in traditional forms, a divisional grand championship in Orlando for Adomas Rackauskas regains his number one position. For the girls, Adelynn Lau’s consistency in traditional weapons this season including an overall title in Atlanta has her at number one with divisional grand champ from the U.S. Open Madalynn Wiersma at two. Amanda Duarte won an ISKA title against the boys at the U.S. Open for traditional forms and tops that division, with traditional challenge winner Riley Claire Carlisle in second. Savannah Agosto won each of the CMX ISKA titles and is the number one girl in both open forms and weapons for the rankings.Black Belt Magazine would like to congratulate all the ISKA world champions and anyone who has climbed the rankings with their recent performances. All decisions about rankings come from a place of respect for every martial artist willing to test their skills at these major tournaments, and the committee hopes that the rankings continue to generate positive discussion about the sport and provide increased exposure to these amazing athletes. Click here to view the full updated rankings.Photo Courtesy: Lindsey Little Photography

Devon HopperRegarding the more experienced adult competitors, Mouse Millner sits atop 30+ women’s sparring, Amy Williams regains the number one spot in weapons, and Melanie Strauss is ahead of the field in forms. Brayan Rodriguez won the U.S. Open senior sparring overall grand against Santiago Aversso and they are ranked one and two respectively. Kevin Kowalczik and Samuel Diaz III won the grands for forms and weapons respectively, and they sit atop each of those rankings.Regarding the more experienced adult competitors, Mouse Millner sits atop 30+ women’s sparring, Amy Williams regains the number one spot in weapons, and Melanie Strauss is ahead of the field in forms. Brayan Rodriguez won the U.S. Open senior sparring overall grand against Santiago Aversso and they are ranked one and two respectively. Kevin Kowalczik and Samuel Diaz III won the grands for forms and weapons respectively, and they sit atop each of those rankings.Regarding the more experienced adult competitors, Mouse Millner sits atop 30+ women’s sparring, Amy Williams regains the number one spot in weapons, and Melanie Strauss is ahead of the field in forms. Brayan Rodriguez won the U.S. Open senior sparring overall grand against Santiago Aversso and they are ranked one and two respectively. Kevin Kowalczik and Samuel Diaz III won the grands for forms and weapons respectively, and they sit atop each of those rankings.The Black Belt Magazine Sport Karate Rankings have been updated once again following the U.S. Open ISKA World Martial Arts Championships. Thanks to Black Belt Magazine’s partnership with the International Sport Karate Association, the newly-crowned ISKA World Champions will now hold a featured spot on the rankings for an entire year. Meanwhile, the new champions presented the committee with an opportunity to make significant changes to the rankings. These changes can be read in more detail in the preface on the rankings page (click here), but the highlights are that athletes who did not compete in either the U.S. Open and Battle of Atlanta have been excluded; the term “CMX” has been removed from the rankings in favor of using the terms “open” and “traditional” to differentiate the athletes by style instead of by the division they compete in; and there are a few new ranked divisions for females. These changes for our sport’s lady warriors include separating “women’s sparring” into “divisional” and “open weight” to mirror how the men’s rankings are broken down, as well as the separation of Senior Women’s Forms and Weapons into two separate ranked divisions. Again, more detail about these changes can be found on the rankings page. This article serves to provide highlights about the changes within the rankings in the interest of transparency for the subjective process that the committee operates through.Closing out this summary with the team divisions, Team Freestyle put on a show in team demonstration and regained the ISKA world championship. The talented group from San Diego holds on to their number one world ranking with the win. Ben Jones and Esteban Tremblay captured Team Paul Mitchell’s eighth consecutive synchronized weapons ISKA world championship and the dynamic bo duo is firmly atop the weapons division. In forms, Diego and Sofia Rodriguez Florez used their traditional prowess to win the ISKA title and reclaim top honors in the rankings. Lastly, men’s team fighting did not see any change at the top as a hybrid version of the top-ranked Team Straight Up won the ISKA title and the second-ranked Top Ten Team USA was not in action in Orlando. Team Dojo Elite was active at the Battle of Atlanta but had to bow out of the finals due to injury, and stayed put in their 4th position. Team Legend advanced to the finals against the hybrid Straight Up squad at the open to move up to third place as the formidable fighters of Team Diamond G3 swap places with Legend at five.Kicking things off with the adult women, Haley Glass won ISKA titles in both CMX and traditional weapons to maintain the number one position in open and traditional weapons. Her historic Night of Champions effort also included another ISKA title in CMX forms, helping her maintain the top spot in open forms as well. Women’s traditional forms has seen Amber Rutherford skyrocket to the number two spot in the rankings with her ISKA world championship win. She trails only Gabrielle Rudolph who won the NASKA women’s overall forms grand championship at the U.S. Open to further enhance her season with multiple overall grands.
Photo Courtesy: Lindsey Little PhotographySpecial thanks to Lindsey Little Photography for the images used in this article. Visit her Facebook page here.

ISKA Champions Highlighted, Big Changes for BBM Rankings

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