• New York Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Joseph O' Connor reassembles a M249 Squad Automatic Weapon during the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 5, 2014. About a dozen New York Army National Guard Soldiers from various units across the state took part in the three-day competition, which tests troops' physical fitness, military knowledge, endurance, marksmanship, land-navigation abilities and other soldier skills. O'Connor is a Buffalo resident and member of the 427th Brigade Support Battalion.

    New York Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition

    New York Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Joseph O' Connor reassembles a M249 Squad Automatic Weapon during the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 5, 2014. About a dozen New York Army National...

  • New York Army National Guard Sgt. Masami Yamakado of Charlie Troop, 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry, prepares to qualify with an M16A2 rifle at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 4, 2014.  The weapons qualification is part of the New York Army National Guards annual Best Warrior Competition.

    New York National Guard Best Warrior Competition

    New York Army National Guard Sgt. Masami Yamakado of Charlie Troop, 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry, prepares to qualify with an M16A2 rifle at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 4, 2014. The weapons qualification is part of the New York Army National...

  • Smoke rises as Soldiers from the New York Army National Guard fire their M16A2 rifles during the annual Best Warrior Competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 4, 2014.  This is one of several events that each Soldier will be graded on during the three-day-long competition.

    New York Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition

    Smoke rises as Soldiers from the New York Army National Guard fire their M16A2 rifles during the annual Best Warrior Competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 4, 2014. This is one of several events that each Soldier will be graded on during...

  • A Soldier from the New York Army National Guard pulls a draggable stretcher, also called a sked, during the Stress Shoot portion of the annual Best Warrior competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 4, 2014. In this event each competitor must exhibit their ability to shoot their weapons effectively while in a stressful environment.

    New York National Guard Best Warrior Competition

    A Soldier from the New York Army National Guard pulls a draggable stretcher, also called a sked, during the Stress Shoot portion of the annual Best Warrior competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 4, 2014. In this event each competitor must...

  • New York Army National Guard Sgt. Justin Zuchowski strides toward the finish of a 10-kilometer ruck march during the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 5, 2014. About a dozen New York Army National Guard Soldiers from various units across the state took part in the three-day competition, which tests troops' physical fitness, military knowledge, endurance, marksmanship, land-navigation abilities and other soldier skills. Zuchowski is an Attica N.Y resident and member of the 642nd Aviation Support Battalion.

    New York Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition

    New York Army National Guard Sgt. Justin Zuchowski strides toward the finish of a 10-kilometer ruck march during the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition at Camp Smith Training Site, N.Y., April 5, 2014. About a dozen New York Army...

  • The three winners of the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition were announced April 5, 2014, after three days of difficult challenges. Spc. Caleb Longley, Sgt. Sean Massimo and Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Dorvee were the over-all champions, however only Longley and Dorvee will continue on to the northeast region finals.

    New York Army National Guard Best Warrior Winners

    The three winners of the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition were announced April 5, 2014, after three days of difficult challenges. Spc. Caleb Longley, Sgt. Sean Massimo and Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Dorvee were the over-all champions...

CAMP SMITH TRAINING SITE, N.Y. (April 7, 2014) -- After days of difficult challenges, two Soldiers have taken top honors in the New York Army National Guard's Best Warrior Competition, held here Thursday through Saturday.

Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Dorvee and Spc. Caleb Longley have proven that they have what it takes to represent New York at the northeast regional Best Warrior Competition.

Dorvee, a supply sergeant with the 1427th Transportation Battalion, is the winner of the Active Guard and Reserve,or AGR, Non-Commissioned Officer category. Dorvee scored the highest number of points in both NCO categories, and will therefore represent New York.

Sgt. Sean Massimo, a military policeman with the 442nd Military Police Company, is the winner in the Traditional NCO category. Longley, an engineer with the 152nd Engineer Support Company, is the winner in the Traditional Soldier category.

"I'm glad I got to come here," said Massimo, a resident of New Rochelle, N.Y. "I loved the competition."

Both champions of each NCO category won by less than a point, said Command Sgt. Maj. Frank Wicks, the New York National Guard senior enlisted adviser.

"This is the closest competition we've ever had," Wicks said.

The annual event tests competitors in a wide range of Soldier skills, including physical fitness, military knowledge, endurance, marksmanship and land-navigation.

There are more than 10,000 Soldiers in the New York Army National Guard.

"We developed the events based on the skills that every Soldier should have," Wicks said. "It makes me proud to see these Soldiers step up to the challenge in order to train with the objective to be the best of the best."

Each day of the competition started early, ended late, and was filled with physically demanding events with little time to rest in between. The second day of the competition began at 5:30 a.m., with an Army Physical Fitness Test, where Soldiers performed a specified number of push-ups and sit-ups, and completed a two-mile run within a specified time, based on their ages.

"The stress from this brings out your weaknesses and helps you realize what you need to work on," said Dorvee, a father of two and resident of Queensbury, N.Y. "I think this is beneficial for every Soldier."

This year, rain and other unfavorable weather conditions did not deter the competitors from trying their hardest.

"It was a very hard competition," said Longley, who lives in Pulaski, N.Y. "I felt prepared; but you can only prepare so much."

That's because every competitor had to prove their physical and mental proficiency, while also demonstrating that they could operate effectively under stress.

"The timeline for the events made transitioning extremely intense," said Dorvee. "I definitely have a sense of accomplishment."

At the northeast region competition, Dorvee and Longley will compete against the Best Warriors of Vermont, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and New Jersey.

"I'm nervous but I feel that this competition has really prepared me," said Longley. "I just plan to keep training and to do my best."

The Region One competition is scheduled to take place May 13-15, in Camp Ethan Allen, Vt.

"I'm extremely proud of the competitors," said Wicks. "It's obvious that each of the units sent the right Soldiers to this competition."

Page last updated Mon April 7th, 2014 at 00:00