• Staff Sgt. James Markham (red gloves), Troop B, 2nd Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, and Sgt. Colt Brown (blue gloves), United States Army Combatives School, 82nd Airborne Division, compete in the Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament at Ritz-Epps Physical Fitness Center, Jan. 19. The Soldiers were fighting under the advanced rules using mixed martial arts tactics in a safe, 24-foot round enclosure. (Photo by Sgt. Amie J. McMillan, 10th PCH PAO)

    82nd Airborne Division hosts Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament

    Staff Sgt. James Markham (red gloves), Troop B, 2nd Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, and Sgt. Colt Brown (blue gloves), United States Army Combatives School, 82nd Airborne Division, compete in the Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament at Ritz-Epps Physical...

  • Private Jodoniss Edwards (red belt), Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 2nd Battalion, 319th Field Artillery Regiment, and Pfc. Jesse Sablan, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment compete in the Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament at Ritz-Epps Physical Fitness Center, Jan. 18, fighting under the standard rules. (Photo by Sgt. Amie J. McMillan, 10th PCH PAO)

    82nd Airborne Division hosts Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament

    Private Jodoniss Edwards (red belt), Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 2nd Battalion, 319th Field Artillery Regiment, and Pfc. Jesse Sablan, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment compete in the Fort Bragg...

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (Feb. 1, 2013) -- Soldiers had the opportunity to showcase their hand-to-hand, close combat skills during the Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament at Ritz-Epps Physical Fitness Center, Jan. 18 and 19.

The 82nd Airborne Division Combatives and Advanced Tactics School hosted about 450 fights that brought more than 123 Soldiers, including five female Soldiers, to participate in the two-day tournament. The Fort Bragg Combatives tournament, a quarterly event, was the first advanced-rules event held at Fort Bragg since 2008.

On the first day of the event, competitors began their fights using standard rules and as they advanced, they began using the intermediate rules, requiring the use of shin guards for striking. During the finals, there were a total of 14 fights using advanced rules in the tactical enclosure, which allowed fighters to use mixed martial arts tactics in a safe, 24-foot round enclosure.

"These competitions are held as a way to motivate Soldiers to train," said Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Yurk, director of tournament, non-commissioned officer in charge, 82nd Airborne Division Combatives and Advanced Tactics School. "They believe they are coming out here to have a good time, to fight and leave with a title, and they're doing all these things, but what they're really doing is becoming better Soldiers and better warriors," he said.

The tactics these Soldiers used to compete against each other in this tournament are the same tactics the Army trains them to use in a combat situation when an enemy is within a short distance.

"Combatives relate very well to tactical situations. When you're in a tactical situation downrange, you have to make that decision to continue fighting or to get up and run. Your buddies to your left and right are relying on you not to give up and to finish the fight. To me, that's what combatives is all about, finishing the fight, having that willingness to close the distance with the enemy and finish the fight -- plain and simple," said Staff Sgt. Chad Pehowic, senior Level III combatives instructor, 82nd Airborne Division Combatives and Advanced Tactics Schoolhouse.

The first place winner of the 155-pound weight division was Sgt. 1st Class Grant Shanaman, Company C, 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment, Long Rang Surveillance Company who is no stranger to Army combatives. Shanaman competed in the All-Army Combatives Championships in 2005, taking away the second place title for the welterweight division.

"I tell my Soldiers all the time, you're not always going to shoot at a target, but you're always going to be within striking distance, five to ten feet is striking distance," said Shanaman.

Trophies provided by the the Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation program were awarded to the first and second place winners of each of the seven weight divisions. Third place winners received a coin from the 82nd Airborne Division commanding general.

• Spc. Derek Saari, Company B, 4th Sustainment Brigade won the first place title for the 125-pound weight division; Spc. Tallin Jalo, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 4th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment won the second place title; and Pfc. Jesse Sablan, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment won the third place title.

• Sgt. Jimmylee Quiambao, Company E, 1st Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment won the first place title for the 140-pound weight division, ; Spc. Terry Nguyen, Company A, 782nd Brigade Support Battalion won the second place title; and Spc. Vichetra Lim, Troop C, 3rd Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment won the third place title.

• Sgt. 1st Class Grant Shanaman, Company C, 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment, Long Rang Surveillance Company for the 155-pound weight division, ; Pfc. James Thrower, United States Army Combatives School, 82nd Airborne Division won the first place title; won the second place title; and Spc. Joseph Guerra, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 3rd Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment won the third place title.

• Sgt. Jeremy Hopper, United States Army Combatives School, 82nd Airborne Division won the first place title for the 170-pound weight division; Pfc. James Linton, Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 2nd Battalion, 319th Field Artillery Regiment won the second place title; and Pfc. James Figueroa, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 508th Special Troops Battalion won the third place title.

• Spc. Timothy Amsdill, 340th Psychological Operations Company won the first place title for the 185-pound weight division, ; Sgt. Gilbert Villa, Forward Support Company, 2nd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment won the second place title; and Sgt. Eric Bast, Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 3rd Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment won the third place title.

• Sgt. Colt Brown, United States Army Combatives School, 82nd Airborne Division won the first place title for the 205-pound weight division; Staff Sgt. James Markham, Troop B, 2nd Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment won the second place title; and Spc. Brenton Martin, Charlie Company, 1st Squadron, 38th Cavalry Regiment, Long Range Surveillance Company won the third place title.

ª Spc. Jovon Jackson, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment won the first place title for the 205-pound and above weight division; Staff Sgt. Henry Starke, Company C, 96th Civil Affairs Battalion won the second place title; and Sgt. 1st Class Rick Wells, United States Army Special Operations Command won the third place title.

Congratulations to all the winners of the Fort Bragg Combatives Tournament. If anyone is interested in competing in the next tournament or have questions regarding the Combatives School, contact the 82nd Airborne Division Combatives and Advanced Tactics Schoolhouse through e-mail at: 82dairbornecombatives@gmail.com.

The next tournament is tentatively scheduled for April.

Page last updated Fri February 1st, 2013 at 00:00