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ADCC 2005 – A Look Back At The Women’s Divisions!

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PIC (by Keith Mills): Fellow country-women Kyra Gracie and Leka Vieira of Brazil battled in a classic match in the finals of the under 60 KG class.AVAILABLE ON DVD AND SHIPPING TODAY! Only at FIGHTMARKET.COM!On May 28th and 29th, the ADCC 2005 brought the Submission Wrestling World Championships to the United States for the first time, bringing the world’s biggest grappling event to Long Beach, California. In an event that will go down in history as the best display of grappling the world has seen to date, the 1st ever women’s divisions were perhaps the most compelling new element.’The MMA scene for women has been developing slowly, and the ADCC took to the idea immediately when it was presented’ states ADCC spokesperson Miguel Iturrate. ‘The sponsorship for travel and accomodations was prepared with the ADCC and the principal sponsor Infinity TV, and a myriad of sponsors, including FIGHTMARKET.COM, BJJMart.COM, RAGS, DOGSofWAR.COM, Brian Cimins and Grapplers Quest and private sponsors like Mark Rossel got the prize money together. There was a lot that went into it, but none of it compares to the dedication and effort of the elite women athletes that competed. The women’s scene has developed enough that a Submission Wrestling World Championship is warranted, I think. What resulted in the competition was truly historic.’Two weight classes were created, under 60 KG (132 LBS) and over 60 KG. In addition, and Absolute weight class would test the mettle of the ladies on the event’s second day, and a total of $15,000 in prize money was allocated, making this the top women’s grappling event of all time. A match by match description of the tournaments and photo galleries are here!THE ‘UNDER 60 KG’ WEIGHT CLASSOpening Round:Gazzy Parman (USA) v. Leticia Ribeiro (Brazil) The opening match saw both ladies perhaps facing jitters, as it took a while to get into the game. Ribeiro is a BJJ World Champion who is known as a wiz with a gi, and Parman is an experienced competitor with an extensive resume in BJJ as well. Extensive stand up, and when it went to the ground, it was Parman who avoided losing points. Parman advanced, but it did take an overtime to decide.Megumi Fujii (Japan) v. Rima Haddad (Canada)Fujii, known as ‘The Princess of Sombo’ in Japan because of her leglocks faced off against Canada’s Rima Haddad. Fujiii was also the smallest competitor in the main draw, weighing just under 120 lbs. Haddad was a late addition who had been training with the highly skilled FFA school out of Florida. FUjii woul dictate where the match occured, as Hiddad could not get a takedown, and then Fujii transitioned and finished with an arm bar.Kyra Gracie (Brazil) v. Erica Montoya (USA) This was the marquee matchup of the first round, as Kyra Gracie of Brazil squared off with USA’s Erica Montoya. Gracie, at 18 years old is already a celebrity in Japan, and she preapred for this event with 2x ADCC Champ, uncle Renzo Gracie. As for Montoya, she is perhaps the USA’s top name among female MMA artists, as her youth and skill have been establishing her reputation since she was 16 years old. Gracie was all over Montoya from the opening bell, as Erica had to defend several locks and chokes.Leka Vieira (Brazil) v. Roxanne Modaferri (USA) Modaferri has been making a name for herself in MMA, where she has 2 incredible wins over Jennifer HOwe, who was widely considered the top American woman fighrer out there. Vieira is a legend in Braizlian JJ< as she was the first woman black belt to cross over and garner international attention. Vieira would prove too technical for the game Modaferri, who went for it in her own right. Vieira would finish with an arm bar after a fierce defense by ‘Rox’. Alternates:Tara LaRosa (USA) v. Sari Redzeposki (Australia)Larosa would use a judo throw early on to get to the ground in control. From there, the head and arm choke was only seconds away, as Larosa finished in roughly 1 minute.Round 2:Gazzy Parman (USA) v. Leka Vieira (Brazil)This was a grudge match, as it was a rematch from JJ competitions. Despite the tension on the mat, both women showed a high technical level. After an overtime, it was Vieira who advanced, taking out her rival.Kyra Gracie (Brazil) v. Megumi Fujii (Japan)The Japanese star against the young phenom – what would happen? Gracie came out aggressive once again, attacking Megumi at a high pace. Fujii would do a solid job of defending, but the aggression of Kyra would eventually take the Japanese star out.Gazzy Parman (USA) v. Megumi Fujii (Japan)In the 3/4 match, Megumi Fujii of Japan took out Gazzy Parman with a knee bar roughly two minutes to secure 3rd place.FINALS:Leka Vieira (Brazil) v. Kyra Gracie (Brazil)A Classic battle. Gracie and Vieira would exchange position and techniques for 16 minutes in a battle that many JJ people were calling the ‘old school’ versus the ‘new school’. ‘This was the most technical, the best match in the ladies division’ stated one observer at the event. ‘Vieira may be well known, but her techniques are still fresh and new, and she is an elite athlete. With Kyra, you see the killer instinct of a Gracie.’For 16 minutes, it was Kyra that stayed one step ahead and won on points to become the ADCC’s first woman’s under 60 KG World Champion.THE ‘OVER 60 KG’ WEIGHT CLASSOpening Round:Juliana Borges (Brazil) v. Hannette Stack (Brazil) Borges squared off against Stack in a battle of Brazilians. Stack had a similar style to Borges, and may in fact have been a threat to win the division if she could get by Borges. This was not to be, as Borges started her inevitable march in methodical fashion, scoring points and staying safe, Borges would rarely be threatened if at all during this tourney, and in fact she would not have a point scored against her.Stacy Cartwright (Australia) v. Amanda Gielsten (Norway)Cartwright would be the talk of the tournament, as her attacking style would catch people by surprise all day long. She aggressively came out against the Norwegian, who is a training partner with Jon Olav Einmo. Gielsten would not escape the opening five minutes, as Cartwright took her out with a submission.Merloes Coenen (Holland) v. Yuki Kondo Kubota (Japan) Coenen, who was cornered by Bas Rutten, made quick work of Kubota, a veteran Japanese competitior who came out of retirement to compete in the first ever ADCC for women. Coenen took a knee bar during a heated exchange of positions, and finished off Kubota.Megumi Yabushita (Japan) v. Amanda Buckner (USA)Yabushita is a veteran MMA star in Japan, where she has logged 15 bouts and lost only 1. What she lacks in precision in grappling she more than makes up for with sheer determination and grittiness. Buckner, a truly cross trained MMA female athelete with a solid resume, would put Yabushita in several poor positions early in the bout, but could never take her out. After the points started at the 4 minute mark, it was Yabushita who scored for passing the guard.Alternates:Kizma Button (USA) v. Jessica Ross (USA)Button, a bit of a phenom at 16 years old, was the heaviest competitor in the weight class as well as the youngest. She would use her spot well, taking out veteran JJ stylist Jessica Ross in quick fashion.Round 2:Stacy Cartwright (Australia) v. Merloes Coenen (Holland)Cartwright would catch Coenen by surprise, spending a large part of the match with the Dutch star in a triangle and then in a triangle mount.Juliana Borges (Brazil) v. Megumi Yabushita (Japan)Borges would grind out Yabushita on points.FINALS:Stacy Cartwright (Australia) v. Juliana Borges (Brazil)It was in the finals where Cartwright was exposed as a purple belt – despite a great night of submissions and displaying guts and sportsmanship, Borges was too strong and she was able to shut down he lanky Australian. Cartwright lost points pulling guard. Cartwright did not have enough sweeps, as she would be stuck there. She was also forced to use the closed or triangle guard to hold of Borges’ pressure for several minutes throughout the match,THE ABSOLUTES – THE WOMEN TESTED!Opening Round:Kizma Button (USA) v.Juliana Borges (Brazil)Young Kizma squared off against Borges in the first round. Borges was imposing her methodical style on all of her opponents, and Kizma’s potential for explosiveness made for an intriguing first round bout. Kizma would use the wrong strategy, as she allowed the time to get eaten up playing the stand up game with Borges. Once it got to the ground, Kizma was going for it, however Borges was able to shut down her offense and score points herself. The match ended 6-0 after the 10 minute regulation.Stacy Cartwright (Australia) v. Merloes Coenen (Holland)A rematch from the compelling first round match, Coenen would be deducted a point for an illegal and controversial slam (she wasnt aware it was illegal), and Cartwright pulled off the win against COenen for the 2nd time, this time in a much harder fought battle.Megumi Yabushita (Japan) v. Tara LaRosa (USA) Larosa, who won her alternate match impressively, entered the ABSOLUTE when under 60 KG champion Kyra Gracie elected to sit out the tournament. The match had the added condition that Larosa had fought Yabushita in MMA in Tokyo, so the opponents were familiar to each other. 9-0 Larosa.Leka Vieira (Brazil) v. Amanda Buckner (USA)Vieira and Buckner engaged in a great match that epitomizes what the compettion was all about. Many exchanges of position as both ladies battled with abandon. In a bit of a surprise, it was Bukner that caught Vieira in a knee bar for the finish.Round 2:Stacy Cartwright (Australia) v. Tara LaRosa (USA) Larosa would be working a choke from behind/off to the side as time expired. The card saw her up 2-0 as she advanced to the finals. After a grerat showing, cartwright was exhausted and done for the day, finishing 2nd in her weight class and 4th in the Absolutes.Juliana Borges (Brazil) v. Amanda Buckner (USA)3Borges would do what she had done all day – she shut down Buckner’s game, not letting Amanda work submissions. In the end, it was Borges up 3-0 on a guard pass.In another sign that the women came to fight and leave their all in the ring, Amanda Buckner got a bye for the 3rd place finish, when Stacy Cartwright, Megumi Yabushita and Merloes Coenen where not able to continue. ‘Every competitor wanted to come back for that last match, but it was the coaches and the medics that made the wise decision. The ladies had nothing left to prove!’ stated the spokesperson at the time. Finals:Juliana Borges (Brazil)v. Tara LaRosa (USA) The twenty minute final would be a grind, as Larosa was not able to impose her game on Borges, who looked like she could have competed all day. Larosa would get trapped on the bottom early on, and despite her best efforts, Borges wasn’t moving unless she wanted to! Borges went on to win, sweeping her weight class and the Absolute division.FINAL THOUGHTSThe spokesperson struggled to wrap up the event properly. ‘You know, thelevel of heart, guts and technique that was presented was a landmark for women’s sport in the 21st century. I think the next ADCC, scheduled for 2007, should be working to get the sponsorships necessary to continue with the women’s divisions.’ continues the spokesperson.’In fact, it seems that their may be more weight classes that could be developed, and this could in fact get the competition even sharper. Perhaps under 55 KG, under 60 KG, under 65 KG and then over 65 KG. There is a lot of room for this to develop.’ concludes the spokesperson.The video of this event is available as part of the complete ADCC 2005 set – only at FIGHTMARKET.COM! See for yourself….COMPLETE PHOTO GALLERY BY KEITH MILLS:

 Cartwright dominating Coenen in the semi finals. Megumi isloates the leg for the finish - MEGA MEGU! Vieira and Buckner tangle! Amanda picks a single. Vieira working top position against Amanda. Cartwright working to get to guard. Coenen slams Cartwright. Borges has the Absolute Title wrapped up against Larosa.
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