BY RAY VAN COR
The Greenville Standard
The 22nd South Alabama Karate Open was held this past weekend and despite the rising high fuel cost competitors from eight different states flooded the Straughn High School gymnasium for the event.
This touted martial arts competition did not disappoint neither spectator nor competitor and with the stands packed to the rafters made for an incredible tournament.
Event founder and Director 7th Dan Isshinryu, Hall of Famer, Mark Rudd said, “We had a great turnout and a great time. A little over 150 competitors vied for the gold at the South Alabama Karate Open.”
Tournament Black Belt Grand Champions were Youth Black Belt, Jace Hines of Enterprise Alabama, Adult Kata, Jeff Jones of Jonesboro Louisiana, while Camille Holley of Brian Christian College Martial Karate Academy from Dayton, Tenn., formerly of Andalusia’s Isshinryu Dojo, took Women’s Fighting, and Tony Williams of Lebanon, Tenn., brought home the Black Belt Championship for Men’s Fighting.
In Kyu competition, local martial artist from the Sekkin Sen Karate Dojo in Georgiana, the mother and Son duo of Jennifer Stanford and Rhys Stanford of Evergreen had an incredible tournament.
Rhys Stanford won first place in the Kyu 10-12 year old weapons and second place in open hand kata.
Jennifer Stanford in her first outing took second in weapons and third in open hand kata in her division.