Monthly Archives: October 2016

Derick Wellman is a National Judo Referee

koji-uchida-judo-practice-05212016-2-0The Irwin Cohen Memorial Judo Tournament took place on October 15, 2016 in Chicago, IllinoisDerick Wellman assisted in the officiating of this event. Derick also passed the national judo referees test and is an official National Judo Referee. Derick’s service to judo is second to none. The 4th dan black belt has been in judo for 43 years. Despite his tight schedule, Sensei Wellman dedicates countless hours to learning, teaching and practicing judo. His passion for the martial art is contagious. Many judokas have benefited from his mentorship and have made great achievements on and off the mat. The need for judo referees is immense. If you are in judo and no longer compete, officiating the sport is another way of giving back. So get involved. We will see you on the mat.


Kirkwood Judo Club Veterans Training Camp 2016

Kirkwood Judo Club was the host of the Veterans Training Camp on October 7-8, 2016. This is2016-veterans-training-camp-3 the third of four training camps held in the Midwest region. Members of White Dragon Judo Club were at Finney’s MMA gym for this camp. Sensei Russ Little and Tom Kuhne were the facilitators for this event. The purpose of this camp is to prepare the veteran judokas for the upcoming . Both days consisted of numerous drills for newaza and tachi waza. After the drills there was randori for standing and groundwork. It was a great workout and the veterans were making great use of their precious time.

Gateway Judo Tournament 2016

2016-gateway-judo-invitational-championships-9The 6th annual Gateway Invitational Judo Championships got underway at the Overland Community Center in Overland, Missouri on October 1, 2016. Tournament director, Derick Wellman had worked countless hours building this event into one of the most competitive judo tournaments in the Midwest region. Dan Dillion and player/coach Anthony Weeks guided Team White Dragon for this event. In the junior category, Hayden Gost made his tournament debut. “The Big Gost” maintained an offensive strategy in route to a bronze medal. The youngest of the Fajor clan, Dina Fajor, made a name for herself in her tournament debut. Still a work in progress, Dina displayed massive determination needed to be successful in this martial art. She took home a bronze medal. Fred Heidmann won silver in his first shiai. Ryland Darevsky, executed great newaza that was good enough for bronze in his debut. In a weight class that he was clearly the underdog, Issac Valdez De Soto pulled off three epic upset victories to collect his third consecutive Gateway Judo Tourney gold medal. Issac’s gold medal match was one of the most exciting matches in the history of this event. Clearly behind by a wazari, Valdez De Soto executed a splendid koshi guruma with time running out to win the match. Julius Amann grinded out a bronze medal in his second tournament of the year. Alex Halon finished third in the junior middleweight class. Jeric Gumahin had a busy day against strong opposition. Despite the obstacles he took silver home for the day. Riesen Riley rebounded from her third place finish at this year’s Konjo Dojo Judo Fall Championships. She went undefeated and was all smiles when she stood no. 1 on the medal stand. Saba Fajor went 3-1 on the day and placed second in her division. Manareldeen Fajors picked his opponents apart with his relentless attacks. He collected his third consecutive gold medal of the year. In the senior division, Taylor Brown displayed a well rounded judo game going 2-1 on the day and a silver medal in her White Dragon debut. It was a rough but positive learning experience for Dennis Williams in his first shiai. Although he did not medal, the ambitious young judoka showed raw potential and a desire to learn. Veronica Booker took home bronze in her third tournament. Adam Young won silver in light heavyweight category. After a two year hiatus from this event, Demonn Smith won gold in the senior2016-gateway-judo-invitational-championships-51 heavyweight category. In the gold medal match, the veteran hit a nice sasae tsuri komi ashi to osaekomi and hung on for the victory. Philip Vojta had his slingshot out for this tournament. He continues to improve and tally up a list of upset victories. He collected his second consecutive gold of the year. In the veterans division, Jay Baker placed second respectfully. Glen Trotter took gold in the middleweight division. Dan Raney displayed superior newaza in route to a gold medal in the veteran heavyweight class. The MVP of the tournament was Anthony Weeks. “The fighting patriarch of TEAM 3D” mauled the competition in the open division taking gold and convincingly going undefeated in this tournament.

2016 Konjo Dojo Judo Fall Championships

2016-konjo-dojo-fall-judo-championships-2The 2016 Konjo Dojo Judo Fall Championships took place at the Hillsboro Intermediate School in Hillboro, Missouri on September 10, 2016. The tournament director for the event was the legendary Randy Pierce. Derick Wellman officiated this regional event. Team White Dragon was coach by Eugene Hamilton. Team White Dragon was highly successful as all members medaled at this event. Three member of the judo team made their tournament debuts. In the junior division, Alex Halon displayed exceptional potential in his debut at this event. He took 2nd place in his category. Julius Amann faced tough opposition in his debut and placed third respectfully. Saba Fajor, sister of Manareldeen Fajors, rolled through her competition in her debut. She made it look easy taking first place. Veronica Booker improved from her debut at the 2016 North South Judo Tournament. She went undefeated in her division taking home 1st place. Riesen Riley made her way through a tough division and placed third. Cameron Duffield displayed excellent newaza and his opponents had no answer for his game. “The Cam” went 3-0 on the day. Manareldeen Fajors won first place in his division for the second consecutive time. In the senior division, Sam Coln’s desire, determination, and drive proved too great for his opposition as he won first place for the first time in his young judo career. Philip Vojta pulled off a couple of upsets in his category winning 1st place for the first time for Team White Dragon. Adnan Gutic scored the MVP honors in this tournament by taking first in weight class with a patented tomonage in the medal round. The veterans division saw the likes of Glen Trotter working an aggressive all around game. He went 4-1 on the day on his way first place showing. Jay Baker placed 2nd in a talented division. Demonn Smith took 1st place for the first time this year in the heavyweight division.

Promotion Night July 27, 2016

It was a very special night at White Dragon Judo Club. Anna Feygina was promoted to Nidan, 2014-armed-forces-championshipsecond degree black belt in Judo. Anna Feygina is the most decorated female judoka in White Dragon Judo history. Anna has dedicated countless hours to learning and training in judo. Always the first one in and the last to leave the dojo, Anna never shied away from hard work. The process has earned her numerous achievements on and off the mat. At 31, Anna has been ranked among the best at 57kg. A fierce competitor, Anna shows no signs of slowing down with her ultimate passion for the martial art of Judo.

Summer Friendship Tournament 2016

konjo-dojo-friendship-tournament-2016The Konjo Dojo Judo Club hosted the third Friendship Tournament of the year on July 16, 2016. 7th dan Randy Pierce was the tournament director for this event. This year the Friendship Tournament has set new records for competitor participation. Dojos from all over the state have sent students to this tournament. This tournament’s purpose is to help parents, junior and senior judokas learn about how a shiai tournament is conducted. Judokas young and old find out fast the purpose of all those drills and exercises they do in practice. Everybody WINS! Everybody gets a medal and everybody has fun. Interested? What are you waiting for? Get on the mat! There is plenty of room. Judo is a great exercise and you might gain a friend or two in the process. Contact us and checkout the website at