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Alpha Jiu Jitsu + Fitness: Eight Man Elimination

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At one o’clock PM, Pacific Standard Time, Alpha Jiu Jitsu + Fitness kicked off its first Eight Man Elimination EBI-style tournament. The tension in the air was thick as the eight men, ranked purple to black, warmed up. $500 was on the line and each man knew they were going to win it. 

 

Ryan Mulvihil (black belt) and Morgan Matuizek (purple belt) slapped hands and bumped fists. Matuizek immediately sat down to play guard--his dominant strength. Mulvihil tried passing the guard, almost made it, and was captured between the legs of Matuizek. Matuizek body triangled Mulvihil. Mulvihil, in turn, stood up and shook him down. Matuizek landed in full guard. Attempting the scissor sweep, he released his guard only for Mulvihil to pass putting Matuizek in one of Mulvihil’s well known guillotine submissions. Matuizek scrambled and escaped. Not to be outdone, Mulvihil followed Matuizek, fought for full mount, and landed the guillotine. The first match was completed: Mulvihil had won and moved on to the semifinals.

 

(Photography courtesy of Johnathan Houser)

Cameron Robinett dominated the entire match with Shea O’Neill. The match was over quickly as Robinett outwrestled his opponent. O’Neill put on a good fight for Robinett in the time they grappled, making him really work for the submissions. Most of the time, O’Neill was in the dominant position.The smallest grappler ended up tapping to the larger opponent from a rear naked choke after Robinett muscled his way to the backpack position.

 

David Francesco Reveles could be seen meditating before his match. Someone who placed an importance on meditation, Reveles was underestimated by Alex Larmey from the very start. Larmey assumed Reveles would be loose and fluid when grappling (“Perfect for me to bowl over”), but the reality was a stark difference. Reveles bowled Larmey over “like a train” and the following match ended up going to the bottom of the third round. Larmey won based on escape time. Both competitors were evenly matched from the start and provided strong competition for each other. The match was back and forth before Larmey won based on the fastest escape time.

(Photography courtesy of Johnathan Houser)

 

 

The match between Hayden Hudiburg and Eric Foti was a nail biting event. The audience was held captive on the edge of their seats as Hudiburg (purple belt) grappled against Foti (brown belt). Despite the differences in rank, the two were evenly matched. Hudiburg scooped up every opportunity he could take as he searched for submission after submission. The two managed to reset to standing several times before Hudiburg was finally able to finish Foti with an ankle lock. This was the first purple belt to beat a brown belt in Alpha Jiu Jitsu + Fitness’ Eight Man Elimination.

 

(Photography courtesy of Johnathan Houser)


The people at home watched with rapt attention as the preliminary rounds ended. Many were seated at houses of friends joining in watch parties. The hundred people on Facebook live were in reality more like two or three hundred people watching. Drinks were passed around and bets were made. Who was going to make it to the finals round? The obvious choice was Mulvihil vs Larmey. 


Mulvihil was the clear favorite in this fight. He was a black belt, Robbinet was a purple belt. Mulvihil dominated much of the match. Though the competitors were up on their feet often, Mulvihil and Robbinet still shot for each other time and time again trying to get the other to the ground. Mulvihil took Robinett down the majority of the time. When they hit the ground, Mulvihil was immediately on the offensive, looking for chokes of any sort he could grab. He tried the guillotine, but lost it. He attempted the darce, but Robbinet’s thick neck and muscular shoulders provided him the clear advantage. In a scramble, Robbinet escaped and latched himself onto Mulvihil’s back. Mulvihil tried to escape, but his efforts were futile. Robbinet encircled his arms around Mulvihil in what the commentator described as a mandabull crank. Mulvihil tapped in defeat. The crowd was stunned. Robbinet moved on.

 

(Photography courtesy of Johnathan Houser)


Hudiburg, being known as someone who would go for the legs without hesitation, tried playing a different game. He didn’t necessarily want to go for the legs this time, but when the opportunity presented itself, he struck. Larmey, a different man from his last fight, was faster and better equipped to shut down Hudiburg. Though Hudiburg put on a fantastic show in his first round and was able to beat Foti, a Renzo Gracie Brown Belt, Larmey was no match for Hudiburg. Larmey positioned himself for the kneebar and the two went rolling—Hudiburg to get out of the submission, Larmey to keep it. The kneebar proved too tight for Hudiburg as he struggled in vain. He tapped. Larmey was going to the final round. 

 

Larmey, slow to start in his first match, submitted Robinett in less than a minute. “I left to take the dog out, I came back, and the match was over!” reported one of the online viewers. It was a “blink-and-miss-it” type of match with Robinett tapping frantically at the end.

 

With a victorious roar, Alex Larmey leaped to his feet and stalked around the mat. One couldn’t tell that he had just been in Europe for a Worlds BJJ tournament. Larmey could have easily grappled the rest of the competitors and won based on the energy he was exuding at the end of the final match. When he interviewed, he humbly gave a great compliment to his first competitor whom he had first underestimated. One might expect to see Larmey in a Jiu Jitsu hall of fame.

 

 

(Photography courtesy of Johnathan Houser)

 

The commentator and the interviewer wrapped up the afternoon with a replay of events. Both were very impressed with the matches. There wasn’t a dull moment with any match. The competitors were hungry to win. Hungry to compete. Larmey proved to be the hungriest. 

 

Alpha Jiu Jitsu + Fitness is expected to put on another match in October, though nothing is set in stone for the Post Falls gym.



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