Copa de Marianas features four black belt women fighting for $4k

Registration is closed, and the brackets are online for the 2017 Copa de Marianas BJJ Gi/No-Gi Championship Tournament, scheduled for Saturday at the Father Duenas Memorial School Phoenix Center, starting at 8 a.m.

The 10th Copa de Marianas will feature the first Women’s Black Belt Division, with elite competitors from around the world competing for a combined cash prize of $4,000. A Master’s Division (37 years and above) was also added this year, for all belt levels. Other divisions include Kids, Teens, Female, and Adult Divisions.

“We’ve got about 200 entries, which is about average for the Copa,” said Steve Shimizu, owner of Fury Promotions, which has produced this event for the last decade. “This tournament is generally for the athlete field and their families, but since it’s the 10th, we wanted to do something special.”

Shimizu said that four “bad—” black belt champions competing against each other in the 55-kilogram class is reason enough to watch. There’s Emma Xiong, China’s first BJJ black belt, and Talita Alencar, the 2017 world champion. Kristina Barlaan, from the U.S., is a black belt under the Caio Terra Team, and Tassia Pimenta is a Gracie Barra black belt under Romulo Barral.

For these women, first place means a $2,500 prize, while $1,000 and $500 go to second and third place, respectively.

Shimizu also announced a new division, the Master’s Division, for those 37 and up. These masters will receive the same top three medals as winners in the other age, weight and gender divisions.

“We’ve got medals for the top three finishers, but basically what they’re winning is bragging rights for a year until the next Copa,” said Shimizu. “This tournament is a good way to keep the blades sharp until the Marianas Open, which is right around the corner.”

Copa de Marianas is open to the public, all ages are welcome to attend the event – tickets will be sold at the door. Food and vendors will also be on site.

The 2017 Copa de Marianas is Presented by 76 / Circle K and Sponsored by: Bank of Guam, Aloha Maid, Fokai Industries, the Stations of KUAM, Paradise Fitness, Crust Pizzaria, Pacific Solar & Volotaics, Mat’kadot Engravers, THE WHITE HOUSE | Productions, Affiliated Lifestyles, Shut Up & Fish, Strictly Tees and Café Takoyaki Tama.

This article was originally published on PDN on Oct. 25, 2017. View here.

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