Eighth Army holds combatives tournament
Eighth Army Public Affairs | .
published: July 21, 2016
USAG YONGSAN — Soldiers took to the mat to compete in the Eighth Army Combatives Tournament at Collier Field House, U.S. Army Garrison, Yongsan.
In a day filled with blood, sweat and extreme effort, Soldiers from U.S. Army formations around the Korean Peninsu- la fought to see who would emerge victoriouss and who would tap out.
In the team competitions, 35th Air Defense Artillery Brigade took rst place, well ahead of the 2nd place 2nd Infantry Division by fifty-five points. 1st Signal Brigade took third place.
Designed from lessons learned on the battlefield, Army Combatives incorpo- rates striking and grappling techniques from many martial arts.
Early matches in the event consisted entirely of ground ghting and grap-pling techniques. Final rounds incorporated striking into the fights.
Spc. Versean Ponds, 35th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, who took first place in the welterweight division, described his win as the accomplishment of a long-held goal.
“Winning this tournament was … one of the reasons for me re-enlisting to come to Korea,” said Spc. Ponds. “The tournament was great. I had some stacked competition in the welterweight division. It really didn’t come easy.”
Event organizers said the tournament showed how well different units within Eighth Army work together.
“I could feel the camaraderie of different major subordinate commands who cooperated in this competition,” said Sgt. Bryan A. Granger, Eighth Army, organizer of the combatives tournament. “Events like this can really build up the unity and strength of soldiers.”