SAN DIEGOÂ â€” CoachÂ Marcus Andrew Navarro and three competitors from the local Godâ€™s Gladiators Martial Arts team traveled to Serra High School September 24 to participate in the the highly-anticipated NAGA California grappling Championships.
Mike Noriega, Brandon Emmet, and Jake Cordero were the three contestants who competed in this yearâ€™s championships. All three succeeded in bringing home medals in their respective divisions.
â€œI am extremely proud of my team for fighting hard throughout the long day and using their training to aid them in their fight,â€ said Marcus Navarro. â€œAnd we would all like the give the glory to God for our success in the tournament and for keeping us safe throughout the endeavor of success.â€
Mike Noriega started off the evening for God’s Gladiators taking the first place medal in his division to pump up the tempo of his team. Followed by Noriega, Jake Cordero finished third in his division proving his hard work paid off by allowing him to progress so far in the tournament.
Eager to win a medal of his own, Brandon Emmet took to the mat for his time in the spotlight.This new Christian proved true in his training and managed to make it unanimous by claiming the third place bronze for himself in his fighting division.
â€œThis guy was a lot bigger than I was, but with the training and guidance from Coach Marcus, I was able to utilize my training to get the better of my opponent,â€ Emmet said.
Now with a successful tournament under their belt, Navarro and the group will continue to train for their next competition.
Navarro as not only proved to be a good coach and mentor to his team from God’s Gladiators, but later commented that he is hoping to start a women’s self-defense class in the future.
â€œI would also like people to know that despite the success our team has had, we hope to better ourselves and become a team to pick each other up, and we would all like to give this success to God through prayers of thanks for allowing us to achieve our dreams in life,â€ said Navarro.