Fifteen competitors of the Yorkton TaeKwonDo club participated in the provincial championships March 31 at the Turvey Centre in Regina. The event was hosted by Kim's TaeKwonDo.
There were over 160 competitors from all over Saskatchewan. Master Wayne Mitchell of Kee's TaeKwonDo in Yorkton as well as Autumn Ashcroft and Frances Bazin were all coaches of the Yorkton team. Andrew Bazin was selected as a referee for the day's events, explains Master Mitchell in a press release.
There were many significant performances that weekend. In the colour belt Pee Wee advanced belts were embroiled into many matches. Daniel Bazin and Zane Chopik had a particularly strong division. They showed great determination and persistence that resulted in a silver medal for Chopik and a bronze for Bazin.
Tyler Buenneke dominated his division by outscoring his opponents over three matches by almost a 10-1 margin. For his young age, he is showing a great understanding of the strategy of the game. His ability to score difficult techniques with both left and right feet will make him a force to be reckoned with as he moves up through the ranks and the age levels. Buenneke placed with a gold medal in both the sparring and the pattern division. Kallie Buenneke also had a two-medal performance. She easily outscored her opponents for a gold medal finish in sparring as well as a bronze medal in the pattern division. Ashley Buenneke also had a stellar performance in the girls midget advanced patters and was awarded a silver medal. Local performances in the black belt division were for Shane Varjassy, Samuel Lohnes and sister Kathryn Lohnes.She had four fights and won gold in sparring.
"It was a small tournament," she said. "They were a lot lighter than I was.
Kathryn, currently in her first year of the junior 'A' division, took on a full workload, fighting in four matches, including some against adults, notes Master Mitchell.
She went up against a senior from Regina named Alisha Triff in two sudden death matches and Lohnes finished with a gold medal in sparring, says Master Mitchell.
Lohnes declined to speak negatively about her opponent but noted that she had been told her opponent is "a lot slower".
"We are a lot different," she said of both of their fighting styles.
"We're two different fighting styles."
Lohnes modestly admitted she "was not expecting to win it."
Samuel said he "had a lot more experience" to draw upon when he took centre stage. He only had one fight but made the most of it en route to a gold.
"I was just expecting a good fight. I'm proud."
He added that he puts in a fair bit of training into his art and it definitely showed in Queen City that day.
"I train really hard."
He spends upwards of 10 hours a week at it.
Next up for both he and Kathryn are both getting ready for the Iron Fist Challenge which will take them all down to Manitoba on May 26.
"When it comes I'll be ready," he advises.
Varjassy used a system of well-placed power techniques to end his gold medal match early in the first round, says Master Mitchell.
Samuel Lohnes used his longer legs to his advantage, recalls Mitchell, and outscored his opponent as well. Complete results from the provincials are listed by name, category, and finish. Kathryn Lohnes, Jr A black belt welter, sparring-gold medal; Shane Varjassy, Jr A black belt feather, sparring-gold medal; Samuel Lohnes, Jr A black belt welter, sparring-gold medal; Francis Bazin, Sr black belt middle weight, sparring-gold medal; Clark Bazin, Jr A black belt heavy, sparring-gold medal; Eric Fookes, junior A black belt feather, sparring-bronze; Ashley Buenneke, midget-girls advanced, patterns-silver; Tyler Buenneke, Pee Wee boys middle advanced, sparring-gold medal, patterns-gold medal; Zane Chopik, Pee Wee boys light advanced, sparring-silver medal, patterns-gold medal; Daniel Bazin, Pee Wee boys light advanced, sparring-bronze medal; Kallie Buenneke, Pee Wee girls light intermediate, sparring-silver medal, patterns-bronze medal; Evan Hall, Pee Wee boys light beginner, sparring and patterns-bronze medal; Janaya Head, Pee Wee girls light beginner, sparring-silver medal; Nathan Head midget boys light beginner, sparring-gold medal, patterns-bronze medal; Josiah Head, midget boys middle beginner, sparring-gold medal, patterns-bronze medal.