---- — LONDONDERRY — Moreau’s Training Center traveled Feb. 22 to the Ninth Annual UNH Wildcat Invitational Judo Tournament . Moreau’s had eight competitors eager for competition.
The day shaped up to be full of talented competitors. The tournament brought approximately 30 schools from the Northeast, from first-time competitors to national champions.
Starting the day for Moreau’s were first-time competitors Sharunas Fritschy and Matthew Soucy. The two boys fought in the lightweight division for ages 5 and 6. Both did well. Matthew was bumped out of medal contention by teammate Sharunas, who went on to win his first judo medal, are hard-earned bronze.
Teammates Jack Nadeau and Anthony Picarello competed in the middleweight division for ages 7 and 8. Both Anthony and Jack had a division filled with active veterans of the sport, and would have to prove their grit. Anthony finished with a bronze medal and teammate Jack finished in fourth.
Sophie Rench, no stranger to competition, stepped it up a notch on this day. Sophie, an 8-year-old third-grader at St. Thomas Aquinas in Derry, decided to put her skills to the test. Sophie fought in two divisions, the girls 7 and 8 and also the 9- and 10-year-old division. Sophie had flawless victories in her division and proved herself against the older girls, winning a bronze.
Tommy Moreau Jr. was the last to represent the Moreau’s junior team and had his work cut out for him. He competed in the advanced boys 11-12 open weight division. Tommy had hard-fought tactical matches on the day. His only loss was to the gold medal winner. Tommy earned a silver medal.
Chris Plourde was the first for the adult to compete from Moreau’s. Plourde fought in the men’s advanced 178-pound division. He had six matches on the day and fell only to Aaron Kumihiro. Kumihiro has been a topped ranked national competitor for several years, Plourde did well against him, but fell short of the gold. He finished with a silver medal.
Head coach and owner of Moreau’s Training Center Tom Moreau had his work cut out for him. Moreau was scheduled to fight in the men’s advanced open weight category. Moreau, the smallest of the division barely tipped the scales at 190 pounds, and was pitted against men ranging from 219 to 263 pounds.
Moreau competed well and did his best to set a good example for his students. Grinding out wins on the day, Moreau was to fight several-time national champion Aaron Hardy. Moreau, although scoring, fell short and had to accept the hard-earned silver medal.
Moreau’s Training Center is located at 501 Mammoth Road. For information, call Tom at 421-4732, or visit moreaustrainingcenter.com.