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Karate school kicks up a storm in competitions

Posted on Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at 11:47 pm

A new venue, more trophies and opportunities have left instructors at the  American Open Combat Karate School in Warsaw pleased to say the least. This comes after changes and success in two local competitions for the students of the martial arts.

At the King George Open earlier this year, Rayshawn Veney earned first place honors in weapons kata, and second in kata and sparring. He was followed by Kyra Jackson earning third place in weapons kata, second in sparring and fifth in kata.

Luke Jackson placed third in the open hand kata and fourth in sparring; Isaiah earned third place honors in sparring and fifth in kata; and Taylor Elliot

Pictured in the back row, from left Rensei Harry Hulbert, Gabrielle Johnson, Patricia Smith, Taylor Elliott, Rayshawn Veney, Sensi Kayla Donovan and Hansai Andrew Hudnall; middle row, from left, Lenia Carey, Kyra Jackson and Myles Dixson; bottom row, from left, Zane Jackson, Asher Jackson and Deangelo Dixson.

placed first in sparring, and third in weapons kata.

Matt Chatham and Veney took home first place honors for the group at the Battle of Seven Cities in Virginia Beach in the early part of the year.

Chatham won first place in the weapons kata, while Veney earned first place honors in sparring, second in weapons kata and third in the kata.

Elliot placed second in the weapons kata and third in the kata; Kyra Jackson earned second place honors in sparring; Luke Jackson placed second in sparring; and Shannon Chapman placed third in kata, weapons kata and sparring.

Hansai Andrew Hudnall was pleased for his students.

“The students did extremely well and for several of them it was their first tournament,” Hundall said. “It was pretty phenomenal for the numbers [20-25] we take to tournaments and we continue to place among the commercial schools which have 250 students.”

Earning individual honors is nothing new for the American Open Combat Karate School in Warsaw. In the school’s history there are three state champions and one national. Hudnall expects to be opening a women’s defense class in Warsaw instructed by black belt Velvet Stewart.

The school is also expected to appear in a book and future movie regarding the life and teachings of black belt and world champion grandmaster Victor Moore. The students fall underneath Moore and grandmaster Danny Wilson.

“He was very interested in our little school,” Hudnall said. “We showcased our moves and he was very pleased.”

Renshi Harry Hulbert is excited about the new changes for the students.

“Change is good,” Hulbert said. “The change means we’re doing something right and it’s for the better.”

Chandra Johnson, mother to Myles Dixson, said she is pleased with the work that is being done by the instructors, who also volunteer and travel from across the Commonwealth.

“They’re fantastic,” Johnson said. “These little ones are five and six years old and are up to orange belts because it takes focus and discipline.”

Visit the school online at or call 804-313-1040. They are located at 109 Main Street in Warsaw. Inside leading to Innovative Images Custom Signs and more.

Students are under the direction of fellow black belts Allen Chapman, Travis Kilman, Alessa Leming, Drew Mitchell, Melvin Stewart and Dan Wilson.