Red Oak High School ninth grader Sarah Stallings,has won a coveted slot on the U.S. A. Junior Karate Team. Along with four teammates from Champion Karate Academy (Team CKA), Sarah will participate in the XXVIII Junior Pan American Karate Federation Championships. The prestigious international competition will be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Aug. 21-27.
Seven Texas karate athletes made the Junior Karate Team for ages 12-20 at the national competition in Greenville, S.C. in July. Five of these athletes are students of Champion Karate Academy in Irving. They are Suchit Ineni, Sampriti Ramakrishnan, Sarah Stallings, Aditi Mutagi, and Saisheren Senpon.
U. S. A. Karate Team, which represents the United States in competitions in other countries, consists of approximately 80 of the top karate athletes from ages 12 to adult. The Argentina junior competition will be divided between males and females. The three local girls will be members of Team Kata, while the boys will compete in Kumite (fighting).
Irving dojo Champion Karate Academy (CKA), founded 12 years ago by Senthil Thiyagarajan and co-founded by Ponmalar Senthil, sent 18 athletes to the National competition. CKA students brought home 22 medals – nine gold, seven silver, and six bronze—from the national competition.
CKA Founder Senthil Thiyagarajan said, “All five students have worked really hard over the years, especially during the last two months before the nationals, and have finally earned the incredible opportunity to represent the U.S. in the Junior National Team. For one athlete, it is the second time to represent Team USA. This cannot be achieved without the sincere, passionate and dedicated coaching from Team CKA coaches and incredible parents’ support. Winning a medal at this event is highly challenging for athletes. Only the top two athletes per division from the 42-member countries of Pan American Karate Federation are expected to compete.”
The two boys competing in the Kumite events will be Suchit Ineni, a student at Coppell Middle School West, and Saisheren Senpon, from Coppell High School. Competing on Team Kata along with Sarah Stallings from Red Oak High School are Adita Mutagi and Sampriti Ramakrishnan, Coppell High School.
The mission of Champion Karate Academy is “to make our students more successful in life through their practice of Karate-Do.” For more information call 469-249-8800 or visit www.championkarateacademy.com.