It’s been another great year for consistent growth in MMA, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Submission Grappling in 2013.
For us here at TXMMA.com (Texas Mixed Martial Arts), we’ve taken great joy in working, being there and watching our sport grow. It seems like with each passing year we only continue to evolve and become even larger and more competitive as a group here in the lone star state and we’re honored to be your primary source in reporting and covering all to it.
As we’ve done every year since 2011 we’ve put together our Annual TXMMA Awards in order to recognize outstanding achievers and those that continue to receive a massive amount of support for their competitive exploits.
Our process relating to these awards continues to evolve but our goal as always is to have the most fair, logical and consistent system possible is it relates to everyone we recognize. This includes an internal election process taking statistical evidence as the primary factor in placing our winners along with a
People’s Choice piece recognizing some of the best by virtue of popular vote. We like to have both and feel they both represent a great honor and a nod to achievement.
Now without further adieu we present to you our 2013 TXMMA Award Official Winners for BJJ and Submission Grappling.
2013 TXMMA Awards – Official Results (BJJ Edition)
Official TXMMA Awards – Texas Academy of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Alvarez Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
Winner Stats: Well over 50 IBJJF Medals as a team, 1st place at Newbreed, IBJJF Dallas Open (122 of 243 for NU), F2W Torque Open, DFW Matshark, F2W Europa, etc. 8 1st place finishes and 10 podium finishes overall as a team.
Official 2013 TXMMA Awards–Texas Association of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Gracie Barra (Vinicius Magalhaes)
Runners-up: Nova Uniao / Bruno Bastos JJ, Paragon Texas, SMAA
I would like to say that I am honored to receive that award from the biggest, better and more traditional Martial Arts website in the state of Texas. On behalf of Gracie Barra, we would like to thank that great media channel and the whole TX BJJ and Martial Arts community for that recognition. – Vinicius Draculinho Magalahes (Gracie Barra Texas)
Official TXMMA Awards – Adult Black Belt of the Year (M)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Carlos Diego Ferreira (Team Ferreira / Atos) Winner Stats: Grappling Games (1st, 1st), IBJJF Dallas (1st), Marshark (1st, 1st), AGF South Regionals (1st), IBJJF Vegas Open (1st), Gracie Grappling Cup (1st), UAEJJ World Pro Trials (1st), BJJ Classic Invitational (1st) Runners-up: Bruno Bastos (Bastos BJJ), Alex Martins (Paragon), Marcus Antelante (Soul Fighters), Robert Yamashita (Elite MMA Baytown)
Official TXMMA Awards – Masters Black Belt of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Daniel Alvarez (Alvarez BJJ) Winner Stats: IBJJF Masters/Seniors – 3rd, Miami – 1st, No Gi American Nationals – 1st, Vegas – 1st, Toronto – 1st, New York – 1st, European – 1st, Rome – 1st, Vegas Srping – 1st, Pan Ams – 3rd, etc.
Runners-up: Rodrigo Pinheiro (Gracie Humaita), Diego Gamonal Nogueira (BTT), Alex Martins (Paragon)
Official TXMMA Awards – Black Belt of the Year (F)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Fabiana Borges (Gracie Barra)
Runners-up: Sue Austin (Travis Lutter)
Official TXMMA Awards – Brown Belt of the Year (M)
I want to thank TX MMA for the recognition and honor you are giving to me today. It was an honor just to be nominated because there are allot of talented ladies in Texas and it’s getting better every year. I want to start out thanking God for the grace that he has given me. I want to thank my husband, Gary Felts, for his support and love. My family for believing in me and cheering me on in everything I do. (Even if they can’t say Jiu Jitsu correctly, and I think most of them still think I do Karate) I want to thank my coach, Paul Halme, for his guidance, support and leadership. Without him and the gym he built I wouldn’t be the athlete I am today. I also want to thank my training coaches Juan Tatum and Philip Miller. These guys are the ones that work with me everyday and push me to become better and stronger then I was the day before. I want to thank all of my training partners at Peak Performance. Christan, Zantha, Marissa, Dan and allot of other guys and gals. Without them I wouldn’t have anyone to play with and jiu jitsu wouldn’t be any fun. Finally I want to thank and recognize some of those great women in the Jiu jitsu community. Without them I couldn’t be here today. Tara Arlington, Triin Seppel, Sue Ausmen, Pilar Foo, and Shama Ko. I love these ladies and I don’t know what I would do without them. I know there are about 50 more names I could list out, but I know your all tiered of reading so, Thank you to everyone. Without you I couldn’t be here today. – Kristine Felts
Official TXMMA Awards – Purple Belt of the Year (M)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Reed Shelger (GFTeam / Paradigm)
Winner Stats: IBJJF Worlds Master (1st), No-Gi Worlds (3rd), and the Pan Ams (2nd), IBJJF Houston (1st and 3rd), UAEJJ World Pro Trials (3rd), NAGA Houston (1st, 1st), Grand Prix Grappling (1st)
Runners-up: Jordan Burton III (GB Texas), Vin Abadie (Alvarez BJJ)
Thank you TXMMA and Mike Calimbas for the award for Purple-Belt of the Year. It is an extra special honor to be recognized by someone who has such appreciation and passion for the sport of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Thank you for the award and for the great work you do to support the BJJ community. I would also like to thank my coach, Igor Santos, and my training partners at Paradigm-GF Team: Thomas Mancha, Jason Gaskill, Joel McClain, Evan Giddeon (Galveston MMA-GF Team), and the rest of the crew. OSS! – Reed Shelger
Official TXMMA Awards – Purple Belt of the Year (F)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Danielle Alvarez (Alvarez BJJ)
Runners-up: Veronica Mota-Messina (Revolution Dojo), Lora Hallock (Paragon), Lana Hunter (Pinnacle GFTeam San Antonio), Kat Harrison (Trainer’s Elite)
Official TXMMA Awards – Blue Belt of the Year (M)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Jordan Shelper (Alvarez BJJ)
Runners-up: Cruz Ybarra Jr. (Soul Fighters), Michael Esquivel II (Paragon)
Official TXMMA Awards – Blue Belt of the Year (F)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Natalia Biasca-Shelper (Alvarez BJJ)
Runners-up: Victória Maciel Cáceres (Soul Fighters), Chasity De Leon Villarreal (Revolution), Audrey Drew (Mezger/KGBJJ), Karen Lingle Kovach (F3)
Official TXMMA Awards – White Belt of the Year (M)
2013 Award Recipient: Jarrod Trotter (NDBJJ)
Runners-up: Ryan Escobar (Revolution Dojo), Chad Lutu (Pinnacle GFTeam San Antonio), Marshall Cevallos (Elite MMA Baytown)
I would like to take the opportunity thank TXMMA for awarding me with the honors of TX White Belt of the year. It is truly an honor to receive this award. Thanks to all the people that voted for me. I really appreciate the vote of confidence from the BJJ community. I did not accomplish this alone. I thank my Coach JD Shelley for giving me an opportunity to learn this great art and my teammates at North Dallas BJJ for pushing me and believing in me. I would not be a success without the support of everyone involved. – Jarrod Trotter
Official TXMMA Awards – White Belt of the Year (F)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Makenzie Nunnally (Lutter)
Runners-up: Miriam Villar (Alvarez), Laura Heiman (Paragon)
Thank you to everyone who voted for me! This is such an honor! I could not have done it without my amazing team standing behind me my amazing coaches helping me every step of the way and my father for taking me to all of my tournaments and sticking by me through all the of the pre tournament stress. I didn’t get my acceptance video in in time but I want everyone to know how grateful I am. Thank you again! – Makenzie Nunnally
Official TXMMA Awards – Teen Grappler of the Year (M)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Andy Cordova (GB Texas)
Runners-up: Matt Hernandez (Paragon Texas), Justin Rebolloso (Alvarez BJJ)
Official TXMMA Awards – Teen Grappler of the Year (F)
2013 Award Recipient: Kayla Deleon (BJJ Revolution)
Hi this is Kayla De Leon. I would like to thank you all for those who voted for me. I would also like to thank my friends and family. I look up to my sisters Chasity & Ashley De Leon. They help me to be a better grappler, stronger competitor, & a part of who I am today. Winning this award means alot to me and my team Bjj Revolution. Jeff Messina is a great instructor & I enjoy training with him. One more person who has been a great supporter is my dad. He pushes me hard and makes sure I am prepared for a tournament. From the pushups to the running and training, all of it has been worth the pain and sweat to achieve my goals. Thank you all so much again. I will continue to push & train in the sport of jiu-jitsu for it is something that I live for. – Kayla Deleon
Official TXMMA Awards – Kids Grappler of the Year (M)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Isaih Calderon (AOJ)
Winner Stats: IBJJF Kids Pans (1st), Naga Las Vegas (1st, 1st), Louisiana State Championship (1st), Austin Open (1st, 1st), Matshark (1st, 1st), Grappler’s Quest Vegas (1st, 1st), Kids Worlds (1st, 1st), Abu Dhabi Trials (2nd), Dream (1st), etc.
Lives in Katy, Texas most of the year but spends the summer, weekends, and holidays in Costa Mesa, CA training with AOJ.
Thank you for the TXMMA “Kid’s male grappler of the year” award. I’ve worked hard this year traveling much of the country competing in five states & many matches. Everyone on the list are winners and it feels great to be recognized. I want to thank a lot of people starting in Texas; Many thanks to Mike Castro, Coach Zach Roberson, & Coach Grant Johnson. Thanks to my sponsors killerbeegi.com & mendesbros.com. I especially want to thank my Professors and brothers Gui & Rafa Mendes. They are important to my development. They both make sacrifice and make it possible for me to train there with them. I just want the opportunity to have fun, show my jiu-jitsu, and to represent all of my AOJ family whenever I can. – Isaih F. Calderon
Official TXMMA Awards – Kids Grappler of the Year (F)
► 2013 Award Recipient: Cora Sek (Team Tooke)
Runners-up: Jessica Crane (Alvarez BJJ)
Official TXMMA Awards – Which is your choice for Men’s Gi Match of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Robert Yamashita vs. Rico Bastos (BJJ Classic)
Runners-up: Albert Hughes vs. Leo Iturralde (IBJJF Dallas Open), Rafael Lovato Jr. vs. Rico Bastos (IBJJF Houston Open, Carlos Diego Ferreira vs. Alex Martins (Gracie Grappling Cup)
Official TXMMA Awards – Which is your choice for Men’s No Gi Match of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Julian Vega vs. Frederico Silva (2013 Austin Open)
Runners-up: Chris Brennan vs. Toby Imada (2013 Austin Open), Colton Smith vs. Carlos Diego Ferreira (AGF Southern Regionals 2013)
Official TXMMA Awards – Which is your choice for Women’s Match of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Tessa Simpson vs. Lana Hunter ( Matshark TX State Championship)
Runners-up: Kayla De Leon vs. Julie Rodriguez (NAGA Texas), Julia Ottolino vs. Chastity Villareal (2013 Austin Open), Fabiana Borges vs. Mackenzie Dern (2013 IBJJF Dallas Open)
Thank you TXMMA as well as everyone who voted for us during the community awards for female match of the year! Thanks to Rafael at Matshark for putting together those brackets and giving us the opportunity to compete locally, so we can better our skills for competition on a national level. Finally, thanks to Lana for a great match! – Tessa Simpson
Official TXMMA Awards – Which is your choice for Kids/Teens Match of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Justin Rebolloso vs. Matt Hernandez (Matshark SA) Runners-up: Brenna Tromble vs. Keegan Swindell (BJJ Classic), Justin Rebolloso vs. Xavier Urias (UAEJJ San Antonio Trials 2013)
Official TXMMA Awards – Which is your choice for (M) TXMMA Submission of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Cody Williams – armbar on Brandon Mullins (NAGA)
Runners-up: Carlos Diego Ferreira – standing wristlock on Albert Hughes (BJJ Classic)
Shock … initial reaction when hearing I won submission of the year when the names that were in the category. I’m going to compete in more grappling tournaments through 2014. Thanks to all who support me in my career on the mat and in the cage. My gratitude as always to those who are working behind the scenes at TXMMA.com to give the athletes a platform for exposure and notoriety, my Jiu-Jitsu mentors and coaches Don Murphy, Greg Diaz, & Martin Walker of American Top Team Beaumont, TX & Alan Belcher & Michael Sanford of ABMMA in Mississippi. And the man that made it all possible, Mike Berryhill (Owner ATT BMT). – Cody Williams
Official TXMMA Awards – Which is your choice for (F) TXMMA Submission of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Sarah Boyd – flying triangle on Gabi Mueller (Matshark)
Runners-up: Kayla De Leon – anaconda choke on Julie Rodriguez (GPG), Julia Ottolino – armbar on Gabi Mueller (Europa)
Official TXMMA Awards – Texas Ironman of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Daniel Alvarez (Alvarez BJJ)
Runners-up: Carlos Diego Ferreira (Team Ferreira / Atos), Jarrod Clontz (AFC / SMAA)
Official TXMMA Awards – Texas Ironwoman of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Danielle Alvarez (Alvarez BJJ)
Runners-up: Miriam Villar (Alvarez BJJ), Lora Hallock (Paragon Texas)
Official TXMMA Awards – Referee of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Brandon Quick
Runners-up: The field
Official TXMMA Awards – Seminar of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: Nova Uniao Super Seminar
Runners-up: The Field
Official TXMMA Awards – Texas BJJ Brand of the Year
► 2013 Award Recipient: War Tribe Gear
Runners-up: Gameness, Fear Tapping Out, Dom Fight Gear
Official TXMMA Awards – Texas BJJ Sponsor of the Year
Official TXMMA Awards – Inspiring Grapplers of the Year
► 2013 TXMMA Awards Recognition
Jarrod Clontz – always at tournament coaching, competing and working as a ref. Never missed a beat.
Christopher Weinandt – a sensation in 2013, inspiring many people by training and competing in BJJ over the age of 60.
Daniel Alvarez – Competing and representing Texas all over the world.
Carlos Diego Ferreira – Traveling to compete at Worlds to compete with the best in the world the morning after fighting and beating a UFC veteran on national TV.
Official TXMMA Awards –Tournaments of the Year
The below tournaments are the ones we currently support as part of our TXMMA tournament season.
► 2013 TXMMA Awards Recognition
World Grappling Circuit / Fight to Win
American Grappling Federation
American Grappling Federation
Grand Prix Grappling
Gracie Grappling Cup
Official TXMMA Awards – the 2013 Community Service Award
► 2013 Award Recipient: Girls in Gis
Runners-up: The Field
Words can’t describe how honored we are to have won the 2013 TXMMA Fan’s Choice and Official TXMMA Community Service Award. Thank you all that voted for us! We deeply appreciate your continued support and we wouldn’t be able to do what we do if not for each and everyone in the BJJ community in Texas and as a whole. This is an honor we share with all of you. Thank you for your support and believing in the cause. Thank you to all the academies and hosts since 2009. Thank you to all of our valued sponsors for making this all possible and for helping us to expand. Thank you to our founder Ashley Freeman Nguyen. She had a vision and created a solid foundation for us to grow from; something that has touched the lives of so many and sprouted a sisterhood. Thank you also to Shama Ko for leading the charge and running with it. Thank you also to our Colorado chapter captain Milly Malloy for all that she has done for the Girls in Gis in Colorado and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu community. Thank you to our biggest supporters and for their contribution to Girls in Gis. Last but not least thank you to all of the amazing girls of Girls in Gis. You are the heart and soul of Girls in Gis and together we can do anything! Best part is, we are just getting started!!! Thank you TXMMA and everyone that voted for Girls in Gis!
Official TXMMA Awards –Lifetime Achievement / TXMMA Hall of Fame
► 2013 Award Recipient: Pat “Hawk” Hardy
Runners-up: The Field
To the Staff of TXMMA.com: I would like to formally accept this very prestigious award that has been given me by both the Popular Vote & by the TXMMA Panel. To say I am thrilled is a understatement! I have thanked many for this Honor already,but I’d like to Thank once more all my students at the TPC, Royce , Rorion, Rener, & Ryron Gracie, all the people in this State who have worked , fought, & won alongside me putting Texas on the map in MMA & GJJ/BJJ. This award to me is right up there with being the first person ever given a Black Belt by Royce Gracie! It means that much to me! Thank you all! – Pat “Hawk” Hardy