Southern Maryland Wrestling Club Wins
Junior (18 years & under) Team Title
at National Sombo Championships

Calvert Independent Article
March 31, 1986

Southern Maryland Wrestling Club (SMWC), which meets on Monday and Wednesday nights between 6:30 and 8:00 PM at Calvert High School, won the Junior (18 and under) Team Title at the US National Sombo Championships held March 29th at George Mason University.

Sombo is a self defense oriented style of jacket wrestling developed in the Soviet Union which incorporates both wrestling and judo maneuvers. The term sombo is an acronym for the Russian phrase "self defense without weapons". Sombo has been recognized by the International Amateur Wrestling Federation since 1968.

Teams from Great Britain and France, as well as several U.S. teams entered the National event. "Winning the junior team title at a national event our first try is a real plus for us" stated SMWC Coach Bruce Gabrielson of Dunkirk. "All the other summer wrestling teams we are going to run into will now be looking out for us, and some of our kids, especially Seth Blansford, will undoubtedly be seated high in local tournaments." "The prestige will also help our club recruiting next year, and should make our sponsor very happy."

A few team titles, especially in Sombo, are not quite as unexpected as one would think for this particular first full year club team. Tarin Gabrielson is the defending girls AAU National Sombo Champion, and her brother Jason placed 4th at 45 lbs. in GR at the Grand Nationals in Indianapolis last summer. Also, two other champions, Seth Blansford and Kalil Malick, are considered two of the best pre-high school wrestlers in Southern Maryland.

Next for SMWC is the Southern Maryland AAU Championships at Calvert HS on 26 April. The tournament will be the largest ever held in this area, with weigh-ins starting at 7:30 Saturday morning. The meet is the qualifier for the Region II AAU Championships in Richmond, and also the official qualifier for the high school all star team representing Southern Maryland in the Maryland Challenge Cup. Freestyle, Greco-Roman, and Sombo styles will be contested.

Individual SMWC Champions
National Sombo Championships

Sean Blansford Junior
Seth Blansford Junior
Jason Gabrielson Junior
Tarin Gabrielson Junior Girls
Kalil Malick Junior
Shaun Sallyards Junior
Bruce Gabrielson Masters

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