Sports Bag: Island Jiu-Jitsu School Wins Gold, Wins Boxing, and More

Staten Island’s Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu at West Brighton may be less than a year old, but the martial arts school made big waves at the Grappling Industries tournament on Saturday at the Showboat Casino in Atlantic City , finishing first among 80 schools from across the Northeast. .

The school won four gold, seven silver and four bronze medals in the competition. Add to that the total points of the other competitors and Staten Island Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu found themselves at the top of the pack.

“I feel like a proud dad,” said Joe Peteroy, one of the school’s coaches and co-owners. The other two are Mark Fileccia and Marcio Bittencourt, two guys who have been practicing martial arts for years. “I pushed these guys really hard with 10-minute rounds. We’re very competitive. I want to see these guys succeed.

The reason for the school’s success at this tournament?

“We were in better shape than our opponents,” said Peteroy. “We went there to take the first ones. We wanted to put Staten Island on the map. (Other parts of town) have really established themselves in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, but Staten Island really hasn’t had that success. There really hasn’t been much consistency here.

Until now, however!

“We want to keep winning and grinding,” Peteroy said. “I think we really hit a demographic in Staten Island of people who just want to compete and work hard. We’re not into bullying or anything, just hard work and improving our students.

Some Staten Island Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu members pose with their winnings from Saturday’s tournament. (Photo courtesy of Christine Albano)

The gold medal winning performance was made all the more enjoyable considering that Peteroy had to undergo emergency surgery the day before and couldn’t be there in person. To boot, Fileccia was recovering from recent ACL surgery, forcing trainer Bobby Brown to replace them both and the contestants excelled under Brown’s tutelage.

The day before the competition, Peteroy was working on his phone, calling some of his students to give them a personal pep talk and encouragement.

After the school won gold, his students timed it to let them know they had won. It was an emotional call, to say the least.

“I shed a few tears,” admitted Peteroy.

Two highlights of the event were bronze and silver medals for Tyler Rivera and Dan Argenzio, respectively.

“Tyler was down 10 points with about 20 seconds left when he received a submission,” Peteroy explained. “It’s just a testament to how hard he trained.”

As for Argencio, “we pushed him so hard that he opened the door and threw up, then came back and won four of his five games.”

The list of medal-winning competitors:

(Editor’s Note: Gi means when contestants are wearing a uniform, you can gran and even choke on it. No-Gi means a contestant is wearing tight-fitting clothes and you can’t grab the uniform , a bit like wrestling)

Lorenzo Soto: Adult, 135 lbs, Gi: 1st

Stanley Joseph: Adult, 145 lbs, Gi: 1st and No-Gi 2nd

Aidan Capasso: Teen 135 pounds, No-Gi: 1st and Gi: 2nd

Diego Oquendo: (30 years and over) 185 lbs without GI: 1st

Maria Demiro, teen, 105 lbs, No-Gi: 2nd

Daniel Argenzio, Adult 155 lbs, No-Gi: 2nd

Ronnell Fish: Adult 135 lbs Gi: 2nd and No-Gi: 2nd

Michael Mariano: Teen, 155 lbs, No-Gi: 2nd

Tyler Rivera: Adult, 135 lbs, No-Gi: 3rd

Nigel Walters: (30 years and over) 200 lbs, GI: 3rd and No-Gi: 3rd

Rich Velluzzi: (30+) 215 lbs No-Gi: 3rd


The school opened in Westerleigh last October but soon outgrew its original facilities and moved to West Brighton at 1230 Castleton Ave.

The motto of the gymnasium Train hard, fight easy is backed by the fact that its “instructors bring decades of mixed martial arts and Brazilian jiu-jitsu experience into the hands of our students. We provide them with the tools to successfully achieve their goals. Build fighters, build confidence, build a healthy lifestyle.

Staten Island Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Staten Island Brazilian student Michael Albano, left, puts a big maneuver on an opponent. (Photo courtesy of Christine Albano)

In addition to Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, other specialized martial arts in the school are kickboxing and Muay Thai.

The school currently trains 130 students. They have teen classes, adult classes, and are looking to have all-female classes.

Interested fighters can email [email protected] or call 917-873-3503.

These boxers are golden

From left to right are trainer Lou Manfra, boxing champions Enrique Garcia, Nihad Demiri, Carmine Gentile and trainer Pat Basciano. (Photo courtesy of Berry Houses NYC Cops & Kids Gym)

Three islanders win boxing crowns

Congratulations to Enrique Garcia (elite 139-pound champion), Nihad Demiri (novice 165-pound champion) and Carmine Gentile (junior 138-pound champion) for winning crowns at the USA Boxing New York Tournament last week.

All three fighters hail from Berry Houses NYC Cops & Kids Gym and are trained by Lou Manfra and Pat Basciano.

Do you have any good sports news? send it to us

The Gym Bag is published on the web Wednesdays and will appear in the Staten Island Advance shortly thereafter. This is where we will feature short stories, tidbits and chunks about your players or teams going forward instead of the daily game results we used to take.

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