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Folding Mountain Taekwondo continues golden groove

Masha Scheele

Folding Mountain Taekwondo competitors locked in seven gold medals throughout the past two tournaments.

Caylee Hunter, Jeffery Smeall and Jessica Smeall attended the Chun’s 50th Anniversary Tournament in Edmonton on Feb. 15.

Hunter,  a 10-year-old red belt, has been dominating her division this year and continued her run of gold medal performances in both sparring and poomsae.

“She trains hard and is very determined,” said Master Bill McLaughlin, head instructor at Folding Mountain.

Hunter also took home two gold medals from the 30th Annual Whitecourt Taekwondo Championship in January.

Jeffery Smeall, an adult male red belt, didn’t place in poomsae but won a gold medal in sparring. 

The match was tied at the end of three rounds and went to a golden point match, similar to sudden-death overtime, where the first point wins, stated McLaughlin.

Jessica Smeall, adult female third dan black belt, won gold in individual sport poomsae with her best score ever of 7.2.

“Scores above seven are the norm to win in international competition, so this is a huge improvement,” said McLaughlin.

The last tournament for the club prior to provincials took place in Westlock on Feb. 29.

Since the tournament was not a provincial point tournament, there was no sport poomsae.

Jeffery Smeall took home silver in both regular competition poomsae and sparring, while Jessica Smeall got another gold medal in regular competition poomsae.

The two of them also competed as a pair in poomsae, winning another gold.

Fifteen-year-old Ashleigh Buck, who is a second dan black belt, also won Gold in her first ever tournament. McLaughlin stated that Buck has been training an extra two days per week with aspirations of competing in individual sport poomsae at provincials in May.