• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 37s

Soldiers compete in hand-to-hand combat tournament

By Bonney Bowman 8:05 PM June 4, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

Soldiers on the battlefield have to be ready to fight for their lives, whether it’s with weapons or their bare hands.

Wednesday, the best fighters in the U.S. Army Alaska went head-to-head – or rather, hand-to-hand – as they battled for first place in this year’s combative tournament.

It’s a display of strength and power and for one soldier, a chance to stand out.

Capt. Kimberly DeFiori won three matches and is ready for her fourth.

“I just enjoy it. It’s really practical, just being a soldier and being an MP so it really transitions well and keeps that competitive spirit,” DeFiori said.

She’s the only woman fighting in the finals and her opponent is a man, but DeFiori sees it as good practice.

“You can’t make that decision in Afghanistan or Iraq so you may as well learn how to deal with it here,” DeFiori said.

Tournament organizers say they teach mixed martial arts style fighting so soldiers are ready for combat.

In today’s war zones, the enemy can get close before soldiers realize who they are.

“If they’re close and you have a weapon, they control the weapon just as much as you do. Then you have to resort to hand to hand combat,” said Staff Sgt. Stewart Tignor, the tournament’s director.

It may not be a weapon they have to use often, but it’s one they need to have in their arsenal.

“No matter what your job is, no matter what your MOS may be or your daily life, you’re still a solider and you’re trained as a soldier to close and destroy the enemy,” Tignor said.

The soldiers battle with kicks, punches and takedowns. It’s combat in the octagonal ring.

Here, it’s not life or death, but winning is incentive enough.

DeFiori placed fourth in the lightweight division. That’s fourth in the whole US Army Alaska.

First place finishers get bragging rights and a medal.

 

Latest Stories

  • On-Air

    Teacher of the Week: John Bruce

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 24, 10:37

    You wouldn’t consider these seventh-grade algebra students football fanatics. But you can bet they know who the defending Super Bowl champions are. In a way, Seattle Seahawks fan John Bruce is like coach in the classroom, teaching his students ways to use math in the real world. “Kids always ask you, ‘why are we doing […]

  • News

    Hawaii and Alaska pay more for Thanksgiving feasts

    by Associated Press on Nov 24, 8:57

    Residents of Hawaii pay the highest prices in the nation for their tasty birds and fixings on Thanksgiving, and Alaska feasts are almost as expensive. That’s according to an analysis by the personal finance website NerdWallet. Most food has to be flown or shipped into both states. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports (http://goo.gl/6HhPO2) that Hilo and […]

  • Sports

    UAA rebounds with a 4-0 win against Northern Michigan

    by KTVA Sports on Nov 24, 8:12

    It should be a happy Thanksgiving for the UAA hockey team after a victory over the Northern Michigan Wildcats over the weekend.

  • Sports

    UAA teams gain momentum ahead of Great Alaska Shootout

    by KTVA Sports on Nov 24, 8:04

    As the Great Alaska Shootout approaches, the UAA men’s and women’s basketball teams are headed in the right direction. The tournament, which kicks off Tuesday, will be held at the Alaska Airlines Center.

  • Weather

    Daybreak weather, Nov. 24

    by Brett Shepard on Nov 24, 7:50

    Mostly cloudy skies today with a few showers over the Kenai Peninsula and Prince William Sound. In the Southeast skies will be cloudy with rain at times. In the Interior skies will be cloudy. On the North Slope there will be mostly to partly cloudy skies with flurries and fog. Out West skies will be […]

  • News

    Geothermal energy at Pilgrim Hot Springs could help Nome’s costly power problem

    by Alexis Fernandez on Nov 24, 7:33

    Alaska’s oil boom days may be more numbered than we realize. Because of this, a popular hot springs near Nome is hoping to tap into an underground heat source to help solve its rising electricity costs. The site is located on the outskirts of Nome, about 60 miles away in a valley surrounded by mountains. “It’s […]

  • Lifestyle

    Photo Gallery: Dall sheep along Seward Highway

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 24, 7:11

  • News

    Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel resigning

    by CBS News on Nov 24, 7:06

    Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is resigning, CBS News National Security Correspondent David Martin has learned, and will leave his position after less than two years at the helm of the Defense Department. A senior defense official told Martin the resignation is a “mutual decision” between Hagel and President Obama that has been under discussion for […]