Grande, Mosure, Virk, Marchand Among Those Securing Gold Medal Match Slots

Day one of the 2019 Canadian National Amateur Championships is in the books in Lethbridge, Alta.

Current IMMAF welterweight world champion Jett Grande (now 12-0) picked up right where he left off in his championship match in November, taking a dominant unanimous decision win over Robert Kovacevic (now 1-2).

Grande said it was a fun fight to be a part of and was happy with his performance overall, other than a couple technical aspects.

Jett Grande
Jett Grande works his ground and pound on Robert Kovacevic on day one of the 2019 Canadian National Amateur Championships. (Photo by Joel Griffith)

“I probably could’ve postured up a little better and landed a little more ground and pound,” said Grande.

“Maybe next time, instead of smothering him so much, I need to give him a little more room to play with so he’ll scramble and make mistakes, and I can capitalize.”

Grande will now receive a bye into Friday’s gold medal match where he’ll face the winner of Thursday’s semi-final between Ramil Kamilov (4-1) and Blake McVittie (1-1).

He said he’ll be in attendance to get a closer look at his potential opponents, but said he has no preference as to who he faces in the final match.

“I’ll fight either one of them. I think they’re both really tough guys,” said Grande.

“I know Ramil’s got really good striking, really good all-around game, and trains really seriously. And I know Blake’s got really sharp, explosive striking. Both guys will be good opponents.”

Mosure Motivated

Mark Mosure (now 5-1) also advanced to Friday’s middleweight gold medal match with a quick first round knockout of Ryan O’Connor (now 1-4).

Mosure will now face Dylan Schellenberg (3-4) in the finals, who he said he’s expecting to be a tough, well-rounded test.

“He looks like a really legit grappler, so I’ll just watch out for that and go out there and do my thing,” said Mosure.

“He looks like a big, strong dude too for 185 pounds, so it should be fun.”

Virk Impressive

Indroop Virk (now 5-0) showed why he’s the top-ranked bantamweight in Canada, taking a dominant third round submission win over Justin Grey (now 1-5) in the featherweight division.

Virk will now receive a bye into Friday’s gold medal match, which he said he’s all for.

Indroop Virk
Indroop Virk enters the cage for his day one bout at the 2019 Canadian National Amateur Championships. (Photo by Joel Griffith)

“I feel great about it. Being able to take a day off from the fight camp is perfect,” said Virk.

Virk will face the winner of the semi-final between Peter Janssen (3-3) and Walter Barrios (3-1).

He said he was able to watch a portion of both Janssen’s and Barrios’ quarterfinal matches, and will also be attending their semi-final match for a little more scouting.

“Whoever I fight, I know it’s going to be a tough fight, but I think I’m going to pull it off either way.”

Marchand Overcomes Bizarre Scenario

In the lone women’s bantamweight semi-final, Rylie Marchand (now 2-0) came out victorious after an impressive first round submission of Jessica Pfeifle (now 0-1) and will advance to take on Meghan Boyczuk (1-1) in the gold medal match.

Marchand’s victory came with a little scare, however, as there was a miscommunication between the commission and her coach, which led to her thinking she was fighting on Friday instead. She woke up from a nap to a bunch of missed phone calls to let her know she was next to fight. But she said everyone was very accommodating and helpful through what was a hectic time.

Rylie Marchand
Rylie Marchand in action on day one of the 2019 Canadian National Amateur Championships. (Photo by Joel Griffith)

“There was definitely some frustration heading to the venue, but as a fighter there are times that you know you just have to go out there and do it,” said Marchand.

“As soon as I stepped in the cage, I was on and ready to go.”

Marchand will now get a day’s rest to recoup from her hectic ordeal leading into this bout, and said she also has family members making the trip to watch her compete in Friday’s match.

“It feels good. I’m happy to get the day in between matches for some rest time,” said Marchand.

“It’s exciting to be in the finals, but it’s also just another fight at the same time.”

Eric Stevens, Will Grieve, Jenna Briltz will also be competing in Friday’s gold medal matches, while Andrew Mavridis, Steven Thomas, and Aaron Anctil will be in action for Thursday’s semi-finals.

Fight recap brought to you by Peppermint Hippo Tattoos.