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Pittsburgh Area Martial Artists Win Gold.

Detroit, MI – June 9, 2024 – The World Karate and Kickboxing Commission (WKC) hosted the 2024 National Championships June 7-8th in Detroit, Michigan at the University of Michigan – Dearborn.  The weeklong event hosted the nation’s best in WKC Tatami-style martial arts competition.  Pittsburgh based Allegheny Shotokan “Viola” Karate Dojo traveled with thirteen of their top students with hopes of making the US Team.   Competitors who medal (top 4) in their divisions earn a sport on Team USA and punch their ticket for the World Championships in Portugal this fall.  Sensei Viola’s “Team Kumite” qualified all attending members, making them the largest group form a single dojo to make the United States Team. Sensei (coach) Bill Viola Jr. said, “We have consistently had strong representation at nationals, but this is the first time that every student was able to earn a spot on Team USA.  We are so blessed to have such a talented group of athletes and supportive parents.”

The US Team is comprised of elite athletes from across the country who win the National Team trials and earn a position to represent the United States at the World Championships.  Medaling for Team USA representing Western Pennsylvania:

Pictured Left to right:

  • Cameron Klos
  • Gavin Bilinsky
  • Dryce Davis
  • Noelle Kravetz
  • Riley Evans
  • Aiden Johnson
  • Carter Griffith
  • Sammy Pietrzyk
  • Gabby Viola
  • Xander Eddy
  • Gabby Viola
  • Daniel Barrett
  • Not pictured:
  • Carter Crawford
  • Remmington Whatule

WKC Nationals

The 2024 WKC World Championships will be held Albufeira, Portugal October 26 – November 1st. In addition to Portugal, the team will be represented by Gabby Viola, Xander Eddy, Carter Griffith and Riley Evans at the WAKO (World Association of Kickboxing Organizations) Jr. Kickboxing while in Budapest, Hungary (August), while Daniel Barret earned a spot on The USA Kickboxing Sr. Team that competes in Vina del Mar, Chile for the Pan-American WAKO Championships.

WKC PortugalSensei (coach) Bill Viola Jr. said, “We have a very busy and exciting opportunity with our students headed to Portugal, Hungary, and Chile. These students are on an Olympic path, and are role models for young people in our community.  They are now in fight camp, which requires a 7-day a week training commitment.”  USA Kickboxing is the only U.S. organization in the sport of kickboxing to have IOC (International Olympic Committee) & AOC (American Olympic Committee) recognition. WAKO USA serves as the gateway to the Olympics, and Sensei Bill Viola is the Chairman for Tatami sports nationwide. The World Association of Kickboxing Organizations (WAKO) the National Governing Body for the sport under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee.

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Team Kumite - Professional Sport Karate Team

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