Erika Mihalca Promoted to Shodan
Erika Mihalca began Judo in November of 2007. She was a quick learner and became skillfull in Judo within months of beginning Judo. In January just 2 months after starting Judo she took 1st place in our Club tournament and then at the first major tournament, the San Jose Buddhist tournament she came in 2nd place just 3 months later. The first year, 2008, she competed at most all of the tournaments taking home 4 first and 2 second and 3 third place finishes by November. In December of 2008 just one year after beginning Judo she competed in her first of many National tournament, the Winter Nationals where she took 1st place. She would go no to win 1st place in several more Winter National Tournament.
For the next 3 years Erika continued to do well in most of the local tournaments taking numerous 1st place awards as well as the CJI State Championship. The most notable was taking 1st in the United States Junior National in 2009 which was just the beginning of her National tournament accomplishments.
In 2011-2012 tournament year that begins in September, Erika takes 1st place in almost every local tournaments, and began competing in the Black Belt/IJF division where she took 2nd place at the San Jose Buddhist Invitational.
Her next major competition was the Presidential Cup where she took 1st place in her division and then 3rd in the IJF division. Next tournament was the USJA/USJF Jr. Nationals where again she took 1st place. This moved her into into the #2 standing in IJF National standing for under 63kg division. Her next accomplishment was the Junior Olympics in Texas where she took 2nd place in both in the regular division and IJF division. This secured here standing as #2 in National standings for under 63kg division. Because of injury she was unable to compete in the US Open that year, but remained in the #2 standing in her division.
Erika also attended the Sensei Keiko Fukuda’s Joshi Camp and Camp Bushido for several years where she continued to impress the instructors and attendees of both Judo camps. In 2013 she was voted as one of the top Judoka participants of Camp Bushido.
Erika was humble when asked if she should be promoted to Black Belt. Although Erika’s tournament accomplishments were so extensive, she felt she was not ready to become a Black Belt.
Erika agreed to be tested for her promotion to Shodan, Black Belt in November of 2013 where she was unanimously approved and officially promoted by Central Cost Yudanshakai, of United States Judo Federation.