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    2020 ORARNG Best Warrior Competition

    2020 ORARNG Best Warrior Competition

    Photo By Spc. Dominic Trujillo | Nine soldiers competed in the 2020 Oregon Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition...... read more read more



    Story by Spc. Dominic Trujillo 

    115th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

    Nine Oregon Army National Guard Soldiers and noncommissioned officers (NCO) from across the state, competed in the 2020 Best Warrior Competition (BWC) to determine the top Soldier and NCO of the year on June 27 at Camp Withycombe in Clackamas, Oregon.
    The annual Best Warrior Competition is designed to demonstrate Soldiers’ technical and tactical proficiency in various tasks as well as general and historical military knowledge. In order to participate at the state-level competition, each Soldier first had to outperform their peers at the unit-level competition. This year’s competition set precedent by introducing the Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT) into the events as well as adhering to social distancing guidelines established due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
    Competitors from various units combined resources and skill sets in order to put on a series of events in order to test and determine the winners of the competition. Sgt. 1st Class Jedadia Powell, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment (HHD), 82nd Troop Command Brigade, was the noncommissioned officer in charge of this year’s competition.
    Powell said the competition was an opportunity for Soldiers to set themselves apart from their peers and competitors while staying motivated and showing a commitment to the Army core values.
    “These Soldiers were sought out by leadership and competed against their peers to earn the right to compete in today’s competition,” he said. “It has been great to see these Soldiers live the Army core values and to see the level of motivation they possess. It has been enjoyable to see their professionalism and camaraderie.”
    The Soldiers put their mental and physical abilities to the test and demonstrated their proficiency in each challenge during the competition.
    The event kicked off Saturday morning with the ACFT. Because this was the first time the ACFT was used in the BWC, it proved to be challenging for all of the competitors.
    “The ACFT was surprisingly tough,” said Staff Sgt. Kyle Pernula, Charlie Company, 141st Brigade Support Battalion. “BWC gave me an idea of what would be needed to pass the ACFT.”
    Another competitor Spc. Nathaniel Consiglio, HHD, 821 Troop Command Battalion, thought the ACFT was challenging as well. “The run, after doing the other parts of the ACFT, was especially tough because my legs were so tired,” Consiglio said. “I need to run more.”
    After being tested physically, the competitors changed into their Army dress uniform and reported to a formal board of three sergeants major in order to test their general and historical military knowledge. This was done in a closed-door session, one DFoldier at a time.
    “The boards were interesting and pretty tough,” said Sgt. Christian Woodman, Charlie Company, 2-162 Infantry, who would eventually win the competition for the NCO portion. “I am excited to bring the knowledge of the experience back to the unit now that I know what is expected from the competitors.“
    For Sgt. Adam Dryden, Charlie Troop, 1st Squadron, 82nd Cavalry Regiment, the board experience caught him by surprise, despite his confidence in his preparation and his years of service in the Oregon National Guard.
    “My experience at the board was extremely humbling and challenging,” he said. “In my mind, before going to the board, I had the utmost confidence. Once I stepped inside the room, however, it seemed like all the knowledge that I acquired, for my almost six years of experience, went out the window. ”
    Soldiers next competed in a mystery box challenge, where their familiarization of different types of weapons would be tested. Competitors were not given prior knowledge of what type of weapons were inside the box, and had to disassemble and reassemble the weapon while blindfolded and timed.
    “The mystery box was a different kind of challenge for me,” said Pfc. Connor Wells, Charlie Company, 1st Squadron, 82nd Cavalry Regiment, who won the junior enlisted portion of the competition. “That experience was very challenging and different from anything that I had experienced with weapons before.”
    Pfc. Wells and other competitors competed in marksmanship skills next by using the Engagement Skills Trainer (EST). The EST simulates the weapons qualification range by using a modified M4-Carbine to simulate the trajectory of a round to intended targets on a screen.
    “The weapons qualification for me was good,” Connor said, “and I encountered no problems with the equipment. It was very realistic, and I appreciated being able to get set up quickly.”
    Soldiers also competed in basic land navigation, nine-line medical evacuation and general communication procedures. Sgt. 1st Class Mark Kretschmer, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 82nd Troop Command Brigade, who was in charge of this portion of the competition, said testing these skills is an important part of military readiness
    “In this lane Soldiers really get to demonstrate their proficiency and get back to the basics of soldiering,” he said. “If a Soldier finds themselves rusty in any portion of this section of the competition, they will definitely know it. They can then take that knowledge and understanding back to their unit and share the experience with their fellow Soldiers.”
    Upon completion of the event, the competitors were proud to have represented their unit. Woodman and Wells, winners of the state Best Warrior Competition, will go on to represent Oregon in the regional competition.
    “All of today’s competitors were very impressive and demonstrated that regardless of the type of unit, we all are committed to maintaining good soldiering skills,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Lee Smith, 82nd Troop Command Brigade. “Today these Soldiers proved they are the best and deserve to move on.”



    Date Taken: 06.27.2020
    Date Posted: 06.28.2020 20:19
    Story ID: 372982
    Location: CLACKAMAS, OR, US 

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