TV Recap: S01E03 – American Ninja Warrior Junior Kids 2018

American Ninja Warrior JR Kids Season 1 2018 Episode 3

Here’s a breakdown of the format:

-Ninjas will compete in three divisions: 9-10 years old, 11-12 years old, and 13-14 years old. They will compete in head to head races.

The qualifying rounds feature four ninjas per division. They will start in a seeding round, with the two fastest ninjas from that round taking on the two slowest ninjas in the knockout round.

The winners of the two knockout rounds move on to the final showdown, where the winner will move on to the semifinals.

-The winner of each division at the end of the season receives a $15,000 prize.

Also, Laurie Hernandez will be joining Matt and Akbar as co-host this season.

9-10 Year Old Division (Ninja Mentor: Barclay Stockett)

The course: Sonic Swing, Tic Toc, I-Beam, Floating Tiles, Spin Cycle, 13 Foot Warped Wall (with two hand holds)

Seeding Round: Jordan Watson vs Sean Arms

Sean works at Drew Dreschel’s gym in Connecticut. But according to his mom, he doesn’t “clean up after himself.”

Sean did, however, clean up on the course racing out to the early lead on Jordan, the “Ninja Lion.”

That lead only increased as Jordan flew through the course with the fastest of all nine and ten year olds so far.

Jordan did finish the course, but there was no catching Sean, who might be a frontrunner in the 9-10 year old division.

Seeding Round: Ryan Richardson vs Sydney Smith

Sydney practices martial arts, and Ryan is taller than mentor Barclay Stockett and post-race interviewer Laurie Hernandez.

The two were even going into Tic Toc.

But Sydney got caught in the net at the end of the 2nd obstacle, allowing Ryan to take the lead.

Ryan’s long reach increased the lead on Spin Cycle.

Once again, both competitors made it up the Wall (Sydney did after a failed attempt the first time). But Ryan was up there first.

During the break…

Knockout Round: Sean Arms vs Sydney Smith

Sean moved on to the Final Showdown with a 30 second run of the course.

Knockout Round: Ryan Richardson vs Jordan Watson

The accomplishments of these competitors make me question if I’ve accomplished enough in life.

Jordan, for instance, designed her own ninja course for her backyard.

And she held her own with Ryan early, taking the lead after I-Beam.

But Jordan got stuck on Spin Cycle, allowing Ryan to pass her and make it up the Wall first.

Ryan moves on to face Sean in the Final Showdown.

11-12 Year old Division (Ninja Mentor: Najee Richardson)

The course: Sonic Swing, Tic Toc, Ring Toss, Floating Tiles, Fly Wheels, 13 foot Warped Wall (one hand hold)

Seeding Round: Ava Long vs Brett Zimmerman

Brett’s sister Lindsey competed on the first episode of the season. And both of Brett’s parents have competed on ANW in the past.

And Brett ran out to the early lead.

Brett extended his lead to a full obstacle going into Fly Wheels, but Ava closed quickly.

In fact, Ava (the “Circus Ninja”) nearly passed Brett on top of the Wall. But Brett hit the buzzer just before Ava did.

Seeding Round: Gwen Shaboz vs Daniel Martin

Daniel credits American Ninja Warrior for helping him gain acceptance with others.

This is also a matchup between the tallest boy and tallest girl in the 11-12 year old division.

Daniel raced out to an early lead.

That lead only grew as Gwen got stuck on Ring Toss.

Daniel did not slow down at any point on the course as he hit the buzzer first.

Knockout Round: Brett Zimmerman vs Gwen Shahboz

Along with competing in ninja competitions, Gwen is a drummer in a band.

Brett took an early lead once again.

Brett’s lead grew on Ring Toss.

Gwen slowed down a bit on Floating Tiles, and Brett grew his lead all the way to the end, completing the course and advancing to the Final Race.

But Gwen became the first Shahboz (her parents have also competed on ANW) to hit a buzzer.

During the break…

Daniel Martin advanced to the Final Showdown.

Knockout Round: Daniel Martin vs Ava Long

13-14 year old Division (Ninja Mentor: Kevin Bull):

The course: Archer Steps, Tic Toc, Floating Tiles, Devil Steps, Flying Shelf Grab, 13 foot Warped Wall (no hand holds)

Seeding Round: Elijah Browning vs Charlie Dieringer

Charlie is a top level gymnast and, like Kevin Bull, has alopecia.

Elijah moved ahead quickly, but Charlie caught up.

The two stayed tied going into the Flying Shelf Grab.

Elijah had a small lead going up the Wall.

And when Charlie missed his first attempt going up, Elijah was able to hit the buzzer and take the win.

Seeding Round: Abbie Cheng vs Elena Borges

Elena is inspired by her dad, who was recently diagnosed with cancer.

Elena had a slight lead going into Devil Steps.

But Abbie the rock climber came out with the lead after the fourth obstacle.

Elena took the lead back on Shelf Grab, but it was small.

The pair took turns attempting to go up the Wall. Both missed their first attempt. But Elena made it up on her second attempt, taking the win.

During the break…

Knockout Round: Charlie Dieringer vs Elena Borges

Elena nearly beat Charlie, but she just missed holding onto the top of the Wall.

Charlie made it up his 2nd attempt and advanced to the Final Showdown.

Knockout Round: Elijah Browning vs Abbie Cheng

Elijah has an adopted sister from South Korea.

And Abbie is also a talented singer and artist.

Abbie held her own going into Devil Steps.

But Elijah’s reach advantage allowed him to pull ahead.

Abbie nearly caught up on the fifth obstacle, but Elijah went from dismount to straight up the Warped Wall and advanced to the Final Showdown.

9-10 year old Final Showdown: Sean Arms vs Ryan Richardson

These two are unbeaten so far, but only one will move on.

Sean continued his quick pace as he flew through the course for a third straight time.

Sean moved effortlessly through obstacles, climbing up the Wall and hitting another buzzer as “Little Drew Dreschel” moves on to the 9-10 semifinals.

11-12 year old Final Showdown: Brett Zimmerman vs Daniel Martin

Another battle of unbeatens!!!

The two were even going into the Ring Swing, where Daniel took the lead.

But the lead was brief as Brett passed him on Floating Tiles.

The lead changed a third time on Fly Wheel, and this one was for good.

Daniel held on at the end and hit the buzzer just before Brett, shaving 20 seconds off his previous best time.

13-14 year old Final Showdown: Charlie Dieringer vs Elijah Browning

Elijah jumped out to the early lead in this rematch.

But Charlie stayed close, tying things up before Flying Shelf Grab.

Charlie could not make it up the Wall his first attempt, and Elijah Browning made it up to the buzzer advancing to the semifinals.

Your Semifinalists:

9-10 year old division semifinalist:  Sean Arms

11-12 year old division:  Daniel Martin

13-14 year old division: Elijah Browning


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