A Sherman man is bound and determined to be the first American Ninja Warrior.

If successful, there'd also be a tidy $500,000 prize to accompany the title.

Joe Moravsky, 24, a 2012 graduate of Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, qualified for the the finals of the NBC-TV reality show "American Ninja Warrior."

On Monday, Sept. 9's show, Moravsky was one of six competitors to advance through Stage 2. The next stage will be aired Monday, Sept. 16 at 9 p.m. with finalists vying for the title.

American Ninja Warrior is based on Sasuke, a Japanese sports entertainment TV special in which 100 competitors compete in a four-stage, high-intensity obstacle course. Versions of Sasuke now air in 18 other countries.

Moravsky advanced through American Ninja Warriors' Baltimore regional finals in April, coming in second place, then continued on to the first round of national finals in Las Vegas in June.

"A friend of my boss was on the show last year and I talked to him at a party and thought, `if Matt can do it, so can I,' " said Moravsky, who works as a fitness coach at Vasi's International Gymnastics in Newtown.

"I've always worked out and kept in condition," added Moravsky, a 2007 Shepaug Valley High School graduate. "In my application video for the show, I talked about studying the weather in college as well as showing what I could do physically. The producers liked having a meteorologist-ninja on the show."

Matt Perachi, the athletic director at Shepaug, was Moravsky's basketball coach during his years at the school.

"Joe was a great competitor for us," Perachi said, "I knew he was very versatile and very athletic but I had no idea he was going to develop the capability to do what I've seen him doing on the show."

"I'm not stunned to see him on the show," Perachi added, "but to see how well he is doing in a nationwide competition is incredible."

Moravsky is one of 21 people who went into the national finals of some 500 applicants for a spot on the show.

No one had made it past Stage 3 in the American Ninja Warrior competition before the finals were filmed in June.

Moravsky hasn't been talking this week about how he placed.

His fiancee, Stephanie Silveira, and familyn members were in the crowd during his competition.

He said she rurged him on to compete at his best but teased she knew he'd do well but doubted that he'd win.

"I took that very personally," Moravsky smiled.

stuz@newstimes.com; 860-355-7322