TUESDAY TAKEAWAYS: PARAMOUNT MMA VIII “HUBER VS RILEY”

BY EVAN HERTZOG

PHOTO CREDIT: AMANDA ARMSTRONG

It is that time once again my friends and fight fans. Yes, you guessed it. It’s time for my “Tuesday Takeaways”, from this past weekend. This time around I am going to focus on the event that I was cage side for at the “Magness Arena”, on the Denver University campus this last Friday night.

Paramount MMA put on their 8th event in the promotions history and the third event since being taken over by UFC veteran fighter, Tony Sims. Sims has put an emphasis on getting the best match ups possible to create the best fight cards for the fight fans dollar and so far he has been very successful in doing so. This past Friday night was no different as the quality of the scheduled fights continuously improved as the night went on.

From this great night of action at the Magness, I came away with three major takeaways.

  1. It will take a complete mixed martial artist in every way possible to beat Jace Faiella in the amateur ranks.

Jace Faiella once again proved to be too much for his opponent to handle as he improved his amateur MMA record to 6 and 0 with yet another submission victory that came in the second round against the talented striker, James Sharkey(3-2).I have spoken numerous times on the ground game of Faiella and the talent he possesses as a BJJ fighter in the cage and it was no different on Friday night as he did mostly what he wanted to do with Sharkey on the canvas. The difference this time around is he had to weather the early storm of the young striker in Sharkey while absorbing  an onslaught of body kicks from the stand-up talent.

Jace Wins Paramount MMA

I went into this fight thinking that I wanted to learn something more about Faiella as a fighter and Sharkey helped me to find that something in the first half of the first round. Faiella proved his toughness and willingness to go forward and not break game plan as he was tagged with multiple kicks to the body and was even denied two early takedowns by the clearly “game” fighter in Sharkey. He didn’t waiver though. His ability to adjust on the fly without totally abandoning what works for him on a regular basis was very impressive to me and something I personally hadn’t seen from him in the three fights I have seen live. Granted he didn’t face adversity to the level of this in those other fights though. As I mentioned before Faiella adjusted nicely and finally got Sharkey to the canvas in the last part of the first round and really wore him down going into the second round where he would eventually finish him with the rear naked choke.

This tells me that if you want to take that 0 away from Faiella’s 6-0 record, you are going to have to be the complete package at least at the amateur level. You must be able to grapple as well or better than you strike and if either of those two things come up short when dancing with Faiella in the cage then you too will ultimately come up short at the end of the fight. Good luck to all the venture.

  1. Josh Wick is picking up steam with back to back wins and a new professional title to defend in PMMA.

Josh Wick (8-3). Remember the name. The new 155lb PMMA champion is a force to be reckoned with in my opinion and the 23-year-old 11 fight veteran is starting to pick up steam. Wick sports only three losses on his record with all three losses coming against very formidable opponents in Daniel Moret (12-3), Bryson Gutches (2-0) and Angelo Sanchez (13-6). With a combined record of (27-9), Wick has only taken losses from some of the best in the region. His opponents record in total add up to be (60-4), so needless to say this young man is ahead of the game as far as what he has seen and gone up against in the cage in his young career thus far.

It’s what he has done recently that has the hype train revving its engine behind Wick though, with him winning three of his last four and two in a row including his title fight last Friday night against the very talented and game, Dominic Montoya (7-2) in impressive fashion. Stay tuned to the fight magazine to see what is next for this kid as we hope to sit down with him in the very near future. Keep your attention on Josh Wick. I have a feeling you won’t be disappointed.

  1. Josh Huber is just like a fine wine, he is getting better with age.

Josh Huber (22-10) and Zac Riley (5-5) put on a fantastic main event on Friday night as they competed for the 135lb PMMA title belt at the Magness arena. Both fighters laid it all out on the line as they came with flying knees and head kicks galore but there was one clear dominant fighter throughout the fight. Josh Huber. We have become accustom to Huber’s fighting style and success. Especially over the last couple of years as we have seen Huber take six of his last seven including four in a row now. With seven of his ten losses coming between 2012-2015, Huber has only recorded one loss since.

The man has been on a tear since he turned 30 years old and with his clear win at Paramount VIII last Friday I believe it is safe to say that the best is yet to come from the fan favorite Josh Huber. We aren’t quite sure what is next for the grizzled vet but we know that whoever is in line better be ready for a man that is clearly in the prime of his career.

Talk to you all next week! Be safe and most importantly be good to each other!

HERTZY OUT

TUESDAY TAKEAWAYS: SCL BOXING “POUND FOR POUND”

BY EVAN HERTZOG

10-3-17

Sparta Combat League, better known in this part of the world simply as SCL, put on one of the best boxing cards of their 2017 campaign when the likes of Antonio Flores, Andrew Strode, Heath Soderstrom, Alejandro Ibarra and the great Jose Arellano invaded the Grizzly Rose last Saturday afternoon in Denver(see the fight magazine Facebook page for live breakdowns of the fight) for SCL’s “Pound for Pound”. The atmosphere was what we have all come to expect from SCL, with a packed house and some of the areas most prominent combat athletes in atendence, including current TUF26 coach, undefeated UFC lightweight Justin Gaethje and the young undefeated rising boxing star Misael Lopez just to name a couple. This is no shock as the promotion continues to grow its brand on multiple levels and attracts some of the best athletes the state and surrounding region has to offer.

I wanted to wait for Tuesday, to write up about the latest SCL boxing event because of a few major takeaways I left the Grizzly Rose with on Saturday afternoon. So let me move forward with my Tuesday takeaways SCL boxing edition.

In my opinion you can take three major things away from SCL’s Pound for Pound. These things were glaring to me as I made my drive home down south I25 on Saturday:

      1. Sticking to the fight plan.
      2. The body shall never forget.
      3. Warriors are made through adversity.

Lets go ahead and do these in the order I have them written down. My first big takeaway from Saturday is that, those that had the ability to overcome their opponent and stick to their fight plan, went home with big victories this past weekend. My first example of this came in the outstanding bout between Mario Quezada (2-1) and Andrew Strode (2-0).

Quezada made it very clear early in the fight that he would be trying to close the distance as quickly as he could and overwhelm Strode with inside punching. To manage this attack, Strode would have to implement his plan in response to the quick and smothering Mario Quezada and he would have to do so from first to final bell. The game plan? Stick and move. Be the more accurate and quicker puncher going backwards and sideways. Use superior hand speed to counter the quick closing Quezada and lastly never shell up on the ropes. Keep moving.

All of these things were delivered on with precision and consistency from the young Andrew Strode. He was able to slow Quezada down greatly by the fourth and final round of their contest, specifically with a beautiful recurring straight right counter punch as Quezada tried to swarm Strode. The willingness of this young fighter to stick to his plan and execute it consistently throughout the fight speaks volumes to the future of this young and talented fighter and the success that comes with fighting the fight that the match-up calls for.

The second takeaway from Saturday is nothing new, it was just reaffirmed on the day. The body never forgets and if you invest in it early and often, your chances of success grow immensely. This should be number one for most fighters but in the one punch knockout hungry world we live in the body goes neglected for most. A lot of fighters have lost site on the fact that if you stick to the body, that knockout becomes easier to achieve later on in the fight. I suppose the young man that I’m highlighting this category doesn’t fall in the most fighters, list I mentioned before but he could very easily been the main focus on all three of my takeaways as he exemplified all of them.

Antonio Flores (4-0) put on a show and captured the Pro 140lb SCL boxing title in impressive fashion over the very talented and tough Jonny Jarabek (5-2). The fact that he was able to score such a great victory over the likes of Jarabek is one thing but the way he did it was what was most impressive. The body attack of Flores was relentless and brutal. It started in the first round and continued until the fight was waived off in the third round. The body punching check was cashed in near the midway point of the scheduled six round fight. Flores, determined to stay low and punish the ribs, liver and midsection of Jarabek, was able to drop the taller and longer fighter to the canvas on three occasions, with the third coming just moments after the second knockdown, the fight was waived off and Jarabek had no argument. Flores was dead set on sticking to the body and boy did it pay off as he left with one of the most impressive victories of the evening and the 140lb SCL title belt draped over his shoulders.

REPEAT AFTER ME:  THE BODY NEVER FORGETS”. Thanks for the reminder Antonio!

Finally in what seemed to be the theme, not only on the SCL boxing card but throughout the weekend here in Denver. The bounce back. Yes, the bounce back was very real in the mile high this weekend. This, yet another reminder to one of the oldest adages in sports. “ It isn’t over until it’s over”, which couldn’t ring more true than in the fight game. In multiple bouts this passed weekend we saw fighters come off the canvas to either win a decision or score huge stoppages of their own. We learned much about which fighters possess a real warrior mindset when the cards are stacked against them and they are approached with adversity for the first time in their fighting careers. I can’t continue without filling you in with a little factoid about Antonio Flores from the previous category. He went to the body and finished Jonny Jarabek, after getting dropped by him in the first round.

The fighter that I would like to stay focused on in this though, is the great young undefeated boxer, Jose Arellano(4-0). It was rumored before the fight and later confirmed by Arellano himself after the bout, that he came into fight night at fifty percent, with a busted nose and broken finger and knuckle in his power punching right hand. If the will and strength to go on and fight for his fans doesn’t speak enough to his fighting heart and character then maybe the fact that he did so while taking on the most dangerous opponent of his career thus far in Ruben Tellez, will do so for you. Now digest that and add in the fact that he was rocked and hurt by Tellez in the first round, which forced him to a knee momentarily. The odds were not great for Arellano early but we all found out that the odds are just that, they are not guarantees. The heart and and toughness, along with the smarts and undeniable skill, was enough for Jose to not lose another round in the fight against the super talented Tellez. With a broken right hand that he threw continuously through the final four rounds of the main event to ultimately score a unanimous decision victory and move to (4-0) as a great young pro. I think it is safe to say we found a true warrior in Arellano.

Stick to the fight plan.

The body shall never forget.

Prove your fighting heart coming off of the canvas and become a legend.

SCL boxing.

HERTZY OUT

AIRTIGHT BOXING: MELO REIGNS SUPREME

 Boxing, winners, Denver, Airtight Boxing, Arturo MeloBY EVAN HERTZOG

9-30-17

PHOTO CREDIT: AMANDA ARMSTRONG TRIHEX PHOTOGRAPHY/ THE FIGHT MAGAZINE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

The “Imperium Event Center”, was rocking Friday night in Westminster Colorado as Airtight Boxing put on one of the more competitive cards I can remember from 2017 in Colorado. Each match show cased both fighters involved with many back and forth fights taking place last night. In total, Airtight provided us with a 9-bout card including 1 amateur kickboxing bout, 6 amateur boxing bouts and 2 amazing pro boxing bouts in the co-main and main event.

The Imperium always provides an intense environment with its close quarters and fans seemingly breathing on top of the ring. When it is standing room only it only adds to the great boxing atmosphere. It gets loud in there and loud quickly. I have no better example other than when Chuy Alvarado stepped into the ring on Friday night to take on Sydney Haynes in the final amateur boxing match of the evening. Alvarado was the clear bread winner as far as ticket sales go for airtight’s latest event as what seemed like the entire venue rose to their feet and roared as “El Tanque” himself strolled to the ring. They never sat down either. With each overhand right and sweeping left hook that landed for Alvarado the crowd went into frenzy and although he didn’t score the knock out in front of his rabid fan base, he did put on a great show and won a unanimous decision against a very formidable opponent in Haynes and gave cause for an absolute party atmosphere as he made his way back to the locker room.

Alvarado’s energy carried over into the pro portion of the card as we made our way into the co-main event between Sevelle Hasan(1-1) and Tommy Roque(1-0). This proved to be such and even match as both fighters showed off their boxing skill and counter punching skill. Hasan seemed to have figured out the timing of the left hand to the body that Roque was determined to throw and started to move out the back door and land a stunning right cross repeatedly until he finally caught Roque square on the chin sending the Marine veteran crashing to the canvas in what looked like a devastating KO at first glance but Roque somehow made it to his feet and recovered almost instantly. Hasan allowed Roque back in it in the final minute and a half of the second round when he should have gone for the finish. This would prove to be costly for Hasan as the marine Roque stole the momentum going into the third round and picked up the pace even more so in the third.

Roque made an adjustment between rounds two and three and abandoned the left hand to the body and instead switched up his attack by throwing more right hooks to the body, eliminating the right cross power punch of Hasan that sent him to the canvas in the second round. The third saw multiple phonebooth like exchanges between the two warriors but the body work of Roque seemed to be taking affect as we moved into the last minute and a half of the round. The power of Hasan was clearly not the same now and the constant pressure from the once nearly knocked out Roque, looked to be somewhat shaking the confidence of Hasan. Roque was able to pressure Hasan to the ropes for the majority of the third round but Hasan was still answering with power shots of his own, landing an effective right uppercut. Roque would return fire, landing his best power punches of the fight to the body. Once the damage was done down stairs, Roque let Hasan come forward off the ropes. As Hasan was clearly protecting the body, a big overhand right rocked Hasan and sat him down on the middle ropes which would normally be called a knockdown but after two more strikes landed on Hasan, referee Tim Mills had seen enough and jumped in to stop the fight, giving Roque a KO victory in his pro debut and in epic comeback fashion showing the pure heart of a United States Marine. Congrats to both fighters for putting on the fight of the night in my opinion.

With one of the most highly anticipated fights of the year next up in the main event of the evening between Arturo Melo(4-2) and Mario Sierra(2-1) for the Rocky Mountain State Super Bantamweight title, I wasn’t sure if the energy in the building could be kept at such a high level after two loud, action-packed fights in the Alvarado fight and the co-main event.

It was kept.

From the opening bell the two super bantamweight warriors came to throw down and put on a show. The exchanges were the fastest and most impressive of the entire evening as both Melo and Sierra came out in the first round looking very sharp. Sierra was having success early on the inside but Melo started to control the distance and the pace of the fight early with a new found stiff jab the was keeping Sierra just out of reach with his power hooks that have been so successful early in his career. The jab continued to frustrate Sierra until he forced the action and walked through punches to close the distance, landing two or three good shots on Melo midway through the first round but the maturation of Melo and the willingness to instantly return fire was seeming to pay off for the 19-year-old Colorado Springs fighter. The power punching of Sierra wasn’t having the same effect on Melo as it has had against lesser opponents in the past and that proved to be true as Melo ate a shot from Sierra and sent back a glancing right hand that saw Sierra hit the canvas for the first time in his career. The corner of Sierra and the fighter himself argued that it was a slip and with the angle that I had I can’t really say for certain, so I always side with the third man the ring as he or she always has the best view of the fight.

The knockdown at the end of the first round gave some worry to the Sierra fan base as they hadn’t seen him in that position before in his pro boxing career, but the young man showed nothing but confidence as the second round started, showing his willingness to get back to the inside and exchange power punches with Melo. Melo wasn’t having any of that though and continued to control the fight with his new found snapping jab that once again kept Sierra away until he rushed forward which opened up the power punching of Melo, making Sierra an easier target to hit as he came towards him. The final minute of round two bounced back into phone booth mode as Melo abandoned the jab and decided to exchange with Sierra for the last portion of the round, with both fighters landing significant shots to each of their cheek bones it was becoming a close fight once again after the first-round knockdown for Melo.

The third round started and the Imperium event center was flooded with chants of Mario and rumbles of Melo as the two young boxing talents met again in the center of the ring and exchanged four punch combinations respectfully. Sierra seemed to have a mean streak in him in the third round as he came forward landing some of his best punches in the fight while eating some of Melos best power shots. His aggression would get the best of him in the final minute of round three as he threw caution the wind and unleashed everything he had but that left him exposed upstairs and Arturo Melo would take advantage of that. The beginning of the end started with a stinging jab from Melo that snapped the head of Sierra back and dazed him a bit. As he tried to recover and move forward in the following moments he left himself open for two hooks the face in a row the right hook stumbled Sierra and had him in deep trouble. As he stumbled forward from the right hook landed by Melo, Sierra couldn’t get his hands back up and Melo dropped a hammer of a left hook that sent Sierra crashing to the canvas. All credit to the heart and toughness of Sierra as it didn’t seem as though he would make it back to his feet but he somehow pulled himself up but he was still too dazed and was not able to walk forward to veteran referee Stephen Blea and stumbled into his corner and the ropes, forcing Blea to waive the fight off, ending the night in insanely entertaining fashion.

Charlie Ibarra (head boxing coach hustle hard boxing) rushed into the ring and lifted his fighter and new crowned rocky mountain super bantamweight champion Arturo Melo to the rafters as the Imperium event center went into a fever pitch.

Both fighters showed true class and respect to each other and to each’s fan base after their exciting main event. I’ve been saying it for a month now. These two fighters deserve all the credit in the world for taking the hard fights early and often in their careers. They could have waited three years and padded their records on their way to this inevitable fight but instead these two young gentleman decided to step into the proving grounds early and for that I salute the both of you.

Humble in victory and defeat, Melo and Sierra prove what type of role model’s boxers can be for our youth even when they are youthful still themselves.

HERTZY OUT

Arturo Melo, Boxing News, Belt, Title Winner

FIGHT TALK: SCL BOXING MATCH MAKER CHRIS MACLEAN-MAESTAS

EVAN HERTZOG

9-23-17

Sparta Combat League brings the boxing side of their promotion back to “The Grizzly Rose”, on Saturday September 30th in Denver. Known mostly for their MMA promotion, SCL has continued to make waves in boxing in the region as they continue to put on great fight nights with some of Denver’s best young boxing talent on display at every event. I look forward to seeing show announcements from the promotion, more and more on the “sweet science”, end of things. The cards have gotten better with each announcement and next Saturdays lineup is no different.

SCL is bringing a total of 12 boxing matches to the Griz, including 6 professional bouts. Three of which I am very excited for in Jarabek(5-1) vs Antonio Flores(3-0)/ Jose Arellano(3-0) vs Ruben Tellez(2-1) and Mario Quezada(2-0) vs Andrew Strode(1-0). I was able to catch up with SCL Boxing match-maker Chris Maclean-Maestas earlier this month to get his perspective on this great card and a little insight into what SCL has in store moving forward.

I started by asking for a general statement on the card and Chris was kind enough to give me that as follows.

                We are very excited about our September 30th card as it is probably one of the strongest we have held to date. We Pride ourselves on putting together quality match ups and I believe we hit the mark and exceeded that with the card on September 30. We have the best young fighters in Colorado showcasing their skills on the day.

The card usually comes together with just spit bawling back-and-forth between myself and Jeff(Cisneros) then throwing feelers out to see what we can actually make happen. This go-round a lot of it really worked out as we have some quality local match ups, as well as quality opposition coming in from out of town to challenge our Colorado fighters. I just would like to thank all of the SCL family because it is all a team effort and couldn’t be done without each and every one of us.”

I then asked him if he could point out a couple bouts on the card that really stood out to him and could prove to be fan favorite type of fights.

                “Absolutely, the two that stick out to me the most would probably be the Andrew Strode versus Mario Quezada fight and Jonny Jarabek versus Antonio Flores. The Strode Quezada fight is very intriguing as both young undefeated fighters with something to prove I think that is going to be full of action from the opening bell. As far as the Jarabek Flores matchup you have a clash of styles that can only present fireworks. Flores who is a come forward pressure type fighter with a great chin against A slick long rangy boxer in Jarabek with a chip on his shoulder makes for a very interesting matchup. Also any fight that Jose Arrelano is in will always be a treat!”

Finally I wrapped up our discussion by asking him for the outlook on SCL Boxing as we end 2017 and move into 2018 and what the fans could expect?

                “Not just SCL boxing fans but Colorado boxing fans in general can expect nothing but quality in our fights in our production and in our approach. With the young talent the state has mixed with some quality veterans you can expect some marquee match up’s with a few surprises here and there. We are primed and ready to make a big splash into next year.”

Keep checking in with the fight magazine this week as we continue coverage during “fight week”.

HERTZY OUT

AIRTIGHT BOXING:”READY 2 RUMBLE” – MELO AND SIERRA:”READY 2 SHINE”

BY EVAN HERTZOG

9-12-17

PHOTO CREDIT: AMANDA ARMSTRONG “TRIHEX PHOTOGRAPHY”

Colorado boxing starts its ferocious march into the fall of 2017 with multiple cards and many talented boxers up and down each of them. We get the fight filled fall of ’17 kicked off at the “Imperium Event Center” in Westminster Colorado on September 29th, with Air Tight Boxing’s “Ready2Rumble”. The first of many planned boxing events under the powerhouse promotions banner lead by the Colorado Boxing mainstay, Steve Mestas.

As always Steve will be giving a platform to the upcoming talent that the amateur boxing scene has to offer in the Rocky Mountain state and the surrounding territory. These fights will give us a glance into the states boxing future and provide for some fun action, no doubt, but for now it is the top two bouts atop the poster that should be intriguing to any fight fan in the area. Including a must see collision course of two of Colorado’s best young talents’ in the lower weight divisions when Arturo Melo (3-2) of Colorado Springs’ “Hustle Hard Boxing” and Mario Sierra (2-0-1) of Greeley and the “Top Notch Boxing Gym”, square off in the main event of the evening.

Before we are treated with a possible fight of the year candidate between Melo and Sierra, we will have a chance to see young undefeated prospect Seville Hasan (1-0) return to the ring for the first time since scoring a TKO victory in his debut in early 2017 over Henry Silva. This time the hungry Hasan will be stepping in with Tommy Roque, which should make for a stellar co main event and leave us wanting more as we head into one of the more highly anticipated fights in the region at the end of 2017, in the main event.

Although both fighters in the main event call other Colorado cities home, they will meet on familiar ground in Denver as it acts as a meeting point between these two young guns. Both fighters have spent the better part of their early careers fighting in Denver and have started to garner respect from neutral fight fans in the mile high in each’s case, which should make for a great crowd on the 29th at the Imperium, only adding to the esteem of this fight.

The Imperium is a great venue for boxing and with its tight walls the fight fans are right on top of the action in the very intimate setting in Westminster. The heat turns up as the building feels up and it feels as though you are just as much a part of the fight as the two warriors that entertain inside of the ring. Many great fights have taken place in the Imperium and it’s in my humble opinion that we will be able to add another to the list after Melo and Sierra finish the evening at ATB’s “Ready2Rumble”.

This fight is crucial for both fighters moving forward as the rest of their careers’ path will be determined by their early success or failures. Both fighters should be credited for making this fight happen for just that reason. The thing is though, neither of these guys are strangers to taking the tough fight early on. Both having gone to battle with one of Colorado’s other up and coming fighters in Adan Gonzales (3-1-1) of “TLC Boxing Gym”. Melo lost a close decision to Gonzales and Sierra fought him to a draw, both within the last year. With this common opponent and with the outcomes for each of them, this fight could act as an elimination bout for a possible rematch with Gonzales down the road, something I’m sure both fighters hold great interest in.

The good thing for both guys is that neither of those bouts with Gonzales were their last bouts. Melo is coming off a big first round KO of Greg Gallegos and Sierra, not to be outdone, is coming off of his own first round knockout victory when he tore down Marco Alcaraz in the first round of their fight earlier this year. This is the perfect storm for a great fight and if all goes as planned over the next couple of weeks it will be a fight we will be able to see come to fruition in front of our very own eyes.

Tickets are available through any fighter that is on the card and through Steve Mestas. You can also get ahold of us here at The Fight Magazine and we will get you set away with the ticket of your choice.

Once again, the fights will be located at the “Imperium Event Center”, at 3051 W. 74th Ave. in Westminster Colorado on September 29th. Doors will open at 6pm and the first bell will sound at 7:30pm sharp.

See you there!

HERTZY OUT

INSTANT BREAKDOWN: MAIN EVENT MILES VS REYEZ KICKDOWN 129

BY EVAN HERTZOG

Image Copyright: Amanda Armstrong

MAIN EVENT: JOE MILES (4-3) VS ISAIAH REYEZ (0-1) PRO 170LBS

RD#1: Our main event is upon us and it starts with Reyez throwing multiple leg kicks but Miles closes distance fast pushing Reyez to the cage and eventually working a single leg. Miles is in the half guard and is raining down punches to the body of Reyez and he is looking to finish him with ground and pound to the body which would be a first for me. Reyez survives the first onslaught but is really taking damage now in the second flurry from Miles as he smothers him and eventually gets the mount where he lands twenty punches unanswered forcing referee Johnson to call the fight with a minute left in the first round.

MILES VIA 1ST ROUND TKO

INSTANT BREAKDOWN: PRO CO MAIN WERNER VS REED KICKDOWN 129

BY EVAN HERTZOG

Image Copyright: Amanda Armstrong

BOUT#9: ANTHONY WERNER (DEBUT) VS JAMES REED (11-13) PRO 145LBS

RD#1: The co main event of the evening is our first professional bout of the evening with Anthony Werner making his debut against veteran James Reed. Reed comes out early with a low kick and a superman punch off the cage. This pushes Werner back and he lands a big kick across the midsection of Werner and then finishes with a takedown. Reed works ground and pound from inside the guard of Werner but gets too high in the guard and almost gets caught in an armbar. The sly vet in Reed won’t have it though as he slides out of it and takes the back of Werner and sinks the rear naked choke in simultaneously. Moments later Werner is forced to tap out to the choke.

REED VIA 1ST ROUND RNC

INSTANT BREAKDOWN: SAGE VS CHATHAM SUPER HW AM. TITLE KICKDOWN 129

BY EVAN HERTZOG

BOUT#8: JAKE CHATHAM (4-1) VS JAKE SAGE (DEBUT) AM. SUPER HW TITLE FIGHT

RD#1: Our only heavyweight fight of the evening is in the super heavy weight category. These are two big guys and they start throwing hard early and often. Chatham lands a big straight that sends Sage to the canvas early but he recovers and gets back to his feet. Chatham is controlling the fight as he clinches Sage against the cage and works the body repeatedly. Short knees are now landing for Chatham but Sage finally separates. Sage lands a jab and moves Chatham to the cage for the first time in the fight so far but it is too little too late as the ten second clacker sounds for the end of the first round.

RD#2: Sage starts the second with a nice lower leg kick but Chatham closes the distance and forces Sage to the cage once again. The knees are coming earlier now from Chatham but Sage gets separation and lands a flurry of punches as Chatham continues to move forward for the clinch with his head down.  They decide to trade and Sage lands a couple nice shots and a big knee. Sage lands a big uppercut to end the round that opens a cut over the left eyebrow of Chatham.

RD#3: Our final round starts and they stand in the middle trading jabs. Sage seems to be the fresher fighter at this point but Chatham has a lot of power still late in the fight but has given up on the grappling for the time being. Sage now throws a left and closes the distance but this is in Chatham’s favor as he has proven to be the better grappler and forces the reversal on Sage. Sage gets separation and lands three more shots before being tied up along the fence again. Chatham seems to be comfortable with the fight riding out in grappling position but they separate for the final ten seconds and throw hands until they end up against the cage during the final bell. Tough fight to judge.

SPLIT DECISION VICTORY FOR JAKE SAGE IN HIS DEBUT

INSTANT BREAKDOWN: JOHNSON VS WRIGHT AM. 155LB TITLE KICKDOWN 129

BY EVAN HERTZOG

BOUT#7: STEVE JOHNSON (3-4) VS MIKE WRIGHT (4-6) AM. 155LBS TITLE

RD#1: Our first title fight of the evening starts with both fighters circling and then moving in to strike at the same time. Johnson moves in and catches the kick of Wright but isn’t patient inside of the guard of Wright. Wright takes advantage of that and gets and armbar locked in from the bottom and it is deep. Johnson verbally taps and the fight is over in under 30 seconds to become the Kickdown MMA 155lb amateur champion.

WRIGHT VIA 1ST ROUND ARMBAR

INSTANT BREAKDOWN: BELTRAN VS HERERRA KICKDOWN 129

BY EVAN HERTZOG

BOUT#6: FRANCISCO BELTRAN (0-3) VS OSCAR HERERRA (3-2) AM. 125LBS

RD#1: Beltran is the traveling fighter in this one as he resides in Torrington Wyoming. Fighters touch gloves and look to trade early. Beltran lands first and forces Hererra into a takedown where Beltran reverses his position instantly. Both fighters engage in a near stalemate north south position. Beltran sweeps and moves to side control but only for a moment as Hererra shoots back to his feet. Beltran once again pressures Hererra against the cage and lands a nice combination. Hererra gets another takedown but it seems to be out of desperation. Hererra gets to the back of Beltran for a moment but Beltran makes his way out the back door as the first round comes to an end.

RD#2: Hererra throws a low kick early but Beltran checks it. Moments later a Beltran kick lands low on Hererra and the action is stopped for a minute while a warning to Beltran is given for the blow. Both fighters touch gloves in a sign of respect as the action picks back up. Beltran lands a high kick across the face of the bending Hererra that sends both fighters into a scramble. Beltran lands good shots from the top but Hererra hits a switch and reverses the position. This too only lasts a moment as Beltran works his way into the guard of Hererra. Beltran has an arm bar opportunity but loses it in the final ten seconds of the round.

RD#3: The third starts with both fighters embracing for a hug. That lasts one second. They separate and start to throw. Hererra lands his best shot in a swooping right hand that shows some power in it still for being the final round of a grueling fight. Hererra lands the takedown and takes the mount but only for a short time as Beltran reverses him and ends up in the guard of Hererra once again. Hererra reverses now and lands his best ground and pound of the fight so far inside the guard of Beltran. The fight ends with hammer fists landing from Hererra on top. Good fight. We wait for the scorecards to be read.

BELTRAN VIA SPLIT DECISION