I'm here at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, OH, waiting for the Intimidation Cage Fighting's ICF: Breakout to start.
A special thanks to Fight For Life USA for hooking me up with another awesome custom shirt. Other vendors currently here include CockDiesel and American Fighter.
The arena is filling up and there are a lot of easily recognizable MMA figures here. Fighters Rich Franklin, Jens Pulver, Matt Hamill and Mike Patt, and then other notable MMA figures on the national scene like Monte Cox and Mike Yanez. A ton of other local fighters are around to corner teammates or just enjoy what should be a great show. I'll be back when the action kicks off.
Justin Hunt vs. Alex Suhonosov (170)
Hunt, fighting out of Team Nemesis, came out in a Fight For Life USA shirt. Suhonosov, making his MMA debut, fights out of Team Gurgel and is cornered by Jorge Gurgel and Mark Crawn.
After circling for a bit, Hunt jumps in and tries to clinch and Suhonosov lands a short hook. Suhonosov lands an inside leg kick and Hunt steps in and lands an overhand right and misses with a second. Hunt ducks in and misses with another overhand right. The two exchange with Hunt landing the harder punches. Hunt takes the fight down, but Suhonosov transitions and lands in the dominant position and works ground and pound until the ref moves in to stop it.
Suhonosov wins via TKO (strikes) at 1:32 in Round 1.
Matt Egner vs. Steve Muldrow (155)
Egner fights out of Team Xtreme. Muldrow fights out of Team Vision. This is a rematch that previously saw these two guys go five hard rounds with Muldrow earning a solid decision.
Muldrow opens the action with an inside leg kick. The two exchange light punches, feeling out the reach. Muldrow lands an outisde leg kick and Egner answers with one of his own. Muldrow comes in with an inside leg kick, but doesn't follow up. Muldrow lands another leg kick but Egner answer with a straight right. Egner lands a solid right on Muldrow and Muldrow pushes Egner against the fence and works for the double-leg takedown. Egner manages to stuff the takedown, and has Muldrow's neck tied up in a guillotine from the bottom. Muldrow is trying to work his way out, landing punches from the top. Egner lets Muldrow's head go and pulls guard. He ties Muldrow's arms up but Muldrow pushes him against the cage and lands shots to the body. Muldrow gets free and lands a shot from the top but Egner answers with an upkick and the two stand. Egner lands a straight right and Muldrow lands a body shot as the round ends.
An extremely close round, but I think Muldrow did just enough to pull out a winning round, utilizing the top position.
PreView scores it 10-9 Muldrow.
Muldrow opens witha leg kick and Egner answers with a short left hook and a leg kick of his own. Muldrow fakes a leg kick and moves in for the takedown, but Egner defends and has Muldrow's body tied up. Muldrow pulls his arm free and pulls Egner's legs out from under him to get the full takedown but Egner works for a guillotine. Muldrow pulls his head out and starts landing short shots to the body and head from Egner's guard. Egner has one of Muldrow's arms locked up briefly but Muldrow gets it out. Egner works for triangle from teh bottom but transitions back to guard with Muldrow still landing some good shots. Egner works his way back to his feet and crowd is clearly happy to see them standing again. Muldrow thrwos a three punch combination but is short on all three. He shoots in for the takedown and gets Egner down, but Egner has another guillotine locked in from the guard. Muldrow tries to push off Egner, but can't. He lands a couple shots to the body, as Egner tries to pull the choke in tighter as the round ends.
Muldrow had some good takedowns, but Egner got the better of the exchanges and had more success on the ground.
PreView sees it 10-9 Egner
Egner opens the action with a straight right. Muldrow lands a good body kick but Egner steps in to land a left. Muldrow ties him up and picks Egner up for big slam. Muldrow is working from inside Egner's half-guard and Egner is able to transition to full guard. Muldrows lands shots from the top, but Egner stays busy landing some from the bottom. Egner gets his legs up for a triangle attempt and has it locked in tight. Muldrow tries to defend but Egner lands shots to Muldrow's head. Egner is pulling on Muldrow's head down trying to force the tap but Muldrow is staying calm and trying to land body shots. Egner lands more shots from the bottom, but Muldrow is finally able to pull out and starts trying to land shots from the top.
In yet another close round, I'd give this one to Egner due to his control on the ground.
PreView sees the round 10-9 Egner.
Decision coming up.
Steve Muldrow wins via unanimous deicison (no scores announced).
Chris Curtis vs. Taylor Ruscin
Ruscin fights out of Team Gurgel and is cornered by Jorge Gurgel, Rich Franklin and Rob Radford. Chris Curtis (the ICF amateur welterweight champ) fights out of Team Vision and is cornered by Roger Bowling and Dustin Winterhalt. Curtis came out to "Livin La Vida Loca"(I couldn't tell if it was a cover or the real thing - regardless, the crowd got a crack out of that.)
Touch of the gloves and we're off. Ruscin tries a head kick but Curtis checks in and comes in with a Superman punch. Ruscin lands a hard inside leg kick but Curtis answers with a left hook. Ruscin picks Curtis up for a big slam and lands some shots to the head when he lands in the dominant position. He tries to take Curtis's back and sink in a rear naked choke but Curtis defends and even reaches back to land a couple shots to Ruscin's face. Curtis manages to turn but Ruscin transitions and tries to take his back. Ruscin picks Curtis up again, carries him across the ring to his own corner and slams him to end the round.
PreView sees it 10-9 Ruscin.
Ruscin opens with a body kick and Curtis answers with a short overhand right. Curtis lands a right hook and follows with a body kick, but Ruscin catches it and takes Curtis down. Ruscin stands and transitions to side control, but Curtis has one of Ruscin's arms locked up between his legs. Ruscin gets it out but Curtis works to lock it up again. Ruscin has top position but isn't doing much damage at this point, landing very little shots. Curtis rolls out from the bottom but Ruscin quickly transitions and works to take Curtis all the way to the mat. Curtis has his back against the cage and is trying to sink in a guillotine. Ruscin gets his head out and manages to land a shot from the top as the round expires.
When the action slowed and Ruscin was inactive on top, the ref should have stood them up. However, because he didn't, I think Ruscin wins by virtue of scoring the takedowns even though he did little actual damage.
PreView sees it 10-9 Ruscin.
Ruscin opens with another body kick but Curtis lands a couple hard shots and knee before Ruscin takes Curtis down with a double-leg takedown. Curtis is trying to work his way back up, but Ruscin still has control, in Curtis's half-guard. Curtis lands body shots from the bottom, but Ruscin gets more shots from the top and takes Curtis's back. Curtis turns but Ruscin still has control from the top as Curtis tries to land shots of his own. Ruscin manges to take Curtis's back again and lands some head shots, trying to work in the rear naked choke. Curtis works his way out through and stands and beckons for Ruscin to get back up. Ruscin shoots in again and takes Curtis down.
I see Ruscin winning due to his overall control. He did land some solid shots toward the end of the final round, but appeared to do little damage overall.
PreView sees it 10-9 Ruscin.
Taylor Ruscin wins via Unanimous Decision (no scores announced).
Marcus Finch vs. Tyler Johnson (185)
Finch fights out of Team Xtreme at Cincy MMA and Fitness. Johnson, the ICF amateur Middleweight Champ, fights out of Team Vision. In their last meeting, Johnson edged Finch in a close decision to get the belt.
Johnson lands a big right to start, and another and Finch answers with a hard short shot of his own. Johnson lands a two punch combo, but Finch answers with a hard right hook and tries to take Johnson down. The two rolls all the way down switching back and forth between the dominant position and Johnson is able to gain an advantage and slam Finch. Johnson is working from a kimura from the top and Finch is spinning, trying to get out of it. Johnson is in Finch's half-guard but is trying to transition to mount. Johnson lands some shots from the top and lands a hard knee to the body. Finch is eating a lot of shots, but still defending himself. Johnson stands and tries to wrap Finch up in a leg log but Finch takes the dominant position and starts landing hard shots to Johnson's head. Finch landed one last shot right at the buzzer, eliciting an "Oooooooh" from the fans.
In spite of Finch's strong rally late in the round, I still see it 10-9 Johnson due to his control through most of the round.
Finch clinches up to start the round and eats a couple punches on the way in but scores a big takedown. Finch works to land shots from the top and Johnson briefly looks for a heel hook from the bottom before Finch comes back down. Finch works from Johnson's half-guard, landing shots to Johnson's head. Johnson manages to pull guard, but Finch is still landing shots form the top. The ref stands them up. Johnson misses with a straight right and Finch comes in and lands a left then a three punch combo which Johnson answers with two big knees. Finch takes Johnson down but Johnson almost scores a flying kimura on the way down. Finch spins out and moves to a sitting position and Johnson, now standing, throws what looks like a knee to the head. However, the ref did not stop the fight or even briefly stop the action, saying it was a knee to the chest.
PreView sees it 10-9 Finch.
Finch comes out blazing with a two punch combo - the two go down and Finch lands a knee as they stand. Johnson throws out some lazy jabs and lands a body kick. Johnson lands a straight right but Finch answers with a two-punch combo. Johnson misses with a kick and Finch lands a straight left. Johnson answers with a straight shot of his own and Finch pushes him against the cage. Johnson switches positions and lands a knee which Finch answers with one of his own. Finch lands a left hook but misses with the follow up and Johnson lands an inside leg kick as he moves back. Both fighters are missing shots just out of range. Johnson lands an inside leg kick and Finch fires off a four punch combo and a kick, answered by a right from Johnson as the round ends.
A great, hard fight. I think Finch edged out a 10-9 in this round due to the damage he did and the precision of his shots. Definitely a Fight of the Night candidate. Lot of big shots and action through three rounds.
Marcus Finch wins via Unanimous Decision to become the new ICF Amateur Middleweight Champ.
After watching the event, I have to say this definitely gets my vote for FightTicker.com Fight of the Night.
Tiffany Johnson vs. Jami Miller
Miller fights out of Team Vision and also represents Walker MMA. Johnson fights out of Western Hills Kung Fu Center. Both women are making their MMA debuts.
Johnson lands a body kick and leg kick to start. Miller answers with a body kick of her own followed by a left hook. Johnson lands a two punch combo and Miller shoots in for the takedown. Miller is working inside Johnson's half-guard and lands a big shot from teh top. Johnson is going for upkicks and manages to stand but Miller takes her down again and takes Johnson's back looking for the rear naked choke. Miller lands a shot to the side of Johnson's head then another as she tries to straight Johnson out to secure the choke. Miller sinks in the rear naked choke and Johnson quickly taps.
Jami Miller wins via submission (rear naked choke) (time unspecified) in Round 1.
Ron Mitchell vs. Rob Galloway
Galloway fights out of an Ohio school (I missed the name) and Mitchell fights out of Team Vision and Rob Radford's Boxing 4 Fitness. This bout is for the ICF Amateur Heavyweight Title. Mitchell, the defending champ, comes out to Guns N Roses' "Welcome to the Jungle" wearing a Bengals jersey and hat. The crowd eats it up. Mitchell appears to be fighting up a class from when I last saw him, and is cornered by Roger Bowling, Rob Radford and Main Event fighter (and teammate) Victor O'Donnell.
Galloway moves in and pushes Mitchell against the cage looking for a takedown but Mitchell defends and switches position. Mitchell scores a big takedown and lands shots to Galloway's head from a semi-standing position. Mitchell lands more shots to Galloway's head and transitions to a north-south position. Mitchell backs off to let Galloway stand. Galloway lands a leg kick and Mitchell throws a big right hook, followed up by a knee and a hard right that almost puts Galloway out on his feet. Galloway weakly tries to shoot in but Mitchell lands more hard shots - five hard rights - that puts Galloway out and has ref Greg Franklin rushing in to stop the fight.
Ron Mitchell wins at 2:21 in Round 1 (due to KO/TKO - no official announcement).
T.J. Ball vs. Kevin Barton
This fight is for the ICF Amateur Light Heavyweight Title. Barton, the challenger, fights out of Sacan MMA. Ball, the defending Champ, fights out of Team Vision and Rob Radford's Boxing 4 Fitness.
Ball opens up with an overhand right and Barton takes Ball down. Barton slips out of a loose guillotine attempt and Ball scrambles but Barton manages to keep top position. Barton switches positions and looks for a north-south choke, but Ball gets out. Barton scores another big takedown and Ball looks for the kimura from the bottom. Barton scores some body shots, but Ball is working the kimura. Barton manages to shake off one of Ball's arms and Ball pulls guard. Barton lands some short head shots from the top to close out the round.
I don't think Barton scored too much damage on Ball in that round, but he should've easily won the round with his takedown skills and ability to keep Ball from assuming a dominant position.
Ball starts off the round landing a hard right hook. The two battle back and forth trying for takedowns and Ball lands another hard short shot before Barton takes him down. Ball lands a kick from the bottom position as Barton backs off (not quite an upkick), but Barton moves back in and Ball has half-guard. Barton works to pass and tries to secure a guillotine but Ball shakes him off and manages to switch positions and land a few hard shots before Barton takes the top position again and body bumps Ball a couple times. Barton lands more body shots as the round ends.
Ball had a better round this time, but Barton still dominated on the ground. Ball clearly has the advantage standing and Barton has the better ground control.
PreView sees it 10-9 Barton.
Ball tries to move in with a short left hook but Barton ties him up and works for a single leg takedown before transitioning to a double-leg which finally gets Ball down. Ball has Barton tied up in a guillotine attempt, but lets go. Barton lands some body shots from the top and transitions to the north-south position but Ball drives through with his legs and pushes Barton against the cage. Ball stands but Barton scores another double leg takedown, although it merely got Ball to the ground - the slam itself didn't have much of an effect. Ball lands some head shots from the bottom position but ultimately is only able to tie Barton up before Barton backs off and again shoots in for the takedown. Ball works to land more head shots as Barton shoots in again.
Barton appeared to dominate the round, although it was not a necessarily dominant performance. He was able to take Ball down almost at will, but wasn't able to finish when he got it down or cause much damage to Ball.
PreView sees it 10-9 Barton.
Kevin Barton wins via split decision to become the new ICF Amateur Light Heavyweight Champ. (29-28 Barton, 29-28 Ball, 29-28 Barton)
Professional Main Card
Carson Gainey vs. Jeremy Pender
Carson "One Shot"Gainey fights out of Team Fusion. ICF exclusive fighter Jeremy "Pony Boy" Pender (aka Pender), making his Professional Debut, fights out of Domination MMA.
Gainey lands a leg kick but Pender lands a jab simultaneously. Gainey goes for another leg kick but Pender checks it. Pender lands a short left hook and Gainey misses with a big overhand right. The two cllnch up and trade knees. Gainey lands a short left as they separate and moves in on Pender but backs off. Pender catches one of Gainey's kick and lands a straight right. Both fighters miss with some shots as they circle, looking to gain an advantage. Pender lands a jab and Gainey lands a hard body shot. Gainey throws a lazy overhand right that only grazes Pender. Gainey pushes Pender against the cage but Pender comes back with a knee to the body. Pender switches positions but Gainey hip tosses Pender and takes him down. Pender has half-guard and Gainey is landing short elbows to Pender's head from the top. Gainey stands and lets Pender up. Gainey misses with another overhand right and Pender misses with a right hook. Pender grazes Gainey with a right hook but Gainey backs away from any follow up. Pender lands a short left hook and Gainey lands another body shot and pushes Pender against the cage. Pender reverses and lands a knee to Gainey's inner thigh, then one to the body. Pender misses with a left hook as the round ends.
I think Pender should win that round pretty easy. He was clearly the aggressor throughout the round and landed more shots.
PreView sees it 10-9 Pender.
Pender misses with a two-punch combination to open the round. Gainey throws out a jab but it falls short and he misses with an overhand right but lands a second, then misses again with a third. Gainey shoots in, but Pender stuffs the takedown. Gainey tries to take Pender down again, but Pender moves out of the way and takes Gainey's back when Gainey went slipped after trying to shoot. Pender is working for a rear naked choke, but Gainey pulls out. As Pender stands, Gainey lands a big left hook and tries a belly to belly suplex, but can't make it all the way and Pender takes his back when Gainey falls short and quickly sinks in a rear naked choke to end the fight.
Jeremy Pender wins via submission (rear naked choke) at 2:16 in Round 2
Pender definitely scored the FightTicker.com Submission of the Night.
Daniel Straus vs. Mike Baskis (155)
Straus fights out of Team Vision. Baskis, sponsored by Submit MMA, fights out of E-Town Beatdown and Integrated Fighting Systems.
Straus misses with a right while Baskis lands one of his own. Straus scores a big sweep that takes Baskis down in highlight reel fashion and Baskis pulls guard. Straus is landing shots from the top inside Baskis's guard and starts working short elbows to Baskis's head. Straus lands multiple body shots and then a couple more headshots. Baskis tries to twist his body to score an armbar, but Straus muscles his way out of it and lands more body shots, still inside Baskis's guard. Baskis works for an armbar again, but is in an odd position and can't get good leverage. Straus pulls out and starts landing more shots to Baskis's head. Baskis pulls guard and tries for another armbar from the bottom but Straus holds on. The two rolls over twice and Straus pulls his arm out and lands another head shot. Baskis answers with two of his own from guard. Baskis is trying to get his feet on Straus's hips to push off, but Straus pushes his way back inside the guard and lands a few very short shots to the head as the round ends.
PreView sees it 10-9 Straus.
Straus misses with a hook early to start the round, but lands a short kick to the body and he and Baskis mix it up trading short shots. Baskis lands a body kick as the two separate followed by a leg kick. Baskis tries a body kick, but Straus ties him up. Baskis lands two knees to the body before the two separate. Straus lands a couple short shots to the head and Baskis lands a body kick but Straus catches it before briefly letting go. Straus works his way back in and lands a solid left hook. Baskis lands a two-punch combo and the two split again. Baskis lands a leg kick followed by a body kick, then barely misses with a head kick. Baskis works in anoteh rtwo punch combo and Straus lands a short uppercut and fires off a headkick that falls short. Baskis tries a spinning backfist, but misses and lands a short right followed by a two punch combo while Straus fires off a hard knee to the body. Baskis ducks in and jabs but Straus lands a short right. Baskis lands a short right and Straus scores a takedown after missing with a kick to the body. Straus works from inside Baskis's guard, but isn't landing any shots. Both fighters trade punches and Straus scores a takedown as the round ends.
This round was much closer and I think the deciding factor for the Judges will be how much value they gave to Straus's takedowns. I think Straus edged out the round, barely. Had he not scored the takedowns it would've been a different story.
PreView sees it 10-9 Straus.
Baskis lands a kick to the body but Straus briefly catches it and lands a left hook. They clinch up and Straus pushes Baskis against the cage. Baskis lands a body shot as the two separate and Straus manages to work in a knee to Baskis's head. Baskis answers with a leg kick but Straus works in a two punch combo followed by a grazing head kick. Straus comes in with a jab and lands a short left before Baskis pushes him off, avoiding a knee to the head. Straus lands a couple jabs and Baskis misses with an uppercut. Straus lands a kick to the body and an uppercut when Baskis tries to clinch up. Straus comes in with a Superman punch followed by a body kick. He rushes Baskis and lands a knee to the head and another short left. Baskis, now bleeding from a cut under his left eye, is still pushing forward and lands a body shot and a short left hook. Baskis lands a two punch combo but Straus scoops him up and slams him for a big takedown. Straus works elbows to the head from the top as the round expires.
This round saw much less action than the second round, but I think Straus managed to win this round as well.
PreView sees it 10-9 Straus.
Daniel Straus wins via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
Luke Zachrich vs. Robert Thompson
Thompson fights out of Rush MMA. Zachrich fights out of Team Jorge Gurgel.
Both throw out some short shots, testing range. Zachrich lands a right hook, the two circle more and both miss with more short shots. Thompson lands a right and Zachrich answers with one of his own. Zachrich misses with a big left hook but lands two knees to the head before Thompson ties him up and pushes him against the cage. Zachrich picks Thompson up but Thompson manages to avoid the takedown. Thompson lands a left hook and Zachrich slips when he misses with a headkick. Zachrich goes for a single-leg on the way up but Thompson stuffs it. Zachrich grabs Thompson, spins and takes him down and quickly transitions to side control, landing shots to Thompson's head. Zachrich transitions to the other side and lands more shots. The two stand and trade knees to the body. Zachrich lands a hard leg kick, then another that has the crowd cheering with each smacking sound. Thompson lands a lazy jab and Zachrich tries for a head kick but it hits Thompson's shoulder. Zachrich lands another leg kick, then another, followed by an inside leg kick. Zachrich fires off another outside leg kick as the round ends.
PreView sees it 10-9 for Zachrich
The two trade jabs to open the round, then Zachrich lands a second. Zachrich lands a leg kick and Thompson misses with an overhand right. Zachrich pushes Thompson against the cage and lands a straight right and a knee. Zachrich lands another solid leg kick, followed by a straight left, then another leg kick. Zachrich steps in with a jab and follows up with another leg kick, then another, but Thompson answers with a hard straight right. Thompson lands a jab but eats another leg kick. The two briefly separate and Zachrich lands another leg kick, followed by a short right hook. Zachrich lands a hard inside leg kick and continues to stalk Thompson around the cage. Zachrich lands a jab and Thompson misses with an overhand right and eats a knee to the face. Zachrich lands a two punch combo and lands a big leg kick followed by a short left. Zachrich lands another leg kick, then four more to end the round.
PreView sees it 10-9 Zachrich
Zachrich opens the action with a leg kick, continuing to work the same leg he's been kicking all night. Thompson jabs just out of reach and lands a body kick but Zachrich catches that same leg with a kick on the way down, followed by another. Thompson lands a good kick to the body and they circle the cage and Zachrich lands another hard leg kick followed by another and another as Thompson misses with a right hook. Zachrich lands a leg kick but Thompson answers with a kick to the body that hits Zachrich hard, but Zachrich catches the leg and takes Thompson down, landing shots from the top position. Zachrich transitions to side control and traps one of Thompson's arms under one of his legs and starts landing shots to the head. Zachrich continues this ground and pound assault until he can secure a keylock that causes Thompson to tap quickly.
Luke Zachrich wins via submission (keylock) at 3:07 in Round 3
Chad Hinton vs. Jeff Cox
I could not hear Cox's team affiliation. ICF Exclusive fighter Chad "The H-Bomb" Hinton (aka Hitman) fights on Team Xtreme out of Cincy MMA and Fitness and is sporting Fight For Life USA logos on his signature CockDiesel walkout shirt and his ToeZup fight shorts.
The two circle, both looking for an opening. Hinton misses with a short right, and lands an unintentional groin kick. The action is briefly halted. Touch of the gloves and we're on again. Cox throws out a short jab and Hinton lands an inside leg kick, followed by a right hook which Cox answers with a short right of his own. Hinton lands another leg kick, followed by another and misses with a right. Thompson jumps on Hinton's back and takes him down, and lands a knee to the body, followed by some body shots. Hinton is trying to work his way back up the cage, and Cox goes for a guillotine but Hinton manages to pull his head free and stand. Cox throws some knees to Hinton's legs and has Hinton pushed up against the fence. The ref breaks them up. Hinton lands a leg kick and misses with two kicks to the body, but lands a third that Cox catches and uses to almost take Hinton down. They tie up against the cage and Hinton lands a body shot before Cox takes him down. Cox has double underhooks but Hinton is still landing short body shots. Hinton lands a knee from the same position as the round ends.
Even though Hinton was locked up for some of that round, I still think he pulled out a 10-9 round over Cox. Hinton landed some leg kicks and while Cox did have a takedown, he seemed very inactive when he got Hinton locked up against the cage. \
PreView sees it 10-9 Hinton
Cox misses with a left hook and they circle around the cage. Hinton sneaks in a short left hook that hits Cox right on the button and floors him. Hinton pounces on Cox, landing more and more shots, one that appears to actually knock Cox out a second time, until ref Greg Franklin rushes in to stop the fight.
Chad Hinton wins the fight via KO at :37 in Round 2.
Hinton's KO easily takes the FightTicker.com KO of the Night Award.
Dan Christison vs. Marcio Cruz
Cruz fights out of Gracie Fusion and is sporting a pair of Fight For Life USA Shorts with FightTicker.com on the left leg (I'll explain that one later) and is cornered by BJJ great Helio Soneca. Christison fights out of Sandbox MMA and is cornered by Jake O'Brien.
Both miss with jabs . Cruz shoots in and Christison stuffs in and the two stand. Cruz misses iwth a big overhand right and Christison capitalizes and takes him down. They stand again, both testing the range. Cruz misses with another overhand right and Christison lands a leg kick and stuffs another takedown from Cruz, but allows Cruz to stand. Christison misses with a right hook and Cruz shoots in again but Christison stuffs it again and tries to land a punch to the head on the way down. Christison lands a jab followed by a hard right then a leg kick then a body shot. Cruz tries to tie him up against the cage but Christison reverses and takes a knee to the body from Cruz. Cruz gains the dominant position again and lands knees to the inside of Christison's knee. Christison avoids the takedown by briefly grabbing the cage but Cruz eventually works him down and Christison pulls guard. Cruz gets out of the closed guard and tries to land shots from the top, and transitions to the mount position. However, Christison rolls over and gets out of it, but Cruz takes the dominant position again, standing in Christison's guard. Cruz lands some short elbows from the top while Christison works to land shots from the bottom as the round ends.
PreView sees it 10-9 Cruz
Christison opens the action with a couple leg kicks and Cruz answers with a left hook. Christison misses with a roundhouse kick and then spinning backfist. Cruz shoots in but Christison sprawls and momentarily avoids the takedown until Cruz pulls him down with a single leg. Christison is working from inside Cruz's guard and stands back up to let Cruz up - a smart move on Christison's part. Christison ladsn a leg kick followed by an inside leg kick and Cruz answers with another left hook. Christison lands a couple jabs and Cruz shoots in again but Christison sprawls. However, Cruz quickly reverses and takes Christison down, working inside Christison's half-guard. Cruz transitions to side control and tries to lock up Christison in an arm triangle choke before transitioning to full mount. Cruz works elbows from the top and Christison lands some body shots from the bottom before trying to tie Cruz up to force a referee standup. Cruz lands more shots from the top and Christison manages to shake Cruz off but Cruz ends up in side control looking for an armlock. Cruz gets back into full mount and lands a few more shots to Christison's head, tying up one of Christison's arms with his leg. Christison briefly shakes him off again and works for an armlock of his own, trying ot lands shots to Cruz's head at the same time as the round ends.
Christison's sprawls against someone of Cruz's BJJ caliber are great, but once Cruz gets him down, Cruz is at an advantage.
PreView sees it 10-9 Cruz.
Christison (has a mouse under his left eye) comes out with a leg kick to start the round. Both are still testing their ranges, and Christison fires off a roundhouse kick that grazes Cruz's face. Cruz shoots in and Christison defends briefly before Cruz gets him down. Christison takes the top position, and tries to land shots to Cruz's head and body. Cruz has closed guard but isn't doing much more than trying to prevent Christison from posturing up. Christison tries to get up but almost gets caught in an armbar in the process. Cruz shoots in but almost gets caught in a guillotine before getting his head out. They trade knees and Cruz scores another takedown and stands briefly before coming back in with a hard shot to Christison's head. Cruz rotates on top to try and score an armlock, but Christison rotates out and Cruz tries to work from the north-south position before taking Christison's back as the round ends.
PreView sees it 10-9 Cruz.
Marcio Cruz wins via Unanimous Decision (no scores specified).
Victor O'Donnell vs. Forrest Petz
Petz fights out of Strong Style Fight Team. O'Donnell, an ICF exclusive fighter, fights out of Team Vision and is escorted out by no less than 10 members of Team Vision. A quick word about O'Donnell - he's truly a team player - he walked out with and/or was in the corner of every Vision guy that fought tonight even though this meant he was constantly out at the cage before his own fight. O'Donnell is clearly the crowd favorite tonight - Petz was boo'd the whole way to the cage.
The two tie up quickly and O'Donnell throws three quick knees and a jumping knee while Petz tries to land some shots to O'Donnell's head. Petz lands a hard right hook and O'Donnell answers with a right of his own. O'Donnell misses with a right hook and dodges a two-punch combination from petz before missing with a roundhouse kick. Petz lands a solid leg kick and a right hook, but O'Donnell is still the aggressor. O'Donnell lands a leg kick and petz barely misses a hard left hook. The two are working their way around the cage and both miss with big overhand rights. A jab from O'Donnell is just out of range and petz ties him up and tries to take him down, eventually scoring the takedown, landing in O'Donnell's guard. O'Donnell works for a triangle, pulling Petz's head down, trying to lock his left foot under his right knee. O'Donnell locks it in tighter and pulls Petz's head down. Petz manages to get out and stand and misses with a couple head shots before O'Donnell takes him down. Petz has half-guard and O'Donnell lands some shots from the top, trying to get into mount as the round ends.
PreView sees it 10-9 O'Donnell.
O'Donnell lands a short right hook and Petz a straight right to start the action in Round 2. Petz misses with a left hook and O'Donnell lands a left of his own. O'Donnell lands another jab as Petz tries to work his way in. O'Donnell lands a body kick and works for a single leg takedown while Petz goes for a guillotine. O'Donnell manages to pull his head out presses Petz against the cage. Petz stands and turns, putting O'Donnell against the cage as he works to land knees on O'Donnell's head. Petz lands a knee to the body and O'Donnell steps back and lands a stiff jab. Petz lands a leg kick and O'Donnell grazes him with an overhand right. The two trade jabs and O'Donnell misses with another big overhand right. Petz misses with a leg kick, but lands a left hook. O'Donnell lands a solid superman punch followed by a right hook and a head kick that Petz blocks. O'Donnell ducks under a kick from Petz and takes him down and starts a ground and pound assault. Petz reverses and lands in O'Donnell's open guard. Petz stands and tries to dive back in with a shot, but O'Donnell slides out and ends up in the full mount position landing shots to Petz's head. Petz tries to turn and O'Donnell sinks in the rear naked choke causing Petz to quickly tap.
"Vicious" Victor O'Donnell wins via submission (Rear naked choke) at 4:46 in Round 2.
Another good ICF show - some big wins from Hinton, O'Donnell, Pender and Finch, and great showings of respect and sportsmanship from all the fighters. I'll be back in the next few days with the updated blog with pictures from the event and post-event commentary.