Toner, Mamoru Represent at Shoot Boxing

By Jordan Breen Jun 2, 2009
For years, it's been an occasional occurrence that MMA fighters make a bold statement in Shoot Boxing. Well, here's another two.

Monday night at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Shoot Boxing staged the third installment of its Bushido series with a card designed to showcase their native stars such at Hiroki Shishido, Kenichi Ogata and Kenji Kanai. Instead, a pair of MMA fighters from opposite sides of the Pacific lit it up.

Former two-division Shooto world champion Mamoru Yamaguchi made his third Shoot Boxing appearance in four months, taking a unanimous decision over Naguranchun Masa M16 in an extension fourth round. A majority 30-30 draw (with one 30-29 card for Masa M16) after three rounds, Shooto's afroed ace took over in the fourth frame, threatening from the clinch with knees, elbows and throws. The 32-year-old Yamaguchi took the extension round 10-9, 10-9, and 10-8 on the judges' scorecards to knock off Shoot Boxing's top-ranked 125-pound fighter.

The victory moves the former MMA flyweight ruler's Shoot Boxing record to 2-1.

However, the real shocker of the evening came in the main event, where Coloradoan MMA prospect Tyler Toner brutally iced 2006 S-Cup champion Kenichi Ogata as the first round expired.

Toner, typically a featherweight, stepped up to 156 pounds on short notice to take on Ogata, one of Shoot Boxing's foremost stars. Just as the first three minutes was set to expire, Toner landed a crushing right head kick that separated Ogata from his consciousness. Ogata, who was stretchered out of the ring, checked out medically in the locker room following the bout.

Toner is Ring of Fire's Young Guns featherweight champion, and a training partner of Rocky Mountain staples Nate Marquardt, Duane "Bang" Ludwig and Eliot Marshall. Ironically, the 26-year-old MMA prospect now has the biggest victory of his fighting career outside of mixed martial arts.
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