Hamman Exacts ShoXC Revenge

By Brian Knapp and Dave Mandel Aug 16, 2008
Jared Hamman (Pictures) needed less than one full round to avenge the only loss of his career -- a disputed 15-second stoppage at the hands of Poai Suganuma (Pictures) four months ago.

Hamman weathered Suganuma’s quick start in the rematch and made his move midway through the first round, as he stopped the Hawaiian with a series of stout hammer fists in the featured bout on the ShoXC “Elite Challenger Series” Friday at the Table Mountain Casino in Friant, Calif.

In trouble early, Hamman (10-1) unleashed a ringing three-punch combination that left Suganuma dazed. The Hawaiian moved in for a takedown but left himself defenseless, as his opponent sprawled and bombarded him with fight-ending strikes from top position.

While controversy clouded their first encounter in April, there was little to dispute in this one. Suganuma had to be helped to his stool when it was over, as he became Hamman’s fourth knockout victim in five fights.

Jared Hamman (left) vs. Poai Suganuma “I lost the last fight and had to get back to work getting focused on my profession,” Hamman said. “Poai’s a good guy. I give him all the respect in the world.”

The defeat snapped Suganuma’s four-fight winning streak, which included victories inside the K-1 and Icon Sport promotions. He had Hamman on his heels at the beginning, as he clipped the Californian with an overhand right and opened a cut on the bridge of his nose. Suganuma (9-2) secured a takedown and moved to side mount in the first minute of the fight, but Hamman escaped unscathed.

A rubber match between the two fast-rising light heavyweights seems likely.

“He gave me a rematch, so I’d give him a rematch,” Hamman said. “I love to fight. I love the challenge.”

Hamman was not the only prospect to impress.

Brazilian Fabricio Camoes (Pictures) made quick work of UFC veteran Sam Morgan, as he scored with a powerful takedown, moved seamlessly to full mount and locked in a rear-naked choke for the tapout just 47 seconds into round one. A loser in three straight, Morgan (19-11) was powerless on his back.

“I established my mount, waited for him to turn and choked him,” Camoes said. “That’s it. Sammy’s a very tough guy. He was a big challenge for me.”

Camoes (9-4) has rattled off five consecutive wins and could soon be a key player in EliteXC’s lightweight title picture.

“Where’s the big boys?” Camoes asked. “I want a belt. I know there are a lot of tough guys in my weight class, but I came here to challenge.”

Cyrille Diabate (right) vs. Jaime FletcherMeanwhile, French striker Cyrille Diabate (Pictures) carved up the tough but overmatched Jaime Fletcher (Pictures) en route to a lopsided unanimous decision in his North American debut. All three judges scored the bout 30-27 in Diabate’s favor, as the Pride Fighting Championships veteran made a triumphant return from a 16-month layoff.

“I’m not pleased with myself, but hey, it’s a win,” Diabate said. “I had a little ring rust being out for a year and a half. I should be back at 100 percent next time.”

Diabate (12-6-1) -- who owned a seven-inch height advantage and a nine-inch edge in reach -- was systematic in his approach. Effective standing, he damaged Fletcher most when the fight hit the ground, as he opened three cuts with elbows to the head.

Fletcher’s offense was limited, though he scored with a few takedowns. He made a last-ditch effort to stymie Diabate in the third, as he pulled guard on a guillotine choke with 2:10 to go in the fight. Unable to maintain the hold, he wound up on the receiving end of punches and elbows to the head and body. A training partner of former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett (Pictures), Fletcher (6-4) has dropped four of his last five fights.

Female mixed martial arts had its moment in the spotlight, as well.

Cage Warriors champion Rosi Sexton made a successful promotional debut, as she outlasted veteran Debi Purcell (Pictures) in a closely contested bout at 130 pounds. Sexton (9-1) was tireless in her efforts to close the distance and won the fight in the clinch, where she worked for takedowns, avoided any heavy damage and neutralized Purcell’s striking advantage.

“That was a really tough fight; she’s got really strong kicks,” said Sexton, whose only career defeat came against Gina Carano (Pictures). “We’ve been working a lot on [closing the distance]. It paid off.”

Rosi Sexton (left) vs. Debi PurcellBy the end of round one, Purcell (4-2) was noticeably fatigued, but her competitive fires burned until the end. Fighting for the first time in more than two years, she landed a nice spinning backfist and countered Sexton’s attempted Superman punch with a crisp right hand in the third. However, the late offense was not enough to sway the judges, two of whom scored the bout 30-27 in Sexton’s favor.

Elsewhere, King of the Cage middleweight champion Keith Berry (Pictures) left himself open for punishment in a non-title affair contested at a catch-weight of 190 pounds, and Ray Lizama (Pictures) capitalized.

With Berry’s defenses down in the second round, Lizama (6-5) went to work with sharp, accurate strikes. He overwhelmed the 20-year-old Berry with a torrent of punches and ultimately finished him with a flurry against the cage. Two vicious body shots were more than the bloodied Berry (6-3) could withstand, as he crumpled where he stood and forced the referee to intervene. The end came 2:15 into round two.

Lizama, who nearly succumbed to a rear-naked choke in the first round, entered the bout with losses in three of his last four fights but became just the second man -- UFC veteran Terry Martin (Pictures) is the other -- to finish Berry.

“Any kind of win like this erases anything that’s happened in the past,” Lizama said.

Katrina Alendale and Jesse Brock were decision winners in preliminary action, along with Roberto Vargas and Lucas Gamaza (Pictures). In the night’s opening bout, David Douglas (Pictures) finished William Jacobsen in just 72 seconds, as he coaxed a first-round corner stoppage.
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