Six weeks after suffering the first loss of his professional career, “Cleveland Assassin” Chris Lozano got back in the win column Saturday night, flattening another foe with one of his trademark knockouts at North American Allied Fight Series’ “Caged Vengeance 9.”
Lozano, who was wiped from Bellator Fighting Championships’ fourth-season welterweight tournament quarterfinals by Lyman Good in a March 5 unanimous decision, squared off against Gerric Hayes at the Canton Civic Center in Canton, Ohio. After being back-mounted by Hayes for the bulk of the opening period, Lozano busted loose and uncorked a massive right hand-left head kick combination that turned out the Tennessean’s lights. The KO officially came with just one second remaining in the first round, improving Lozano’s record to 7-1 with all seven wins via stoppage.
In the card’s main event, Lozano stablemate and NAAFS welterweight champion Nick Duell lived up to his “Savage” moniker with a brutal head-kick knockout of Chicago-based challenger Kevin Knabjian. Competing exclusively under the NAAFS banner, Duell has amassed an 8-1 record since turning pro in December 2008.
The show also saw the opening round of NAAFS’ four-man heavyweight title tournament, with Stipe Miocic and Bobby Brents each advancing to the final. Unbeaten prospect Miocic recorded his fifth knockout win, as the 28-year-old firefighter took out William Penn -- a late replacement for Chase Gormley, who was himself replacing Mike Wessel -- with punches in the first stanza. Brents, meanwhile, took a three-round unanimous decision over fellow Illinois resident Antoine Hayes.
Gusmao’s Middleweight Campaign Derailed at CFFC 7
Onetime International Fight League standout Andre Gusmao’s transition to 185 pounds hit a snag on Saturday in the form of undefeated “South Jersey Strangler” Tim Williams. The pair met in the main event of Cage Fury Fighting Championships 7 “No Mercy” at Resorts International Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, N.J.
Following two rounds which saw the middleweights exchange momentum with aggressive strikes, Williams blitzed Gusmao in the third round, then pounced when the Brazilian appeared to slip on the canvas. A barrage of punches from Williams forced a stop to the bout just 16 seconds into the last frame, boosting the New Jerseyan’s ledger to 6-0. Gusmao, who won his middleweight debut against Vagner Curio in February 2010, has lost three of four since falling to then-unknown Jon Jones at UFC 87.
Other winners at CFFC 7 included Ricardo Almeida-trained featherweight Eddie Fyvie (three-round unanimous decision against Lester Caslow), lightweight Neil Johnson (second-round TKO against Dave Church) and touted Team Sityodtong 155-pounder Andres Jeudi (three-round unanimous decision against Mtume Goodrum).
Champs Choke in South African Title Tilts
South Africa’s biggest MMA promotion crowned three new champions at Thursday’s Extreme Fighting Championship Africa 8, including fan favorite Garreth McLellan, who topped Jacques Joubert in the main event to become EFCA’s inaugural middleweight titlist. “Soldier Boy” appeared to be headed for a grinding decision win before slapping on a tight guillotine choke and forcing Joubert to tap out at 3:14 of the fourth stanza. McLellan improved to 5-1 with his third straight submission win and has not been defeated since dropping his now-avenged July 2009 MMA debut to Wade Henderson.
McLellan’s teammate, Costa Ioannou, gave the considerable Greek contingent inside Brakpan’s Carnival City Casino and Entertainment World something to cheer about. Ioannou moved to 3-0 by taming Wentzel Nel with a triangle choke at 3:19 of the opening frame to claim Nel’s EFCA lightweight belt.
Ground specialist Adam Speechly took the EFCA welterweight strap from Nolan Swanepoel, eliciting a tap from “The Real Deal” with a guillotine choke 27 ticks into the second round. Speechly made even quicker work of Swanepoel in their first meeting last August, which he won via first-round rear-naked choke.
MMA pioneer Dan Severn collected the 99th win and 60th submission of his career on Saturday, tapping local Aaron Garcia in the first round of their heavyweight bout at King of the Cage’s Lubbock, Texas, debut. KOTC welterweight champ Quinn Mulhern retained his belt in the evening’s main event with a first-round rear-naked choking of Anselmo Martinez.
Hatsu Hioki teammate Takasuke Kume submitted South Korea’s Jung Min Kang with a second-round kimura in the 167-pound main event of Sunday’s Shooto “Gig Central 22” in Nagoya, Japan. The show’s undercard saw Kenichi Hattori armbar “Jackknife” Tsuneo Kimura at 3:58 of their 143-pound bout, while Jun Nakamura, Yuki Nishigo and Daiki Ozaki advanced in the 115-, 123- and 143-pound 2011 Shooto rookie tournaments, respectively.
UFC and WEC vet Tim McKenzie spoiled the 170-pound debut of Jordan Smith on Saturday, punching out the former middleweight prospect in just 11 seconds at Showdown Fights “Shootout” in Orem, Utah. After amassing a 14-0-1 professional record, Smith tasted defeat for the first time last September in a split decision loss to Josh Burkman.
Former Bellator 115-pound tournament entrant Carla Esparza needed only 53 seconds to submit Yadira Anzaldua with a rear-naked choke at Friday’s Evolution Combat Sports Championship event in Clovis, N.M. The show’s all-female main card was topped by Greg Jackson product Heather Clark, who notched a technical knockout of Jennifer Scott in the second round of their 125-pound contest.
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