Strike Off 8: Road to Grand Prix Play By Play & Awards

by Ryan MacDonald

MMA in VA reports from the Richard J. Ernst Cultural Center in Annandale, VA, Saturday, June 25th at approximately 7:00 PM EST with round by round updated and our "of the Night" awards for Strike Off 8: Road to Grand Prix.

Hawraz Syan v. Mischa Christensen

Round 1

Pro kickboxer, Christensen, makes his pro MMA debut against Freedom MMA's Raz Syan, who boasts a 1-0 record.  Syan opened a cut on Mischa early in the round, over his right eye and was successful with several overhand rights, also.  Syan, who has shown himself, in prior bouts, to be a very accomplished ground fighter looked to stand with Christensen early.  Christensen had some success with his kicks and left hands.  Raz did get a quick takedown later in the round, but Mischa returned to his feet pretty quickly.  Syan scored another takedown late in the round, running the total to 2 takedowns in the round.  The striking game could be judged as even, for the round, so the differentiator were the takedowns for Syan.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Syan

Round 2

Syan was on the defensive for the early part of the round, as Christensen was the busier fighter.  The majority of Christensen's shots were blocked, but Christensen did land a nice punch that dropped Syan, or it may have been slip.  The round was halted as Syan was the victim of what referee Todd McGovern called an illegal shot to the back of Syan's head.  From the break, Syan scored his second takedown of this round and applied more pressure on Christensen, by clinching against the cage.  Syan went on to gain two more takedowns in the round and really begin to overwhelm Christensen.  Another round for Syan.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Syan

Round 3

Christensen's cutman, Jason Farrell, did a nice job on the cut over the eyebrow that was opened in the first.  It was not a deterrent for Christensen, leading into this round.  The fresher Syan, scored a double leg takedown on the fatigued Christensen, moving into side control.  Christensen fought back to his feet and pressed the pace, having to know he was down two rounds.  He was unable to derail the Syan ground train, as he was simply too fatigued to fight off the second double leg takedown of the round, by Syan.  A third takedown, for Syan, sealed the victory for Syan.  The judges scored a unanimous decision for Syan, by the scores of 29-28 across the board.   In defeat, the striking prowess and heart shown by Christensen was very impressive and fun to watch.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Syan

Kyle Staten v. Trevor Thompson

Round 1

Staten coming off a big victory over Alan Stephenson in his last Strike Off bout, his opponent for the night is the very tough Thompson.  Staten used his range early, looking to unleash his kicking game.  Thompson caught a kick, however, a got Staten to the mat.  Staten was very calm and very active from his guard, catching Thompson in a triangle.  Not in immediate danger, Thompson did endure several elbows and punches, from Staten, while in the hold.  Thompson passed and got back to his feet, but didn't let Staten up, instead lunging back into Staten's guard and getting caught in a second triangle.  As the round ended, Staten attempted to secure an arm bar, unsuccessfully.  Even though on his back for the majority of the fight, Staten was the aggressor, going for submission after submission.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Staten

Round 2

Both fighter's paces slowed to begin the stanza, as the ground fighting of the 1st really appeared to take the energy out of both fighters.  Thompson landed a nice head kick and worked into another takedown of Staten.  Staten was baiting Thompson to get back in his guard, but this time Thompson did not oblige.  Thompson scored a second takedown in the round and seeing no real opportunity to advance, stood back up and worked on kicking the quads of Staten until referee Scott Howard stood them up.  Thompson scored his third takedown of the round, with approximately 20 seconds remaining.  That round was all Thomspon, with three takedowns and the more frequent and effective striking

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Thompson

Round 3

Thompson was the fresher fighter, coming into the round, as Staten was taking heavy breaths in his corner.  Thompson claimed the center of the cage early and was initiating the exchanges with the fatigued Staten.  Staten attempted a low leg kick which was caught by Thompson, scoring him another takedown in the fight.    Unlike the first round, when Thompson sensed Staten engaging from his back, he returned to his feet and out of harms way.  The majority of the round was Thompson stalking his opponent from above, with two takedowns in the round and the more plentiful and effective strikes.  The judges scored the fight 29-28, across the board, for Trevor Thompson.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Thompson

Darren Costa v. Charles Gamble

Round 1

In a matchup of two great resumes, CFFC and Shogun Fight veteran, Gamble, squares off against CFFC and WSOF veteran, Costa.  Both fighters are from Maryland and will be fighting for State bragging rights.  Neither fighter embraced a "feel out" period, as several strikes led to a takedown attempt from Costa, that was reversed by Gamble, who went right for a Kimura arm bar immediately once both fighters hit the ground.  Gamble used the Kimura as leverage to gain a full mount and then moved to Costa's back, working on a rear-naked choke that ended up being the fight clincher for Gamble.  Charles Gamble is your victor at 2:29 by rear-naked choke. 

Ted Worthington v. Dameron Kirby

Round 1

Worthington will step into the cage for what will be his 87th professional MMA fight, against local favorite, Dameron Kirby.  Kirby, a winner at Strike Off 7 will be looking to win his second in a row and successfully scored a takedown early.  Worthington had a very nice defensive guard, controlling the head and posture of Kirby, not allowing Kirby to get off much offense from the top position.  After a minute or so and no real offensive success, Kirby simply stood up and let the fight return to it's feet, where he clinched back up withe the Iowa veteran, Worthington.  Worthington was able to reverse position and went for a throw, but wasn't able to control Kirby and Kirby landed a nice punch, knocking Worthington to the ground and pouncing back into top position, where Kirby finished the round.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Kirby

Round 2

Kirby used a strong overhand right hand to set up a clinch of Worthington, against the cage.  Worthington landed a nice knee to Kirby's midsection, but Kirby counted with a trip, getting the fight back to the mat, where he was successful in the first round.  Kirby was more effective in posturing up, this round, and landed several good punches to Worthington's head, from top position.  Kirby successfully fought off two submission attempts by Worthington.  Kirby controlled the entire round.

MMA in VA Scorecard 10-9 Kirby

Round 3

Not much offense, by either fighter at the start.  Kirby looked to manage the fight, being up on the scorecards, and Worthington just appeared to either be tired or ready to counter.  Kirby used a nice three punch combo to shoot in and take Worthington down, but Worthington reversed position and was able to get to Kirby's half guard.  As Kirby stood up, Worthington attempted a rear-naked choke, but Kirby successfully turned into him and drop his opponent back to the mat, for the second time in the round.  Kirby, once again ended the round on top of a bloodied Worthington.  Very close round, but more control of the fight went to Kirby in that round.  The judges scored a unanimous decision for Kirby, by the scores of 30-27 on all scorecards.  It was certainly not as flashy as his victory last time out, but was a very solid performance by Kirby, who mixed up his striking and ground games and controlled his experienced opponent for the majority of the fight.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Kirby

Jonathan Vinyard v. Ratioender Melo

Round 1

Two Strike Off veterans square off, as Vinyard was victorious at Strike Off 7, over Mike Lawrence.  Melo dropped his last Strike Off bout at Strike Off 5.  Melo came out early and landed a nice three piece combo, dropping Vinyard at the 46 second mark, causing referee Bill Bookwalter to jump in and wave the fight off.  The winner, by very impressive TKO, is Ratioender Melo.

Ahmet Kayretli v. Michael Ballard

Round 1

Michael Ballard, taking this fight on short notice will have a tall task in front of him, against top bantamweight prospect and local favorite, Ahmet Kayretli.  This fight, however, will be in the Strike Off Featherweight division.  Kayretli, a highly decorated striker and former pro Muay Thai fighter should look to get off early, as he sometimes takes a round to get warm and gauge his opponent, before really turning up the tempo.  Kayretli's only career MMA loss was in his first fight, against one of tonight's main event fighters, Cisco Isata.  Kayretli certainly didn't use much time to warm up in this one, as he used good movement to remain elusive from the strike attempts of Ballard.  Kayretli pushed forward and landed a devastating knee to the head of Ballard, immediately dropping him and opening up a severe gash in the middle of his forehead.  Todd McGovern immediately jumped in to end the fight, preventing any more damage to the downed fighter.  Ahmet Kayretli with the devastating TKO at the 1:06 of the round, makes it six in a row for the Turkish prospect.

Micah Terrill v. Brett Shoenfelt

Round 1

Co-main event time!  This in another matchup of very seasoned and successful Regional fighters, as World Series of fighting veteran, Shoenfelt takes on CFFC and Shogun Fights vet, Micah Terrill.  Both fighters were fired up and ready for this bout, as both fighters spent the intro bouncing around and staying loose.  This is also a matchup of PA vs. MD.  Shoefelt pushed the action early, with great movement, nice faints and landed a nice combo that staggered Terrill.  Terrill, however, bided his time and after shaking off several takedown attempts by Shoenfelt, caught the PA native coming in and staggered him with a punch, dropping Shoenfelt to the mat.  Shoenfelt went to try and grab a leg, but Terrill dropped several hammer fists, ending the bout.  Referee Scott Howard called the bout a KO at the 2:52 mark, for your winner, Micah "See Me" Terrill.

Francisco Isata v. Noe Quintanilla

Round 1

The 8th and final fight of the night is for the Strike Off FC Lightweight title.  Disciple MMA fighter will face off against a last minute opponent in Roanoke's Noe Quintanilla.  Quintanilla, who replaces Billy Quarantillo, will bring his 35+ pro MMA bout experience, in an attempt to end a double digit losing streak and add some nice hardware to his collection.  In order to do that, Noe will not only be taking on Isata, but the "Francisco Fanatics" that packed the Ernst Cultural Center to show love for their fighter.  Both fighters came out and exchanged low leg kicks.  When Noe landed his on Isata, he triggered Cisco's on-switch, as Isata swarmed, with a two-piece punch combo and proceeded to use a very strong clinch to get Quintanilla to the mat.  Quintanilla worked his ground and pound, forcing Quintanilla to give up his back.  Isata quickly sunk in both hooks and a rear-naked choke.  Quintanilla, in the same position he found himself against Nic Bleser, his last time out, did a respectable job of hand fighting, preventing the immediate submission.  Quintanilla was able to land several elbows to the body and punches to the head of Isata and ended up reversing position and gaining momentary top control of Isata.  The fight returned to it's feet for the last 30 seconds, or so of the bout.  

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Isata

Round 2

Isata landed a nice overhand right to Quintanilla, forcing Quintanilla to shoot in, to try and evade any further striking from Isata.  Isata wouldn't allow the takedown and actually took control of the clinch and used it to take down Quintanilla again.  Quintanilla gave up his back again and Isata took the same position he held for the majority of the first round, with Quintanilla in a bridge, fighting off a rear-naked choke.  Quintanilla landed several punches, but with the punches going backward, didn't really have much force behind them.  Noe continued to fight off the choke and, again, reversed the position and took top control.  Isata looked to stay offensive, from his back, and did secure a triangle, with about 10 seconds remaining, but never really threatened with it.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Isata

Round 3

Isata entered the round with what almost appeared to be a disgusted look on his face, as he was not able to finish Quintanilla in either of the first two rounds.  Isata took Quintanilla down again, this time into side control, delivering some nasty short elbows to the head of the Martinsville Fight Club fighter.  One of the elbows created a cut and welt on the right cheek of Quintanilla   Another big elbow from Isata made Quintanilla give up this back.  This time, Isata rotated between rear-naked choke and rolling Quintanilla over for some ground and pound.  Quintanilla looked to reverse position again, but was unsuccessful, allowing Isata to gain a brief full mount before rolling him back over for the rear-naked.  Quintanilla continued to evade the rear-naked choke of Isata, refusing to give.  In an odd occurrence, this title fight was only three rounds, instead of the usual five rounds that we see.  Isata used constricting control to gain a unanimous decision victory by the score of 30-27 on all judges cards.  Your new Strike Off FC Lightweight Champion is Francisco "Cisco" Isata.

MMA in VA Scorecard:  10-9 Isata

 

MMA in VA's "of the Night" Awards

Fight of the Night

Ryan MacDonald:  Hawraz Syan v. Mischa Christensen

Felix Falcon:  Hawraz Syan v. Mischa Christensen

KO of the Night

Ryan MacDonald:  Ahmet Kayretli

Felix Falcon:  Ahmet Kayretli

Sub of the Night

Ryan MacDonald:  Charles Gamble

Felix Falcon:  Charles Gamble