PRO MMA (promma.info) was on hand live at the Patriot Center in Fairfax, Virginia Saturday night to cover ULTIMATE WARRIOR CHALLENGE: MAN ‘O’ WAR. With a total of nine fights in all, including a UWC Bantamweight Title Fight and a highly anticipated female MMA bout, it was full night of high level mixed martial arts action.
Mike Easton vs. Justin Robbins – UWC Bantamweight Title Fight
It was not against his original opponent, but Mike Easton still had little trouble troubling handling HIT Squad fighter Justin Robbins. The two fighters cautiously traded leg kicks for two rounds, before they ended up on the ground in the third. Once off the ground, with Easton in guard, Robbins tried to sweep but got caught in a tight guillotine choke. Robbins tapped and the fight was stopped at the 4:44 mark of the third round.
After the fight the new champion explained his submission, “When he came up to try to sweep, it’s time to throw in the guillotine, it is what I drill everyday.” When asked about his goals in the sport Easton responded, “To represent the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area and Team Lloyd Irvin, and let them know we have the best fighters.”
Jamal Patterson vs. Antwain Britt
Jamal Patterson got back into MMA action for the first time since the demise of the IFL and did so in impressive fashion. Patterson, facing local favorite and TUF 8 veteran Antwain Britt, finished the fight with a guillotine choke only 44 seconds into the first round. The former IFL title challenger dropped Britt to his knees with a beautiful inside trip takedown and then caught him in the choke when his opponent was trying to stand.
Patterson said that he drew inspiration from his high school alma mater, Blair Academy, who won their 29th consecutive national prep wrestling title earlier in the day, “it is always an inspiration to see my old alma mater dominating like they always do.”
Jose Villarisco vs. John Dodson
After a controversial decision left John Dodson with a sour taste after his first UWC experience, he returned with a more clear-cut victory. In an early ‘fight of the year’ candidate, Dodson and Jose Villarisco went back and forth in a way that should make everyone excited about the flyweight division. Fighting at his natural weight, Dodson stayed in almost constant motion throughout the fight, exploding in spurts of strikes and slams. This did not stop Villarisco, who was making his MMA debut after a muay thai career. Villarisco continued to walk him down and press the action. In the end the judges saw it 29-28 and 30-27 (twice) all for Dodson.
After the fight Dodson said that he looked forward to competing in the flyweight division, “I feel like I stack up very well in the 125 lbs division. I feel like I can be much more dominant at 125.” He also mentioned Rambaa Somdet and Ulysses Gomez as names he would like to fight going forward.
Richie Hightower vs. Marcus Foran
It seemed as if the comeback tour for TUF 6 veteran Richie Hightower had begun, but then it was announced that the fight had been ruled a no contest due to accidental strikes to the back of the head. Foran was in deep on a single leg when Hightower unleashed a flurry of elbows that dropped his opponent to the canvas. The strikes were ruled illegal.
Despite the fight’s result, Hightower looked the best he has in several appearances, and was surprisingly strong defending takedowns. He said that, “I thought it could be a war for 15 minutes, so I really trained for that.” Hightower also indicated that “185, to be honest, is a little too heavy” and his next fight will be at welterweight.
Herbert Goodman vs. Ron Stallings
Goodman, a former running back for the Green Bay Packers, was dominating the fight with takedowns and ground control. With 20 seconds to go in the first round, he let his opponent back up, against the urging of Robbie Lawler from the corner. As he shot in for another takedown, Lloyd Irvin product, Ron Stallings, caught him with a beautifully timed knee that put Goodman out cold. The fight was called with only 4 seconds left in the first round. A very impressive performance by Stallings, who improved his professional record to 7-3-1.
John Doyle vs. Cody Donovan
After dispatching his opponent in only 15 seconds at the last UWC show, Cody Donovan was once again in a hurry. Donovan pounded out John Doyle from the mount. The fight was stopped at the 2:33 mark of the first round. The teammate of Nathan Marquardt has been extremely impressive in his last two performances and claims, “The best part of my game is my guard, and I haven’t even had a chance to show it yet.”
Donovan credits his training at High Altitude Martial Arts and Greg Jackson’s for his victory, “When you’re training against top guys, it doesn’t matter who your opponent is.” He was originally scheduled to face NCCA wrestling champion Phil Davis. Donovan indicated it was a fight he was still interested in, “As a fighter I want to test myself, so sure I think a wrestler of that caliber would be a great test for me.”
Iman Achhal vs. Felice Herrig
Perhaps knowing that she would be at a striking disadvantage Iman Achhal stayed clinched against Felice Herrig for almost the entire fight. It proved to be an impressive strategy, since the kickboxing veteran could not create space to strike. Whenever there was space, Herrig would unleash vicious combinations which created a large mouse under Achhal’s left eye. Achhal showed her dominance whenever the fight went to the ground, as she almost finished the fight with both a guillotine and a rear naked choke. In the end the judges saw it 29-28 for Herrig and 29-28 (twice) for Achhal.
After the fight Achhal said that she would tell any woman in her native Morocco to, “do what you really feel like doing” referencing her escape from an arranged marriage in her native country. On the victory she said, “it really hasn’t set in yet, I’m just waiting for my mojito.”
Levon Maynard vs. Kyle Baker
In a fight between two UWC veterans with a reputation for throwing down, many people expected a war. The fight did not disappoint. Both fighters seemed content to fight in the clinch. Maynard continually landed knees, while Baker worked the body with strikes. Towards the end of the second round Baker took over. He landed a Superman punch, a jumping knee, and then a combination flurry that ended the fight 2:57 seconds into the second round.
Baker feels with the victory he will begin to get some respect, “I’m motivated all the time by all these promoters hating on me. Everyone thinks I’m not going to win, but I’m going to come in and put on a show every time.” Baker also announced that he will be fighting UFC veteran Drew Fickett in Virginia Beach on April 18th.
Manny Okorie vs. Kris McCray
In the first fight of the night, Kris McCray handed Manny Okorie a deflating debut loss. After fighting off the rear naked choke attempt once, Okorie could not prevent it the second time. McCray softened his opponent with some ground and pound and then sunk the choke deep under his opponents chin to seal his second victory in as many fights.
After the fight McCray said, “I feel the best opponent is yourself, if you’re training to beat yourself everyday.” He continued, “I love fighting in my hometown. It is a lot of pressure, but [there are] no great rewards without that pressure.”
UWC: MAN ‘O’ WAR quick results:
- Kris McCray def. Manny Okorie by Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) rd 1
- Kyle Baker def. Levon Maynard by TKO (Knees and Punches) rd 2
- Iman Achhal def. Felice Herrig by Decision (Split) rd 3
- Cody Donovan def. John Doyle by TKO (Punches and Elbows) rd 1
- Ronald Stallings def. Herbert Goodman by KO (Knees) rd 1
- Richie Hightower def. Marcus Foran by No Contest rd 2
- John Dodson def. Jose Villirisco by Decision (Unanimous) rd 3
- Jamal Patterson def. Antwain Britt by Submission (Guillotine Choke) rd 1
- Mike Easton def. Justin Robbins by Submission (Guillotine Choke) rd 3
(Note: Please continue to check back with us at PRO MMA (promma.info) for pictures, press conference audio, and more on Ultimate Warrior Challenge Man ‘O’ War.)