What happened with HometownMMA?

Wow.  Where do we even begin?

In short, we grew too fast, too quick.

We were running everything off of spare time and our own spare dime.  And without money coming into the business, we were quickly burning through personal savings, and in turn, got frustrated with the site, the coverage, the industry and each other, very quickly. Thus not allowing us to have the cash flow to continue to travel out-of-town to cover fighters, fights and promotions.

It seemed as if everyone wanted us to cover them, but not many would help us promote the coverage we gave them to grow our base, which would have allowed us to ask for advertising money.  We also found the lack of support from promoters helping us to get to their event efficiently and giving us the access we needed to cover it appropriately.  Trust us.  The blame definitely doesn’t land on our readers, the fighters or promotions we covered.  It falls on us.  We didn’t know what we had, when we had it.  And therefore, didn’t execute appropriately.

During our hiatus, we re-evaluated what we wanted from this site, where we wanted to take it and how to get there.  Hopefully, this time around with the support of the MMA community, we’ll do a much better job representing our interests, as well as yours.

We’ve changed some things here at HometownMMA.  Especially the way we’re going to cover events, fighters, promotions and the local scene. Jump over to our about page to learn about the new “us”.

We are looking forward to the future of HometownMMA and the local scene.  A lot of good things are happening in South Carolina MMA and we’re proud to be a small part of that.  Especially with the recent success of Justin Scoggins, Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson and the addition of Sara McMann to the UFC, just to name a few.

Please keep checking back, sharing our conversations, responding to our editorials and submitting your own work to be published.  This is a fight we’d love to have your support in.

#everyfightcounts!

Warfare 7: Final Notes and Fight Card

For the world to see…

For the first time in Warfare history, last night’s weigh-ins were streamed live via YouTube. Based on the reaction we saw on Twitter, it was a much appreciated addition. We can’t say enough about the way Andy Hall is growing Warfare and improving the product exponentially with each card. Can you imagine what Warfare 10 will be like?!?

Priorities in line…

Jeff Loken, who will be making his Warfare debut against Warfare veteran Aubrey Rion, was a little late getting to the weigh-ins last night. He had to finish up a final exam on a hotel computer before making his way over to Broadway Louie’s. After almost a 2 year layoff to earn a degree, we’re excited to see Jeff back in the cage.

On the road again…

Jomo Lucas and Team Rockbottom are becoming as well known in the Myrtle Beach area as the fighters who train here. Making the trip down from Virginia for every Warfare card, they always bring a good crowd and game fighters. With four Team Rockbottom fighters on the card tonight, Dreon Martin, Eric Belcher, J.R. Rumley and Somner Martin, Virginia will be well represented. Fans are also guaranteed to see four exciting fights out of these guys!

Pan-American Excellence…

Trevor Barnes tried to talk to Flyweight Title contender Jacob Hebeisen about his success at the IBJJF Pan-American Games during the weigh-ins and Jacob was quick to downplay the question. We looked into exactly what Jacob accomplished at the Pan American Games and here’s what we found out:

  • Finished 1st in Purple Belt Adult for his weight class in 2010
  • Finished 3rd in Purple Belt Adult for his weight class in 2011

The bottom line is that Jacob Hebeisen has an elite BJJ game, even if he doesn’t want to talk about it.

Tank’s new home…

Justin “Tank” Scoggins came to the weigh-ins decked out in American Top Team gear and announced to the crowd that he has relocated to Florida and is now calling American Top Team his home. After doing two training camps at Jackson’s MMA with famed coach Greg Jackson, Justin finished up his training camp for this Flyweight Title fight at American Top Team. We hope to bring you more insight into how this decision went down in the coming week. We send our sincere congratulations to Justin on finding a great new home!

Tomar’s fighting who?!?!

In the biggest surprise of the night, it was announced that the planned opponent for local legend Tomar Washington was unable to get cleared for the fight. Tomar, having trained tirelessly for this fight, was still eager to fight on this card at the House of Blues. Being that South Carolina does not allow for a last minute MMA bout to be sanctioned, a full rules Muay Thai fight was the best option. Now the only issue is finding an opponent on such short notice. How about Walker Vivian, one of Tomar’s regular training partners? Sure, why not? We can not wait to see this fight.

Quote of the night…

“Google me.” – ‘Kid Khaos’ Charles Bennett

Or you can just read the Primer we put together on him earlier this week to get caught up.

Full Fight Card

Marty Meunier vs. Eric Belcher

Jeremiah Scott vs. Christian Patterson

J.R. Myers vs. Dreon Martin

Cara McCreedy Dickey vs. Amy Coleman

Jeremiah Golda vs. J.R. Rumley

Aubrey Rion vs. Jeff Loken

Jesse Schneider vs. Quntin Thomas

SC 170 Lb Title Bout

Cody Jones vs. Kreed Bateman

Amos Collins vs. Somner Martin

Full Rules Muay Thai

Tomar Washington vs. Walker Vivian

Warfare World Flyweight Title Bout

Justin Scoggins vs. Jacob Hebeisen

Main Event

Ronnie Rogers vs. Charles Bennett

MMA Show Episode 7

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://www.hometownmma.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/photo-e1341614624776.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Asher Blocker is a 29-year-old entrepreneur, martial artist, and MMA enthusiast from Myrtle Beach, SC. He began training the Striking Arts in 2004 with Muay Thai World Champion Maurice Travis. In 2006, he started training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Shane Briggs (Relson Gracie Black Belt). In addition to being a Relson Gracie Purple Belt, he has also been the Head Kickboxing Instructor at Relson Gracie Myrtle Beach for the past 3+ years, coached & cornered fighters for 20+ MMA fights, does color commentary for Warfare Fighting Championships (FOX Sports), and hosts a monthly web program called “The MMA Show.” He also just recently received his Black Belt in a Virgin Martial Art known as “being awesome.”[/author_info] [/author]

 

MMA Show Episode 7: Warfare 7 Countdown Show

 

Primer: Charles “Kid Khaos” Bennett

It’s rare to hear words like legend and icon used for a fighter who’s career winning percentage is 49.05%. When you’re talking about Charles “Kid Khaos” Bennett (better known as Krazy Horse) though, the unexpected has basically become expected. Andy Hall, Warfare’s CEO, has secured Kid Khaos for the main event of Warfare 7 against Ronnie “Bam Bam” Rogers at lightweight. With as young as MMA is in South Carolina, we think it’s important to make sure newer fans understand just how awesome it is to get to see the former Krazy Horse live at the House of Blues on Friday night in Myrtle Beach. Here’s a quick primer and some videos to catch you up on Charles Bennett.

  • Kid Khaos has fought all across the world against some of the greatest fighters in the world and fights as often as he can. Having 53 professional fights is impressive in its own right. Then you start reading the list of opponents and come across names like Drew Fickett, Takanori Gomi, Jeff Curran, Rich Clementi, Yoshiro Maeda, KJ Noons, and Urijah Faber.
  • He’s been fighting professionally since 1999. For perspective, more than one of the fighters competing at Warfare 7 were still in elementary school.
  • He’s as infamous in the sport as he is famous. Multiple run-ins with the law have presented roadblocks in his career and were somewhat of a black eye for MMA.

 

Here’s his EliteXC fight against KJ Noons…

And his after-fight speech… (NSFW language)

Finally we’ll leave you with Krazy Horse’s craziest moment, a backstage fight ChuteBox’s Cristiano Marcello. As you can see in this video, Bennett ends up out cold. In interviews since the incident, Kid Khaos claims he awoke and KO’d Wanderlei Silva.

So as you can see, the unexpected is expected from Charles “Kid Khaos” Bennett. You do not want to miss the chance to see him live at Warfare 7. There’s no way to guess what you might miss if you aren’t there. #EveryFightCounts

“Tank” back at the Beach

Tank it’s been too long since we’ve talked! We’re only a week away from Warfare 7 and your Flyweight Warfare World Title Fight against Jacob Hebeisen. Safe to say this is the biggest fight in your career?

Absolutely. Hebeisen is a tough ass guy who’s been in the game for a while and has a pretty impressive jiu-jitsu resume. This is the next level of competition, and I can’t wait to continue dominating my way through.

You went out and worked with Greg Jackson again for this training camp. How did that go and was it easier being that it was your second time out there?

Yeah it was definitely easier. The guys knew me, there was no “feeling out” process. Getting my diet on point was easier. It was comfortable, and I was able to dive head first into training

What would winning the Warfare World Title mean to you?

Man it will mean a lot. This will be something no one has done yet. I’ll be breaking new ground for pro’s in the warfare organization and, I feel, for flyweights all across the east coast. It’s a great step in this long journey

You didn’t spend much time in the Warfare cage last time out, making quick work of Keith Hulin in dominating fashion. Can you give us any insight on how you see this fight playing out?

I see it playing out the same way. I go in with my gameplan and I execute it. Nothing will stop me. I’m on a mission to get this belt and prove I’m the best Flyweight fighter around. Which, in my mind there’s no doubt I am

Let’s switch gears now and talk about Justin Scoggins not Tank Scoggins for a few minutes. It’s clear you’re extremely driven and breathe MMA but what do you to escape that world for a little while and get recharged?

I play a lot of Xbox haha. Madden 13 is my game of choice. I also have a girlfriend who keeps me in line as has done so for going on 5 years. I’m actually pretty laid back. Like I said, when I’m not training it’s either Xbox, or just watching a movie or chillin with my chick

Your Dad, Chris Scoggins, is by far one of the best people we’ve met. Talk about him a little bit.

Man it’s hard to talk abt my dad just “a little bit”. The man has done everything for me and has absolutely made this dream possible. He got me to step on the karate mat when I was 3 years old and he has supported me all the way through. And of course my mom has too. Honestly, without her me and and my dad would both be lost, haha, our whole family would. I could not explain to u how amazing and supportive my entire family has been. My brothers and sister were my first training partners and have been there every step of the way. I’m blessed to have that

What’s something people would never guess about you?

I’m obsessed with Harry Potter. Unless u see some of my tweets abt HP or something idk if people would guess that haha. I’ve read the books like 12 times and watch the movies every chance I get.

Zombie Apocalypse hits…weapon of choice?

I’m gonna go with a samurai sword

We’ve noticed you got off Facebook. Miss it?

I still have my fanpage up. I’m trying to get a lot more attention on that

And finally, we know the TeamTank will be out in full force again on December 7th. What do you want to say to them?

Without all u guys I couldn’t do what I do. I appreciate each and every one of u and can’t wait to see u all December 7th. Don’t blink, it’s gonna be quick and exciting

Thanks for taking the time and good luck Tank! #EveryFightCounts

Thanks guys. I love me some Hometown MMA and y’all are doing great things for our awesome local athletes. Also wanna shout out to my boys at Fitness Edge MMA they got an awesome thing going over there with great talent, and I love training with them when I’m in town. Thanks to my sponsors Bad Co. Fight Gear, Ayash Inc., DeadFaceDown. Also thanks to everyone to helped me prepare for battle Revolution MMA in Inman, SC, Limestone Wrestling, Jackson/Winkeljohn MMA and American Top Team!

Warfare 6 photos

Click the “FS” button below to view the gallery in Full Screen!

Warfare_6

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Life,Westmoreland Style!

Meet Josh, Nikke and Maddy Westmoreland!

In a sport that some may call brutal, barbaric, and inhumane, take a look at the other side of the story…

In the Fall of 2005 Josh, from Greenville, SC and Nikke, from Columbus, OH met at Bluefield State College. Josh was on a baseball scholarship and Nikke on a softball scholarship.  They were married on Jan. 17, 2009 and not long after had beautiful little girl name Madison, which everyone affectionately calls “Maddy”.

What made you get into Mixed Martial Arts?

Josh: I was about 8 years old, I remember renting and watching UFC 1 on VHS tape with my dad.  My Cousins and I use to put on weight lifting gloves and box out in the back yard for fun! LOL  Fighting’s always something that was in my blood and in a crazy way, I enjoyed it.  Once I got a bit older and the sport went mainstream, I started training and knew it was for me. I feel like I can have a future in MMA and I love it.  If you love what you do then you never work a day in your life!

What details would you want the fans to know about You as a fighter?

Josh: I made my 155lb Amateur debut at Quest for Glory 2 against Caleb Reck.  I won a very tough 3 round decision which won us fight of the night!  I would say my biggest strength in the cage is heart.  For the past 6 months I have been training with Precision Fight Team and a total of 3 years of MMA. I would say a KO would be the best possible way to finish a fight. It’s like hitting a home run, when you connect, it’s the best feeling!

Can you explain to the fans, who have never been in the cage before, the emotions/mindset leading up to stepping into the cage?

Josh: Yes,  it is an experience unlike any other!  I’ve played college baseball and I have been in a ton of street fights but stepping in that cage with all eyes on you knowing that the guy across from you has prepared himself to destroy you, it’s an emotional experience like no other!  You are standing there in the stare down and adrenaline becomes a big factor.  I really didn’t have a lot of nerves coming into the fight.  I’m a pretty strong believer in, If you’ve prepared yourself then you have no reason to be nervous. Honestly, for me, it was more of an anxious and exciting feeling to get the fight on!  I faced some difficult adversity in this fight that I  wasn’t expecting to face, my wife and daughter came to mind every time I was up against it. #KnowWhatYouAreFightingFor is one of my favorite hashtags.  They gave me the strength to push through when I felt like nothing was left in the tank!  After the fight was a big Adrenaline dump from that 3 round war.

How would you rate your 1st performance in the cage against Caleb Reck?

Josh: The night of the fight was an emotion filled night for sure!  I was very thrilled with my performance!  I felt like I did good but I went into Brawl mode, which is want I didn’t want to do.  After watching the film, I’m happy I got the win and fight of the night, but I don’t feel like I fought anywhere near my best.  Of course, I don’t want to take anything away from Caleb, he put on a great fight.  Moving forward, I definitely want to  keep my composure better next time and learn from it. Caleb and I will both become better fighters.  The experience we both received at Quest for Glory 2 was second to none.

On October 25, 2012, Josh will be fighting on the Millenium Fight Promotions card. 

Josh and Nikke at American Top Team in Atlanta.

We spoke with Nikke Westmoreland about how she feels about Josh Fighting, what convinced her to be okay with it and she said…

Nikke: I had no Idea about the rules of MMA.  Before I met Josh I had only seen one UFC fight ever, Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz. After we start dating, I find out that he loves fighting and it scared me.  We later get married and I’m pregnant with Madison, he springs it on me that he wants to start fighting. And of course NO was my reaction!  “What if something happens to you?!?” It took me several times to be convinced to be on board with him fighting.  We went out with one of my friends from work to Quaker Steak and Lube and saw Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson.  She happened to be really good friends with him, so the conversation started. He sat down with us and we talked MMA.  Josh and I asked him lots of questions and he really helped change my perception of the sport.  He convinced me that it is a safe sport with great medical staff ringside. We went to Atlanta to watch a UFC fight and while we were there, Josh trained at American Top Team.  That was the first time that I got to see MMA training in person. It was awesome!  Their were tons of people there and everyone thought Josh was really good with lots of potential.  I’ve never met anyone with Josh’s dedication to training.  After he’s done training, a lot of times, we’ll wrestle around playfully and he will teach Maddy submissions.

Maddy practicing her Arm Bar!  Maybe she’ll be the next Ronda Rousey? She wins with cuteness factor alone!


Josh would like to thank God, Maddy and Nikke, Split Lip Fightwear, Precision Fight Team, HometownMMA, and all the fans/friends!

hot links

The Fighting Life: The Fire and the Darkness of Brian Foster (Bleacher Report)

– written by Duane Finley.

An outstanding feature on Brian that has a nice South Carolina mention. Can’t say enough about how well written and delivered this story is. Major props to Duane for doing all he did for Brian and for sharing it with us.

Sara McMann signs with Strikeforce (MMAjunkie)

Congratulations to Sara McMann on her deal with Strikeforce. She most recently won in the main event of Invicta 2. She trains with Team Revolution out of Spartanburg and regularly corners the Team Revolution fighters.

 

SC Native Jordan McDonald wins the 110lb Title at Tuff-N-Uff Festibrawl 3 in Las Vegas (mmarising.com)

Jordan McDonald took a unanimous decision victory and won the Tuff-N-Uff title this past Sunday night! Congrats to Jordan on the big win!

Wonderboy headed to Montreal for next UFC fight (MMAjunkie)

Simponsville, SC’s own Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson is now scheduled to return to the Octagon in November in Motreal.

 

Breakdown after the bell

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://www.hometownmma.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/photo-e1341614624776.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Asher Blocker is a 29-year-old entrepreneur, martial artist, and MMA enthusiast from Myrtle Beach, SC. He began training the Striking Arts in 2004 with Muay Thai World Champion Maurice Travis. In 2006, he started training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Shane Briggs (Relson Gracie Black Belt). In addition to being a Relson Gracie Purple Belt, he has also been the Head Kickboxing Instructor at Relson Gracie Myrtle Beach for the past 3+ years, coached & cornered fighters for 20+ MMA fights, does color commentary for Warfare Fighting Championships (FOX Sports), and hosts a monthly web program called “The MMA Show.” He also just recently received his Black Belt in a Virginia Martial Art known as “being awesome.”[/author_info] [/author]

Breakdown After the Bell:

“Warfare Fighting Championships 6:

Friday Night Fights”

What a fight night it was. Warfare 6 popped off on Friday, August 24th at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center. The card was the biggest and best ever put together in Myrtle Beach and more than lived up to the billing. I was privileged to be sitting cageside for the fights, and am honored to have the chance to share my perspective on them. Hope you enjoy.   

 

It is worth noting that these are strictly my own opinions, and could also be subject to change upon re-watching the fights.  

 

Undercard 

Chris Myers vs. Michael Griffin – 135 lbs

The night started out with a bang as Chris Myers disposed of Team Ninja product Michael Griffin in roughly 15 seconds, setting the tone for a dramatic night. Griffin no doubt was expecting to see a takedown attempt come his way early, due to Myers’s wrestling prowess and collegiate background. I expected Chris to shoot right off the bat. So did Team Ninja, and so did Michael Griffin. But the only thing he shot was a straight right hand, one that put Griffin in Lala Land. And to Myer’s credit, when he saw his man hurt, he went for the kill, and did so with urgency. Some fighters end up waiting half their career to get that often elusive knockout victory. Chris Myers, however, a wrestler at heart, got a huge KO in only his second fight. But it wasn’t just the element of surprise that won the day for Myers. He’s been working diligently on his standup over the last couple months with Fitness Edge MMA Muay Thai Coach Walker Vivian, and it certainly showed. And with his tireless work ethic and extensive competitive background, Chris Myers could indeed be something special. Pay attention to him.

Cody Frye vs. Matt Sarvis – 155 lbs

Our 2nd fight of the evening was almost as fast, as Matt Sarvis took down Cody Frye early in the opening frame, took his back, flattened him out, and choked him unconscious right in front of our commentary table. Credit to Matt Sarvis, who looked great, even in the short time we saw him in the cage. Cody Frye, on the other hand, had a real bad night. And if I were to make an honest assessment of him, I would say that he’s a good athlete, and really awesome guy; one with a whole lot of potential as well. But he is not doing the right things to win fights in this sport. He is taking fights on short notice and not getting the proper training he needs for MMA competition. He is certainly not lacking in heart, skills, or character. But he is lacking in technical acumen, specifically in the ground game. Period. And the only reason I say this is because he could be good at this given the proper preparation, and to be quite frank about it, I like him as a person and don’t want to keep seeing him get choked out in the cage. If wants to continue to take fights, and more importantly, win those fights, he needs to change some things. But again, all talk and all credit should go in the direction of your winner, Matt Sarvis, who I hope to get a chance to see in the near future… hopefully, for more than a minute.

Erik Harris vs. Lawrence Dennis – 155 lb State Championship

Our third bout was a bloody affair, as Lawrence Dennis was able to continually scrape Erik Harris with sharp left hands in route to an impressive victory. Harris simply couldn’t deal with the range and timing of Dennis. And by the end of the second round, couldn’t see the strikes coming his way due to the blood coming from his eyes. He was game, however, and stayed in there. But by the time he realized he needed a takedown, it was too late. Dennis had found his range and Harris was puzzled, bloody, and starting to get tired. Many people think that reach is an over emphasized stat when it comes to MMA, but it certainly wasn’t in this one, as Dennis used it to his advantage, and Harris simply couldn’t get past it. Tough hard fight by both guys, though. Hats off to them.

Adam Ronsick vs. Trevor Barnes – 145 lbs

I favored Trevor in this fight simply from a stylistic perspective. I thought Trevor would have the wrestling to stay away from Adam Ronsick’s vaunted ground game, and perhaps get a lot done in the striking department. And it looked like this was the case, as Barnes started the first round with two heavy low kicks, and a big right hand, all of which landed cleanly. Ronsik knew he had to get the fight to the floor, and he found a way, as Trevor found himself in Ronsik’s guard early in the first. Trevor tried to push down on the hips, but to no avail, as the lanky Ronsik was still able to secure a high guard, and lock up a reverse triangle. And while Trevor escaped, he was is Ronsik’s world, and the subsequent scramble that ensued led to Adam Ronsick taking Barnes’s back and finishing the fight with a rear-naked choke. Very impressive fight for Ronsik, as he shows a ground game that is lethal from all positions. And being a big jiujitsu fan myself, I really appreciated the dynamism of this kid’s game.

 

Jason Faglier vs. Brandon Bushaw – 135 lb State Championship

In the fifth bout of the evening, Jason Faglier showed off some impressive grappling chops, submitting Brandon Bushaw with a beautiful transition to an armbar early in the first round. Bushaw did what he does early in the fight, and looked good doing it, as he secured a nice takedown against the cage. But once they got there, Faglier was able to capitalize on what has clearly shown itself as Bushaw’s weakness: submissions. Bushaw is going to continue to run in this problem, as it appears to be a fundamental issue in his game. His takedowns are excellent, but when he uses them in the cage, it puts him into an area that, as of now, is need of improvement. This shouldn’t be too hard, however, as Brandon is a smart dude with the resources around him to improve upon this area of the game. As far as Jason Faglier, I was very impressed with his poise, and obviously his jiu-jitsu game. I really look forward to seeing him again.

Nick Wesley vs. Chris Brunetti – 155 lb SouthEast Regional Championship

After several quick ones… Nick Wesley and Chris Brunetti gave us what I thought was a great five round fight for the State Championship at 155 pounds. It was one that saw late replacement Brunetti get the nod from the judges, but also one that I thought Nick Wesley should have gotten. Either way, credit to Brunetti for fighting an excellent fight. He’s a stud. It was my first time watching him, and I was really impressed. And I want to be clear about the fact that I don’t think it was a “robbery” or anything to that degree. But I did think Wesley should have gotten the nod, and to be frank, it was a fight that did a great job in highlighting one of the many problems with judging in this sport, especially at this level. The problem: Most judges are people who have never trained in Mixed Martial Arts, and more specifically grappling.

Allow me to explain… It’s fairly easy for a judge to determine who is winning when it comes to the striking department. Picking out the guy that is landing the most strikes, as well as the most damaging ones, is typically pretty obvious. The grappling game, however, is a whole different story. If you’ve never trained, you have no real tangible idea of what’s going on in particular positions, who’s in trouble, and who isn’t. This is why takedowns are scored by judges particularly high… because they are easy to see. Once they get to the ground, if you have not trained before, things become a little less clear. So judges, especially at the lower levels, simply reward the guy who is on top. Which, quite simply, is a fundamental lack of understanding about the fighting as a sport, and the concepts behind it. I don’t feel like this particular fight was the best example of that, but it did stick out to me as the main difference in what was otherwise a pretty close and competitive fight. Wesley says he’s moving to 145, and he should. Chris Brunetti snagged the title in this one, and I hope to see him come back to Myrtle Beach and defend it, as he seems to be a pretty talented dude.

Justin Sumter vs. Trey Moss – 185 lb SouthEast Regional Championship

This fight was one a lot of people were anticipating, and it didn’t disappoint. In the breakdown leading up to the fight, I wrote the following: “In my opinion, Justin Sumter needs to keep this thing standing, and that will be exactly his strategy. Striking is what he likes to do. And he should. With an aggressive southpaw style, and with some obvious power to go with it, you can bet he’s looking to do two things: stop takedowns and put hands on Trey Moss. On the opposite side, Moss should, and most likely will, be going to his primary strength in this fight: a nasty takedown game. And coupled with some mean ground-and-pound, Trey Moss’s gameplan should be to do what he does: slam this dude to the mat and beat the hell out of him until he quits. Can he do this to Justin Sumter? Well, I guess we’ll find out.” In summary, to win this fight, Justin Sumter needed to get something done early, and get it done with his hands. And he did just that. He came out aggressive as usual, bringing the fight directly at Trey Moss. He hurt him early, and when Moss tried to secure the single leg, Sumter did an excellent job of shucking him off, and coming back with some lightning-fast strikes, to put Trey away in roughly 15 seconds (that may be wrong, either way… it was fast). It was one of the most explosive finishes of the night, and one that few were expecting to go down in such a fashion. Justin Sumter has now had two fights in Myrtle Beach, and has been in the cage less than a minute. This is normally when I would say it’s time for him to take a step up in competition, but that’s actually what this fight was. Trey Moss is a good fighter, and has a chance to be very good. He just made a mistake, and Justin Sumter, had the poise, and the ability to capitalize on it. Hat’s off to him for providing a moment that was, to say the least, electric.

Cliff Thompson vs. Marvin Skipper – 205 lb SouthEast Regional Championship

After a bit of a hiatus from competition, Marvin Skipper showed no ring rust in dispatching late replacement Cliff Thomson relatively early in the first round with his patented guillotine choke. Thomson’s fundamental problem in this fight was that, stylistically, he prefers to clinch with guys and work from there. The problem: With his grappling game, coupled with his ridiculous strength, the clinch is not a place you ever want to be with Marvin Skipper. And once I saw that this was where Thomson was content to spend his energy, it was pretty clear to me that it was only going to be a matter of time before Marvin secured something. He did show a nice wrinkle in his game this time out, however. As Cliff Thomson fought off the first couple choke attempts by keeping good posture, Skipper began shooting some knees to the body of his opponent, to get him to lower his head. And it worked, as the third knee caught Thomson pretty good, giving Skipper just the window he needed. Once he felt he had it, he jumped guard, and it was a wrap. Good to see Marvin back in there, and he provided one of the more fun moments of the night, as I handed him the mic in cage afterwards, and he proceeded to thank everyone he ever knew. It was pretty cool, classic Marvin, and everyone loved it. He also announced that this was going to be his last amateur fight, as he recently signed a contract to go pro after this one, a move that is probably the correct one at this point, as he’s starting to run out of challenges in this division as an amateur.

Joe Ray vs. Adrian Henderson – Interim Heavyweight State Championship

While Heavyweight Champion Mike “22” Barr is still out recovering from a torn Achilles tendon, two men who desperately want that fight competed to decide who gets a shot at the crown at Warfare 7. And what resulted was probably the most controversial decision of the night, as Henderson took the nod over Ray, and will now get a shot to avenge his prior loss to the champ. This is a fight Henderson has wanted for some time, feeling that his first performance against Mike Barr was effected by the fact that he took the fight on short notice, and that with a full and proper camp, will be able to change the outcome the next time around. Well, he’s going to get that opportunity now, and we’ll see if he’s right. I, however, don’t believe he deserves the shot based on this fight, as myself and many others in attendance had Joe Ray winning. It was, for sure, a close and competitive bout, but one that I frankly didn’t think Adrian Henderson did enough to win. He was able to take Joe down in the first and fifth rounds, but wasn’t able to do a whole lot once he got there, particularly in the fifth. But as I stated before, judges love takedowns, and often care more about that than meaningful offense. Which is not to say that Henderson didn’t have meaningful offense, because he did. It’s just that the majority of the fight was spent on the feet, and in my humble opinion, Adrian Henderson simply didn’t put enough offense together in rounds 2, 3, & 4 to win any of them. In rounds three and four in particular, he appeared to only throw strikes to keep Joe Ray off of him. Whereas Joe, while not landing a tremendous amount, was throwing and attacking  much more, walking his opponent down, and controlling the cage. But hey, that’s why they say don’t leave it in the hands of the judges. I think both guys are good fighters, and certainly am happy seeing either get the chance to face Heavyweight Champion Mike Barr or anyone else in the near future.

Main Card

Shane Crenshaw vs. Amos Collins – 145 lbs

In our highly-anticipated first professional fight of the night, hometown hero Amos Collins faced off against, Shane Crenshaw, a man certainly perceived to be the “villain” by the home crowd, not only for his comments at the weigh-in, but also for the general bad blood between the two combatants. And Shane Crenshaw was able to spoil the homecoming for Collins, garnering a doctor stoppage late in the 2nd round. In my breakdown leading up to the fight, I wrote the following:

“It isn’t easy to pick a winner in Collins-Crenshaw fight, but it’s probably the easiest one to see how the winner will get it done, since one looming question is likely to decide which fighter ultimately gets his hand raised: Can Amos Collins stop the Crenshaw takedown?” I didn’t believe this simply because the takedown game is Shane Crenshaw’s bread and butter, but also because Amos Collins is more of a top position grappler, and after seeing the way Crenshaw was able to pass the guard of Charlye Vivas in his last fight in Myrtle Beach, I knew that Amos would have major problems if he was forced to play off his back in this one. And due to Crenshaw’s heavy top pressure in the side control position, I figured Amos would also have a difficult time getting back to his feet once Shane got there. And indeed, it played out that very way in the cage. Collins, for the most part, was able to protect himself from taking too much damage, at least as far as volume. But Shane’s ability to control top position allowed him to drop a couple of well-timed, well-placed elbows that sliced up Collins pretty bad; the first over the eye, and the second (by far the worst of the two) underneath the eye, leading to the eventual doctor stoppage.  To Collins’s credit, he did stop a few takedown attempts over the course of two rounds, but when he did, he didn’t do what he needed to do to take control of the fight, which was make Crenshaw pay by putting hands on him. It appeared pretty obvious to me that after the first couple takedowns, Amos was leery of letting his hands go, afraid it would open him up for another takedown. And as my Jiu-Jitsu Coach Shane Briggs would say, “that’s the power of wrestling.”

All in all, in was a good fight, one marred a bit in some people’s eyes by some of the bad blood that ensued beforehand. But both gentlemen were respectful and complimentary of each other after the fight, and to be honest, that’s the game we’re in. Fighting is one of the most difficult things in the world you can do, and to get your head in the proper place to do combat of this sort, different guys have different mental approaches for success. Some fans understand, some don’t. But that, quite frankly, is a “you” problem. I don’t particularly care about the trash talk, and I see it for what it is. But I’d be lying if I didn’t say it often adds a bit of excitement and anticipation to the fight. But almost always, fighters settle their differences in the cage, earn each other’s respect, and shake hands at the end. As a fan, it’s important to make that distinction, and follow suit. Otherwise, you kinda become the guy that thinks pro wrestling is real. In my eyes, fighting is beautiful and artistic, but these aren’t politicians (w/ the exception of Chael Sonnen I suppose)… These are fighters, and fighters leave it the cage, just as these two professionals did on Friday night.

 

Keith Hulin vs. Justin Scoggins – 135 lbs

I didn’t include this fight on my breakdown prior to the event. And that was basically because I didn’t know a whole lot about Keith Hulin, and to be honest, I didn’t learn much about him from the fight either. Because Keith didn’t really get a chance to show anything, due to the absolute barrage of offense he got hit with from the opening bell. In roughly a minute, Justin “The Tank” Scoggins showed us why he was such a highly-touted prospect going into Warfare 6. He came into the fight immensely confident and it showed, leading off the bout with a beautiful spinning heel kick over the top, and though Hulin was able to block it, the crowd responded with a roar, and Hulin, I believe, instantly became completely defensive. Scoggins followed up by pushing his opponent against the cage and assaulting him with an array of knees and elbows that Hulin was able to withstand for a surprising amount of time without dropping. Keith Hulin showed his toughness hanging in there as long as he did, but he was simply far outmatched in this one. What I personally took from the fight was the following: Justin Scoggins is, indeed, for real.  At his young age, and with the guys he trains with, the sky is the limit for this kid. And this fight was one the fans all wanted to talk about after. Scoggins is the truth, and I’m looking forward to seeing him in the near future.

Shamar Bailey vs. Josh Williams – 170 lbs

In what was arguably the most dynamic and memorable performance of the evening, Josh Williams blew away many of those in attendance by defeating UFC-veteran Shamar Bailey in dominant fashion, in route to an armbar submission midway through the 2nd round. He controlled Bailey from the opening bell in a highly “professional” manner, in what was only his first professional fight. To say I was impressed would be an understatement. I thought he looked phenomenal. And while Williams certainly seemed to be the larger, stronger man in the cage, the dominant nature of the fight made appear that it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. Leading up to the fight, I asked the question, “Can Josh Williams swim with the sharks?” The answer: Josh can swim. And may very well be “the shark.” He is a physical beast, confident enough to believe he can win any fight, and humble enough to continue to get better. The sky is the limit for Josh Williams. Believe it.

Hector Urbina vs. Nissen Osterneck – 185 lbs

I expected Osterneck-Urbina to be a very good fight, a high-level fight, and an interesting matchup. I didn’t know it would be a war. And a beautiful, highly-competitive war at that, as Osterneck was able to garner the split decision victory. Not exactly sure how one judge gave it Urbina, as it seemed clear to me that Nissen won the last two rounds, but the right guy won nonetheless.  It’s also worth noting that I thought the 30-27 scorecard for Osterneck was a bit off as well. Nissen even agreed with that. But this fight wasn’t about winners and losers, it was about what they gave those in attendance. It was a special way to cap off the night, and a fight I stood up for the entirety of, as it was too suspenseful to for me to stay seated for any lengthy period. Both guys brought what I expected style-wise, but they both brought the “A-Game” version of those styles. The action on the ground was simply fantastic, as there were more scrambles and action on the floor than many of the other fights combined. Nissen’s offense was highlighted by some sweet half guard sweeps and escapes from the bottom, some solid knees from the clinch, a couple nice back takes, a beautiful rolling kimura off a takedown try by Hector, and couple sick submission transitions including a triangle to armbar to kneebar attempt.  Urbina was also impressive, many times nullifying the Osterneck guard in a manner I didn’t think was possible, landing some big shots both on the feet and the ground, and escaping almost every bad spot Osterneck put him in with surprising ease. I could talk forever about this fight, but I won’t. It was a great fight between two highly-skilled warriors, and I was honored to be cageside for it. Both men should be proud of what they gave the fans Friday night.

However, I would like to make one point regarding the perception of this fight by many of those in attendance that evening. Talking to many people in the days following the event, it seemed that there was a clear distinction between how this fight was viewed by the more casual fans and the fighters/coaches in the audience, and I wanted to take a second to address that separation. Almost across the board, fighters seemed to think the fight was amazing. But many of the fans commented that they thought it was a bit “sloppy.” To me, this is the classic difference between viewing a fight based on emotion and aesthetics rather than technical understanding. To put it simply… both guys got very tired in the fight. This was due to many things: the high level of participants involved, the crazy pace they were keeping, all the scrambles, etc. In other words, they conserved nothing, and let it all hang out. They did more “stuff” in that fight than any other fight on the card, and doing lots of stuff makes you tired. And while both dudes were winded, neither was “gassed.” The term “gassed” refers to when you “run out of gas.” In other words, you are so tired that you stop creating offense. These two never stopped that entire fight. They were gettin’ after it from bell to bell. And for me personally, I don’t care if my fighters “look tired.” I only care if they are fighting hard, creating offense, and doing things to win a fight. That is exactly what these two were doing, and lots of it.

 

Knockout of the Night: Justin Sumter & Chris Myers

Submission of the Night: Josh Williams

Fight of the Night: Hector Urbina vs. Nissen Osterneck

For more info, analysis, fight previews, interviews, and all that other jazz…. become a fan of “The MMA Show” on Facebook. And thanks to everyone for coming out. Can’t wait for the next one! 

Warfare 6: The Aftermath


You be the Judge

– Judging was, and still is a hot topic, from Warfare 6. With 3 fights going to decision, 2 were split decisions with wildly varying scores. In the Hector Urbina/Nissen Osterneck fight, two judges had it 30-27 Osterneck, while the dissenting judge had it at 29-28 Urbina. The other split decision occurred in the Joe Ray/ Adrian “A-Train” Henderson fight with 2 judges scoring it 49-46 for A-Train and the dissenter scoring it 48-47 for Ray. The one unanimous decision was, in our opinion the closest and toughest to call.  It saw Nick Wesley lose his his title to Chris Brunetti, and was scored 48-47 by all three judges. It had the least striking of all three fights that went to decision and was much more a grappling match.

It is a clear example of how young this sport is in South Carolina. Judging is an inexact science to begin with, so adding in the newness of Mixed Martial Arts was bound to create some varied results. Leaving a fight to the judges is always going to be a risky proposition.


What’s up Doc

– Warfare 6 saw a much more active presence from the cageside physician than we’ve seen in any other event we’ve covered. There were two stoppages called by the doctor and both were just. The interesting part came with the physician halting the fight during the action, as opposed the ref making that call. Caught us off guard the first time we saw the cage door open during a round. Safety first!


Leaving it in the cage

– Plenty was made of the intensity, volume, and frequency of trash being talked leading up to this fight card. As we expected, all the fighters involved left that all in the cage once a decision rendered in their fights. Joe Ray and Adrian Henderson shared a hug after the fight, and even shared a smile during the fight when A-Train attempted a head kick. Justin Scoggins and Keith Hulin were also quick to shake hands after their fight.

Amos Collins and Shane Crenshaw appeared to have more genuine tension between them, as it boiled over at both the official and public weigh-ins. Even when they were in the cage together waiting on introductions, the tension was palpable. After the fight, as everyone braced for Shane Crenshaw’s comments, we were treated to a gracious victor who was quick to praise Amos and downplay all the pre-fight trash as hype for the fight. Amos also made sure to credit Crenshaw on the victory and reinforce to the crowd that it was all behind them.


Heavyweight Hype

– Adrian Henderson and Mike Barr didn’t waste any time hyping their upcoming unification State Heavyweight Title fight. Mike entered the cage after A-Train won the title from Joe Ray and immediately stated that Joe Ray won the fight in his opinion. He went on revisit the first meeting between Barr and Henderson, that ended with Barr TKOing Henderson . By the time Barr was done talking, Henderson was asking for him to get some gloves on so they could take care of business right now!


You got that right!

– We can’t say enough good things about the production Omega Attire and Omega Dave put together for Warfare 6. It was a top notch production that was exactly what was needed to showcase the best fight card South Carolina has ever seen.


Statements made

Here are some major highlights we took away from Warfare6:

Nissen Osterneck shook off the ring rust well and clearly looks healthy and ready for another run in this sport.

Josh Williams is a legit talent with a really well rounded skill set. We are eager to see him make weight at 170lbs, but regardless of the weight he was obviously the better mixed martial artist Friday night.

Justin “Tank” Scoggins lived up to enormous hype train (that is very well conducted by his father Chris) and showed what a month at Greg Jackson’s camp can do for a fighter.

Marvin Skipper is ready for the Professional ranks. His skills in the cage are only outdone by skills on the microphone after the fight.

Lawrence Dennis has good hands and solid takedown defense.

Erik Harris has no quit in him.

You do not want Justin Sumter to punch you! “The Machine” still hasn’t spent 1 full minute fighting in the Warfare cage!

You do not want to go to the ground with James Ronsick! Three first round submission victories in 4 months.

Chris Myers can punch! We knew he had a great wrestling base but hadn’t seen his hands at all. We’ve seen them now.

And finally…

Andy Hall puts together outstanding events and Warfare 7 is sure to top Warfare 6!

We’ll be there ready because #EveryFightCounts!