HFC Quick Results.
Ryann Spann (5-0) defeats Randy McCarthy (2-3) via unanimous decision.
DJ Fuentes(9-9) defeated Cody Williams (7-5) via unanimous decision.
Jamall Emmers (5-1) defeats Brett Ewing (4-6) via unanimous decision.
Luis Vega (10-4) defeated Booker Arthur (3-4) via split decision.
Jose Flores (2-0) defeated Justin Salinas (1-2) via submission (kneebar) at 1:59 of the first round.
Sam Guardiola (2-1) defeated David Salazar (1-5) via submission (armbar) at 1:09 of the first round.
Joshua Strodtbeck (1-0) defeated Michael Rosenberg (0-6) via unanimous decision.
Eddie Wittern (1-0) defeated Freddy Ramos (0-1) via submission (straight-armbar) at 0:23 of the first round.
Joel Scott (1-1) defeated Miguel Saenz (1-3) via split decision.
The main event of JC Promotions event at the Harlingen Field was a fight contested for the new Hero Fighting Championship middleweight title. Out of El Paso, TX, Randy McCarthy, fell short when he competed against the undefeated Ryann Spann, who was fighting out of Beaumont. The first round started off hot, as both fighters had a wild exchange, where they both landed, but Spann got the better of those strikes. McCarthy went for the takedown and got it, but Spann got back up. Spann tried working in a guillotine choke but couldn’t get it. Spann did get a sharp right and an uppercut on McCarthy. Spann landed a bodykick and headkick. A clinch was initiated, and Spann took McCarthy down to the slippery mat. From the half-guard position, Spann attempts a kimura but cannot lock it in as the time expires for the first frame. In-between rounds, the doctor checks on McCarthy’s nose, as it looks busted. McCarthy quickly takes Spann down as round two opens, but Spann floats over, and goes for a guillotine choke. It doesn’t work, but Spann gets on top, in half-guard position. McCarthy lands some strikes from the bottom, and tries to get a kimura, but Spann won’t allow it. Spann starts landing some good ground and pound from half-guard. McCarthy gets up, and tries to shoot, but they clinch. McCarthy takes him down from there, tries to crossface him, but Spann slips out from behind, and start kneeing him. McCarthy shoots but Spann ends up on top as the round ends. The final round, of the final fight, starts with Spann throwing a Superman punch. McCarthy gets a clinch, but Spann uses that to get the takedown, and be on top via half-guard again. Spann lands some rights on McCarthy’s face and body, before the fight gets stood back up. McCarthy lands a left, but Spann responds with several kicks and punches. A headkick by Spann, leads McCarthy into getting the takedown. However, Spann reverses to get on top, securing half-guard. Spann tries to take McCarthy’s back, for a choke, but can’t get it. He goes after the arm, but Spann slips off, as the round closes. All three judges had the fight 30-27 for the Beaumont native.
Regional attraction DJ Fuentes had a great showing against Beaumont’s Cody Williams for the Hero Fighting Championship bantamweight crown. But in the first round, the Edinburg-native had a slow start against Williams. Williams started off the round by landing a good combo. He lands some good kicks as well, both on DJ’s leg and body. Williams tries to guillotine choke him but it doesn’t work, but he uses that to take Fuentes down. They get back up, and they clinch. Williams lands some good knees to the body from the clinch, to close what was a good round for him. The first thing that caught your attention of the second round was Fuentes timing a perfect uppercut on Williams as he was shooting for a takedown. Williams was hurt, and Fuentes went after him landing some good punches. Williams then takes him down, tries to do an inverted-triangle-armbar, but Fuentes escapes, and they both clinch against the cage. Williams throws a kick, but it’s caught, and Fuentes answers back with another great uppercut. Williams is hurt again, and Fuentes goes after him with some hammerfists (some of which looked illegal). Williams is trying his best to take him down but Fuentes ends up on top, finishing the round strong with some ground and pound. Williams throws a legkick, that Fuentes counters with another well-timed uppercut. Fuentes then follows that up with a right. Fuentes slips after a kick, and they clinch. Williams slips in such a ridiculous way that it looks like Mr. Perfect bumping all over the place for Bret Hart at WWF SummerSlam 1991. Was the mat covered from Slip ‘n Slide material? Williams shoots but Fuentes from the front-headlock position, tries to choke, but nothing is there. He lets go, and then hits a nice combo. A left hook from Fuentes connects, and he follows that up with another uppercut. Williams rushes in, but it doesn’t work, and round three comes to an end. Fuentes starts off the round by doing what had worked previously — combinations. Fuentes also lands a good body shot, then a legkick. He uses a teep to push Williams back. Williams throws a right, and Fuentes answers back with a glancing headkick. Fuentes then lands a solid kick to Williams’ body. Williams gets a punch in, but Fuentes lands some good legkicks, as Williams tries to rush in with strikes as round four ends. In round five, Williams shoots for a takedown, briefly gets Fuentes’ back. Fuentes scrambles out of that, and goes for a guillotine. Doesn’t work, and then an armbar attempt follows. That fails too, and both are back up. After some legkicks, Fuentes lands another solid uppercut. Both are trying to land good strikes, but it’s hard to get your footing on a mat like this one at the Harlingen Field. Williams rushes forward for a takedown, but both get back up as the round ends. All three judges had it 49-46 for DJ Fuentes.
The Hero Fighting Championship featherweight crown was decided when San Antonio’s Jamall Emmers clashed with Austin’s Brett Ewing. The fight begins with a clinch, where both land some strikes before Emmers scores the takedown. Ewing is landing some strikes off his back, and then throws up a triangle on Emmers. The Austin-native can’t quite get his ankle behind his knee to secure the choke, but he uses the triangle to control Emmers, and land some vicious elbows to the head for the remainder of the round. Round two starts off with some strikes, but the slippery mat is making it hard to tell what is actually landing strongly. Emmers gets another takedown, that leads to Ewing trying an armbar attempt, but that fails. Both get back up, and Emmers lands some knees from the clinch. Emmers gets a takedown, but both get back up quickly. Ewing seemed to hurt himself with a legkick he threw, and the round ends with both fighters slipping and sliding all over the mat. A quick one-two hurts Ewing. Then a straight left lands hard again. After a brief break cause of a low-blow, Emmers lands a left hook that hurts Ewing. Ewing responds by taking Emmers down, but he gets back up. They clinch up against the cage, where a right hand lands on Ewing. The fight comes to an end, and the San Antonio-native walks away with the 29-28, unanimous decision victory.
A week doesn’t go by when you don’t have a controversial split decision in combat sports. Booker Arthur came all the way from Rusk, TX to take on Brownsville’s Luis Vega. Right after the seconds start ticking away in the first round, Arthur throws a kick, that is caught by Vega, and used to take the Rusk-native to the mat. While Vega is on top, he doesn’t really do much with the advantage that he has. After a couple of minutes, which featured very little ground and pound, the fight is back up. During a striking exchange, Arthur rocks Vega badly, and then takes him down to the mat as the time for the first stanza expires. After some strikes are exchanged, Arthur gets the takedown. Vega uses some 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu techniques to control Arthur on the mat before the fight is stood back up. Arthur gets a takedown, but is reversed, so Vega winds up on top as the round comes to an end. Now in the third round, it becomes very apparent that the mat is seriously limiting both men’s striking capabilities. Arthur appeared to hurt him with a left, or maybe Vega just slipped. Arthur takes him down, and takes his back. From there, he starts landing good strikes as the fight closes. It’s three 29-28 cards, one for Arthur, and two for Vega, as he walks away with the controversial split decision.
Unlike David Salazar, this Mission-native walked away with a win in his column. Jose Flores took on Eagle Pass’ Justin Salinas in a catchweight bout. Flores took him down to start off, but the fight quickly got back up. Flores takes him down again, probably with the help of the slippery mat. Flores goes for what can be best described as a Pancrase-style (meaning just going for it with reckless abandon) kneebar. It worked! Salinas tapped out at 1:59 of the first round. That kneebar wasn’t the only thing Flores went for — he also proposed to his girlfriend at cageside. She must have been impressed with that leglock cause she accepted. “A match made in chain-link heaven,” said the cage announcer afterwards.
In bantamweight competition, Pharr’s Sam Guardiola faced off against Mission’s David Salazar. The bout opened with Guardiola throwing a knee, which caused either a knockdown or a slip, as Salazar went down quickly after that. Guardiola sliced through the guard, and worked his way around Salazar for an armbar attempt. He lost it, and Salazar ended up on top. Guardiola’s guard was active, and he caught Salazar in a triangle from the bottom. The PSJA North graduate quickly transitioned to an armbar, forcing the Mission native to tap out at 1:09 of the first frame.
On the day before Groundhog Day, Bulverde’s Joshua Strodtbeck and McAllen’s Michael Rosenberg gave us an MMA-version of the film Groundhog Day, but without the creativity. In this super-heavyweight bout, the two clinched, over, and over, and over again. Strodtbeck landed short strikes — knees, elbows, and punches — on Rosenberg for nine-straight minutes. It wasn’t pretty, it wasn’t fun, but Strodtbeck was dominating Rosenberg badly. In the final minute, Strodtbeck hurt Rosenberg with a knee, but he couldn’t put him away. Clear 30-27, all across the board, for the fighter from Bulverde.
At a rather unusual 215 lbs catchweight, McAllen native Freddy Ramos stepped into the very slippery cage against Forthood Judoka Eddie Wittern. My tocayo didn’t waste any time as he rushed forward to take Ramos down to the mat. From a side-headlock position, he forced a straight-armbar on Ramos via legscissors, and Ramos had no choice but to tap out at 23 seconds into the very first round.
In the opening bout, a 150 lbs catchweight between Rio Grande City’s Miguel “Mike” Saenz and Port Arthur’s Joel Scott went the distance. Scott takes Saenz down quickly, getting in a little bit of ground and pound, before advancing to side control. Scott briefly advances to a crucifix position, before Saenz scrambles back up. Scott thinks about going for a guillotine before letting go, as both get back up to their feet. Scott takes him down again, and the round ends with Scott on top. The second round opens with a spinning back fist by Scott, and some light kicks by Saenz. After some strong lefts from Scott, Saenz hits a glancing headkick. A right from Saenz drops Scott. After a brief break from the official due to a low-blow, Scott takes Saenz down, gets half-guard, and then the mount. Saenz scrambles out of that, gets back up, only to be taken down by Scott again, who manages to secure mount. From that position, Scott goes for the armbar as the round comes to an end. Round three begins with a body kick by Saenz, and a headkick. Another takedown from Scott, but Saenz gets up. Saenz hits some knees to block the takedowns, and then takes Scott down. He hits some brief ground and pound, as the fight closes. Scott walks away with the close split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) win.