Leroy Martinez defeated Saul Elizondo via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28).
Victor Martinez defeated Delis “Cuba” Borges via TKO (ground and pound punches) at 2:10 of the second round.
Gilbert Urbina defeated Jared Perez via TKO (ground and pound punches) at 2:44 of the first round.
Guilherme Farias da Costa defeated Travonne Hobbs via unanimous decision (30-26, 29-27, 29-27).
Eduardo Bustillos defeated Fabiano Rodrigues via TKO (punches) at 2:38 of the first round.
Sam Guardiola defeated Eliazar Rodriguez Chavez via submission (rear-naked choke) at 4:06 of the first round.
Elias Urbina, Jr. defeated Aaron Smith via submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:07 of the first round.
TGS Fight of the Night: Victor Martinez vs Delis “Cuba” Borges
TGS Submission of the Night: Sam Guardiola’s Rear-Naked Choke
TGS KO of the Night: Eduardo Bustillos’ Ground and Pound.
The final STFC of 2014 arrived the same week that produced a cold front, and some never ending rain. The main event was a clash between established STFC star Saul “El Mero Mero” Elizondo, of Gracie Raleigh, and rising prospect Leroy “El Guapo” Martinez, of Team Ferreira. A crack at the STFC Texas Bantamweight Championship was on the line when these two walked in to the McAllen Convention Center. A win would lead the victor to a brighter 2015. A loss would be a set-back, but both of these fighters are tough enough to bounce back when they stumble.
As Martinez did back in May, he once again showcased how far he’s come along in his striking and mixed martial arts game. He continues to grow, and in front of a raucous crowd, he defeated Saldivar via split decision. So far, this is the biggest win in Martinez’s young mixed martial arts career. Next stop, we will see Martinez take another step up in competition.
STFC 33 is currently scheduled to take place on February 27th. As far as this year goes, it’s been a fun year of local mixed martial arts action, and I’m very much looking forward to seeing what 2015 brings.
7. In the main event of STFC 32, Saul Elizondo, originally of Roma, returned to the Rio Grande Valley from North Carolina, to see where he stands in the current RGV MMA landscape. On the opposite side of the cage stood Leroy Martinez, of Mission, who was looking at adding a popular name in his resume of victories.
The opening frame begins with Elizondo landing a legkick and aiming for a punch. Another legkick by Elizondo, plus a front kick that misses. Martinez lands a pair of jabs, and a legkick. Elizondo connects with a punch and a pair of legkicks. Martinez hits a body shot, jab, and legkick. Elizondo attempts a Superman punch, but doesn’t seem like it hits, from my angle. Martinez counters a Elizondo kick with a punch, then lands a jab and a right hand. Martinez connects with a few more shots. Elizondo hits a legkick, and what looks like a superkick, Shawn Michaels-style. Both men go back and forth trading multiple legkicks, before Elizondo opens up with a pair of jabs. Martinez starts throwing with volume, and lands one hard, good punch on Elizondo. The Roma native goes for a headkick, and Martinez hits a pair of body shots. Elizondo throws a bodykick, and Martinez goes under with a legkick. Martinez opens up with a combo, and puts Elizondo against the cage. Martinez is now throwing a lot, and landing some good punches. They clinch, and Elizondo throws some knees and punches to get out of that predicament. Martinez lands a right hand. What was a MMA-striking heavy round ended with Elizondo attempting a kick.
A right by Elizondo opens the second frame, but Martinez pressure him against the cage and lands some punches. Elizondo gets out of there, and attempts what looks to be a grazing headkick. Martinez lands a good right punch, and a legkick. Both start trading legkicks, then while against the cage, Elizondo looks to land some significant punches on Martinez. While clinched, Elizondo landed a knee. The two started exchanging punches, and while it was at a difficult angle to see, it appeared that Martinez landed the better shots at that moment. Martinez aims with a jab, and connects. After a couple of punches by Martinez, the two clinch again. Martinez is trying to work in some body blows, while Elizondo nails two knees in the clinch. Martinez goes after Elizondo’s feet with some stomps in the clinch, and the Starr county fighter fights out of that, attempting a spinning back fist. They both ended up tangled up, and Elizondo seemed to want to go for a guillotine choke, but Martinez quickly frees himself. Martinez swings a bit wild but connects. Elizondo sneaks in an uppercut, and that leads to both clinching. Martinez lands some more body shots, while Elizondo tries some more knees to the body. Martinez now landing some more blows and foot stomps. Elizondo hits a sharp elbow, and some solid strikes to escape the clinch. With both back in the middle of the cage, Elizondo connects with a punch. Martinez comes forward to clinch, and takes Elizondo down to the mat, right as the round ends.
The final frame starts with a jab, and punch from Martinez. Elizondo connects with two good punches, and a bodykick. The two trade legkicks. Elizondo starts working his jab, and goes for a headkick. Martinez answers back with a good counter punch. Elizondo is back to the jab, landing a pair of them. Martinez hits two good punches. Elizondo works in a legkick and a front kick. Martinez goes up and down, with two punches; one to the body and the other one to the head. Martinez connects with a nice two punch combination. Elizondo lands a big left hand, but then, Martinez hits a big punch of his own. Elizondo has a nice body kick, and Martinez does one of his own, to his opponent’s leg. Loud chant for Martinez start building up. Martinez pressure Elizondo against the cage, lands some good punches and elbows there. Elizondo tries to kick Martinez away. Martinez with a good body shot, and Elizondo is back to the jab, landing two. Elizondo’s headkick is blocked, but he still hits the jab. Martinez goes after Elizondo’s body with a punch, but Elizondo lands a jab, or two. Nice right hand by Elizondo. Both start swinging, and Martinez takes him down as the time concludes. Rock N Roll James reads the scorecards — the first judge has it 29-28 for Martinez, the second has it 29-28 for Elizondo, and the final judge has it 29-28 for Martinez, awarding him the fight via split decision.
6. In the co-main event of the evening, rising local lightweight star Victor Martinez, of Pharr, tested his skills against Delis “Cuba” Borges, who was fighting out of Dallas. Martinez passed this test, in what turned out to be the fight of the night. Borges storms out with a headkick. He stomps the mat, trying to intimidate his opponent. Borges rushes at Martinez, clinches with him, and trips him down to the mat. In half-guard, Borges seems to attempt an arm-triangle, but he doesn’t get anywhere close to that. From half-guard, Borges moves to mount. Martinez tries to use the cage, with his feet, to push off, but Borges gets his back. Borges tries a rear-naked choke, although it looked more like a neck-crank. Martinez fights it off, gets up, and escapes that position. They get a wild scramble, exchange of sorts, and Borges falls down, and gets briefly hammered on. Borges gets back up, then goes back down, with Martinez looking down at him as the referee steps in to separate both fighters, sending them back to their corners.
In the second stanza, Borges attempts to come out aggressive one again, but Martinez lands huge punches, and Borges is back on his back. Borges looks hurt, but gets back up and tries to take Martinez down, but the Pharr native defends well. Martinez swinging away hard, and Borges tries a single leg. From that position, Martinez lands some vicious elbows, and then sprawls. Martinez then hits a knee on a grounded Borges, and transitions seamlessly into the mount. Martinez moves towards the back mount, then returns to his original position, before taking Borges’ back once again. Just like the previous fight, Martinez starts hammering away, Hughes-Gracie style, forcing the referee to step in at 2:10 of the second round. After the fight, Luke Flores stepped into the cage, and Martinez-Flores is the path we’re headed to in 2015.
5. In the STFC welterweight division, Weslaco East High School’s Gilbert Urbina squared off against Corpus Christi’s Jared Perez. Like his brother Elias earlier in the night, Gilbert showed an incredible amount of potential. Urbina clinches with Perez, and lands some good punches inside, including a nice uppercut. He clinches again to land a hard knee, and a solid punch. Urbina connects with a left, and then takes him down. This was the beginning of the end. Urbina starts raining down with hammerfists and elbows, while inside Perez’s guard. He passes to side control, then settles briefly for half-guard, where he lands some more strikes. Urbina gets up, and lands a few kicks on Perez’s legs. He winds up inside Perez’s guard again, and lands some more hard punches, before securing mount easily. Perez trying to hold on, while Urbina punches away. Perez turns over, and Urbina takes his back, ground and pounding him, Hughes-Gracie style. The referee finally stops it at 2:44 of the first round.
4. In the STFC lightweight division, Austin’s Travonne Hobbs returned to the STFC, to compete against Guilherme Farias da Costa, who is originally from Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil. This would be the first fight of the evening to go the distance. Costa opened the fight with a few kicks, and a unique stance. One legkick by Farias lands hard early on, and it’s a kick he will go to often during this fight. While clinched up against the fence, Hobbs hits a lowblow on Farias. The referee decides to restart the fight back in the middle of the cage. Farias lands a huge headkick. Hobbs connects with a punch to the body. Farias hits a legkick, and Hobbs gets a bodykick. Farias comes back with one of his own, and the round ends with Hobbs swinging wildly, attempting to land a punch on Farias.
In the second round, Hobbs starts off attempting some kicks of his own. One lightly lands. Farias lands two huge legkicks of his own. Another low blow by Hobbs causes a break in action. Hobbs lands two punches when the fight re-starts. Farias hits a headkick and legkick. Hobbs hits a couple of good punches, leading Farias to clinch with him against the fence. Farias throws some knees in the clinch, and then they separate. Hobbs tries a wild kick, but Farias lands a solid bodykick. Hobbs goes after him again, but difficult to tell if anything actually connects, and Farias just clinches with him as the round closes.
The third round begins with both Hobbs and Farias missing punches, and clinching up against the cage. Hobbs throws some hammerfists to Farias’ thighs. Some strikes are thrown by the two, while being up close within the clinch. After they break up, a wild exchange breaks out, with Farias landing the better blows, but it’s his mouthpiece that comes flying out. After the referee gives it back to him, Farias lands a hard legkick. They clinch up, and Faries trips him from the clinch for a takedown. Farias gets mount, sits up, but Hobbs tries to push off the cage with his feet. Farias retains position, lands a few punches, as the fight time expires. The judges award the fight to Farias, with the interesting unanimous decision score of 30-26, 29-27, and 29-27.
3. At a catchweight of a 150 lbs, Saltillo, Mexico’s Eduardo Bustillos battled Brazil’s Fabiano Rodrigues. The long-haired warrior from Mexico racked up his fourth win in a row. Bustillos opens the round with a few kicks. Rodrigues gets a good kick, and a pair of body shots. Another kick from Bustillos. Rodrigues lands a body shot. After a brief break due to a low blow by Bustillos, Rodrigues lands a good punch on Bustillos, one that makes him step back. After Rodrigues lands a good kick, he tries to follow up with another one, but Bustillos takes him down. Both get back up, and Rodrigues lands a few good punches. After Bustillos lands a good kick, he has Rodrigues against the cage. Looks like Bustillos briefly contemplates going for a guillotine choke, before he lets go of that idea. Then, a huge right hand from Bustillo sends Rodrigues flying down. Bustillo goes after him with hammerfists, and then starts punching away, violently on Rodrigues. The referee sees enough at 2:38 of the first round. Afterwards, the Mexican fighter seemed to want to fight Fabian Saldivar for the STFC Texas Featherweight Championship, in what should be an exciting fight to look forward to in 2015.
2. The second bout of this card took place in the bantamweight division, as Eliazar “El Oso” Rodriguez Chavez, out of Dallas, came over to the Rio Grande Valley to face off against Sam “The Bull” Guardiola, out of Pharr. Early in the round, Chavez landed some good punches on Guardiola. The Pharr native gave fans something to remember, early in the night. “The Bull” tried a legkick, but “El Oso” countered with a hard punch. Guardiola answered back with a good punch of his own. Guardiola slipped briefly, but jumped back up. Guardiola lands a nice overhand right. Chavez hits a solid legkick, and a good punch to the body. Appears that Guardiola landed a good knee to Chavez’s body, but Chavez retaliates with several good punches, and a legkick. Guardiola lands a legkick, and a bodykick. Chavez hits several good punches on Guardiola, but Guardiola connects with a neat left hook. Chavez hits a legkick, but Guardiola comes back with a fantastic left shot that sends Chavez crashing to the canvas. Guardiola, showing great killer instinct, goes right after Chavez’s neck, locking in the rear-naked choke. Chavez attempts to survive, while Guardiola sinks in both hooks, and tightens the hold until “El Oso” finally taps out. Official time was 4:06 of the first round.
1. The first bout during this rainy evening in McAllen featured two middleweights, Elias Urbina, Jr. of Weslaco, and Aaron “Earthquake” Smith of Shreveport, LA. Urbina made quick work of his debuting opponent. A wild exchange broke out, but the long reach of Urbina gave Smith plenty of problems. Urbina repeatedly landed good punches that were right on target. A body kick by Urbina hurt Smith, causing a knockdown. Smith recovered, but Urbina dragged him down to the mat, attempting a rear-naked choke. He couldn’t secure it right, but he took Smith’s back. From that position, he landed big shots on Smith, weakening him enough to lock in the rear-naked choke, forcing Smith to tap out. Official time of the stoppage was 1:07 of the first round.