Christina Sears Reporting
The crowd filled the Winnipeg Convention Centre ready to watch a night packed with high caliber fights, and that’s exactly what they got.
The 185-pound weight division would kick off the night, coming down the ramp was Sam Pascuzzi his opponent Isaias Alvarado following soon behind him. But it was only seconds before Alvarado who fights out of Team Quest finished this bout in 15 seconds of the first round winning by knock out.
The U.C.W originally had scheduled ten fights for the night, but due to fighters fighting on unsanctioned events they were suspended and denied their fighting license for six months. The commission says that this is going to be a warning across Canada to those fighters who make the decision to fight on those types of cards.
Simon Marini was one of the fighters who had a last minute opponent change due to his original opponent Lindsey Hawks had to pull out due to his six month suspension.
“My opponent changed a couple times. First from a muay thai guy to a slugger, then possibly to an all-round guy, then to someone I had knew nothing about,” says Marini
But an opponent change was the last thing on Marini’s mind, it didn’t matter who he fought just as long as he had a fight.
“It sucks training so hard and sticking to a hard diet only to end up not fighting,” he says.
Matthew Veley stepped in, to take on Marini in the 155-pound division.
As soon as the bell rang it was go time, neither of the fighters interested in touching gloves. Both fighters exchanging some punches Marini landing some hard right hands.
On two occasions Veley and Marini were clinched up against the cage, forcing the referee to break it up. At one point Veley looked to almost have a guillotine choke locked but Marini slipped out managing to get into a good position to slap on a triangle choke winning the bout in three minutes of the first round.
Curtis DeMarce a fighter who isn’t new to the MMA game started his MMA career at the young age of 17. Mike Seeger gave DeMarce a warm welcome to the cage winning by TKO in two minutes of the first round in his first professional fight.
“I made poor decisions in the past because I used to have a manager that just set up fights for me to lose,” says DeMarce.
DeMarce was set to fight Matt Dayboll who fights out of Dayboll BJJ in Port Colborne Ontario.
“I knew he was young it was his first fight and I knew his ground was his only game and my ground matches his so did not need to worry,” says DeMarce.
Dayboll started off strong in the first round managing to take down DeMarce not once but twice within in the first few minutes of the round. While on the ground Dayboll did a good job feeding DeMarce a punishment with his knees.
But it wasn’t long before DeMarce broke the arm bar submission attempt by Dayboll throwing down some hard punches that bloodied up the face of Matt Dayboll taking them into the second round.
The second round went to DeMarce he managed to get a good strong position pinning Dayboll against the cage and unleashing a number of hard punches ending the fight in the second round in 43 seconds by TKO, welcoming Matt Dayboll to the world of MMA.
Ryan Bawn and Cory Grant both making their professional MMA debut fighting in the 150-pound weight division.
Bawn and Grant came out firing some good exchanges but with Grants wrestling background it was only minutes before he took Bawn to the mat.
“Well I knew after the first takedown I was going have problems keeping the fight standing so I was hoping to work submissions,” says Bawn
While on the ground Grant sets up for an arm bar trying to soften his opponent up by throwing some punches and hammer fists down on Bawn’s face.
Bawn manages to get back to his feet but Grant went for yet another takedown, the impact of Bawn hitting the mat rumbled throughout the convention centre. On the ground Grant begins to pound Bawn towards the end of the second round.
As the bell rang for both fighters to go into their corners to get cleaned up before what looked to be another round all of a sudden the match was over with Cory Grant winning by TKO in the second round. Little did everyone know, Ryan Bawn threw in the towel at the end of the second round.
“I called the fight because of a problem with my sight. I had some sort of allergy to the sauna and by the third round I couldn’t see the other side of the ring. I don’t normally fight at 150 so I think the amount of time in the sauna must have dried out my eyes or something,” says Bawn
“Its not worth for me to continue a fight without being able to defend myself properly. Saying this I want to take nothing away from Cory because he would have taken the judges victory if the fight wasn’t stopped before the end of the third,” he added.
Another fight that had the audience glued to the cage was in the 170-pound division. Dino Camire fighting out of Bison Wrestling and Justin Knox from DayBoll BJJ got a standing ovation after their bout.
From start to finish they were all over each other both landing some hard punches. Once on the ground Camire tries to avoid Knox’s heavy hands by rolling to his back but Knox capitalizes by getting his hooks in and starts applying a rear naked choke.
With things not looking good for Camire, he manages to roll into an arm bar winning the bout in the first round.
The energy from this fight and the performance in the cage with these two fighters could easily made them possible candidates for fight of the night.
Rory McDonell was another fighter who also had some last minute opponent changes. McDonell was suppose to fight in the 155-pound division but due to his opponent showing up late it was decided he would fight at 170 pounds.
McDonell who fights out of Joslin's MMA, was set to fight Ferrid Kheder who holds a record of 4-2-0 in his MMA career. This was the co-main event of the evening and was the only fight on this card to go the full three rounds.
McDonell came up short in the end losing to an unanimous a decision.
In the main event of the evening Marcus Hicks from Team Denarius was set to fight Winnipeg’s own Krzysztof Soszynski who fights out of Team Quest in California in the 205 pound weight division.
Soszyski, who has fought in the I.F.L, took Hicks to the ground maintaining side control while working for a kimaura winning the bout by submission in the first round.
The next Ultimate Cage Wars event will be held in Winnipeg at the Winnipeg Convention Centre on June 27, 2008.
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