Saturday, August 25, 2012

PCC: Valley Fight Series VI; making a statement


There was a time when Mixed Martial Arts was only considered a west coast thing; well that time is long gone as the east coast, especially Pennsylvania, has become a hot bed for MMA. Such was the case on Friday night as PA Cage Combat presented their Valley Fight Series VI card at the new Sands Event Center in Bethlehem, PA. 12 fights, both amateur and professional, encompassed all the action and helped PCC make a statement.

The main event of the evening featured featherweights (145 lbs.) Scott 'The Animal' Heckman (12-3, 1 KO 9 subs), out of Bangor, PA, facing off against Billy Vaughan (11-13, 3 KO's 8 subs) from Columbus, Ohio. Though it was the main event, it didn't last very long as the local product Heckman caught Vaughn in a standing guillotine choke and literally dragged him across the cage forcing the tap in the first round. The guillotine choke submission turned out to be the flavor of the evening as you'll soon see.

In one of the other featured pro bouts of the evening lightweight (155 lbs.) Greg Wolfe (1-1, 1 sub) evened his professional record as he tapped out local product Zach Sigley (1-1) with a guillotine choke at (1:47) of the first round. Sigley, coming off a debut win at the last PCC card in June, attempted to use his forte, which is wrestling, but got caught and had no choice but to tap.

The only title fight of the night was in the middleweight (185 lbs.) division as PCC champ Adam 'The Archangel' Atiyeh (5-0 amateur) defended his belt with a lackluster unanimous decision over challenger Dustin Wentz (6-3 amateur). Atiyeh used multiple take downs throughout the fight, along with some dirty boxing, to ground out the decision.

Another featured catchweight (215 lbs.) fight on the card saw Jason Heflin up his record to (6-1 amateur) as he made quick work of Cameron McClaney (0-2 amateur). Heflin thwarted a take down attempt by McClaney and then caught him in a tight guillotine choke, which forced the tap by McClaney at (1:48) of the first round.

In a heavyweight bout, Matt Breiner (4-1 amateur), after losing the first round convincingly, came back strong in the second and made quick work of Rodney Sigley (1-1 amateur) winning by TKO in just 19 seconds. After a vicious exchange between both fighters, a devastating left-right combination from Breiner dropped Sigley to his knees. With Sigley all but out, Breiner just threw his hands up and walked away prompting the referee to step in and stop the fight.

On the undercard, Bethlehem's own Rick 'El Numero Uno' Nuno (4-1 amateur), fighting out of the renowned AMA Fight Club in New Jersey, put on an impressive performance in front of the home crowd as he grinded out a three round unanimous decision over Team Hammer's Dominic Territo (1-2 amateur). Nuno (pictured above @ right), who loves to throw hands, had to work his wrestling and take down defense against Territo who was aggressively pursuing the take down.

UFC Welterweight Charlie Brenneman, who also fights out of AMA, was in Nuno's corner. I asked Brenneman what he thought of Nuno's progress and he said, "He's only been working with us for a little while, but you can already see progress. His hands are great; what we're working on is polishing up his ground game. If we can get his ground game to be as good as his hands, he's going to be really good." Nuno told me after the fight, "This was probably my last amateur fight; most likely my next fight will be my pro debut."

After witnessing a couple of Tuff-N-Uff events, arguably one of the top amateur MMA promotions in the country, in Las Vegas at The Orleans Hotel and at The Cox Pavillion @ UNLV, I have to say that the PCC event Friday night was on par; professionally and entertainment wise. PA Cage Combat made a statement Friday night. "MMA is growing here on the east coast and so are we."

Also in attendance Friday night was UFC middleweight contender Tim Boetsch along with former UFC veteran Carmelo Marrero

Be looking out for the next PCC show, which will probably be in December according to owner and matchmaker Nate Shook

Photo credit goes to Martin Klobosits, Jr. of Martinkimages Photography (www.martinkimages.com)

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