Written by: Mike Calimbas
Photos by: Barry Laminack
The IXFA made its return to Houston on Saturday October 16, 2010, and what a return it was. The opening fight between Justin Ledet and Josh Foster not only won TheCageDoor.net fight of the night, but it would prove to be a precursor as to what was to come the rest of the night. Other award winners included Jeremy Morris, who earned Submission of the Night honors.
Fight fans enjoyed action bell to bell all night long as each of the fighters on the card gave everything he had, leaving it all in the cage. The pace of the fights was quick and the fans seemed to be into the action from the get go. Scott Dawson and Chris Reed will look to keep the momentum going as they have already begun planning their next card in December.
Below is a recap of each of the fights along with some fight photos.
Josh Foster vs Justin Ledet
Justin Ledet won in a very impressive well-rounded performance over an aggressive and game Josh Foster. Both these men fought their hearts out to open the action but Ledet methodically took control of the fight in all stages of the game. By the time it got to round three, I think Ledet just had more in the tank and used that gas to submit Foster via inverted-triangle.
Kevin Fanning vs Prince Ho
Kevin Fanning and Prince Ho put on a battle! Fanning looked to be in control for the better part of the fight but Prince Ho fought gamely, garnering several reversals during the bout but to no avail as he was never able to put Fanning in serious trouble. On the other hand, Fanning put Ho in danger via relentless striking as well as the arm-bar to close round 2. Fanning won via unanimous decision in a great fight.
Rashon Lewis vs Bryan Garcia
Rashon Lewis and Bryan Garcia put on a SHOW for the crowd in attendance. These two fighters hit the opening stanza by hitting each other with wild hooks and everything they could muster with sheer aggression. I am not one for too much hyperbole but Rashon may just be one of the most explosive fighters I’ve seen in Houston since Melvin Guillard. A very impressive TKO victory for Lewis.
Kirk Gibson vs Josh Lee
This was almost our shortest fight of the night. I didn’t see which punch caused it but Kirk Gibson’s nose was busted wide open en route to the referee stoppage at :58 of round one.
Rick Bigger vs Jeremy Morris
This was our second submission of the night candidate as Jeremy Morris debuts with an impressive submission victory over Rick Bigger. This fight did not last very long as Morris took Bigger down quickly after a brief exchange en route to the triangle victory.
Marc Ramirez vs Justin Lenard
The shortest fight of the night ended at a mere 12 seconds of round one as Marc Ramirez used a bevy of punches to end the fight ala Vitor Belfort over Silva or BJ Penn over Caol Uno. He simply overwhelmed Lenard with surprising aggression. Afterwards in his post-fight interview, Ramirez was asked by Adam Villareal where the afterparty was taking place… “at my house,” he said. I wonder how many attended.
Jason Sullivan vs Jordan Clissold
This fight was a true toughman contest as both these guys swung with reckless abandon as they ended up all over the cage. Jason Sullivan definitely won the first two rounds, moving forward and taking down Clissold, all the while controlling the action on the ground. In the third, Clissold turned it around big-time, taking Sullivan’s back and putting him in danger for a good portion of the round. It was definitely Jordan’s round but Sullivan fought gamely, protecting his neck the smart way by controlling one of his opponent’s arms. That technical correctness won him this bout 29-28.
Larry Crowe vs Jared Taylor
Larry Crowe cut and cornered Jared Taylor in both rounds one and two, attacking with hooks, uppercuts, and knees on a retreating Jared Taylor, who didn’t land anything too cleanly before he landed the cleanest shot of the bout, a huge knee straight down the pipe, so to speak, to the Crowe family jewels. Taking five minutes to recover, Crowe continued on and slowed in round 3, choosing to attack with takedowns. It was later revealed in his pro-fight interview that he broke his right hand and perhaps that’s why he chose to go the ground round in route 3. At any rate, very impressive performance in victory for Larry Crowe.
Antonio Flores vs Brandon McDowell
Antonio Flores quickly captured the 170 IXFA title in a scintillating victory. McDowell rushed Flores quickly to try to get the fight to the ground but Flores circled out and began a vicious assault of punches that floored McDowell. Antonio continued with a vicious assault of punches that cut McDowell open. It was a violent assault of GNP that forced the ref to stop the bout for the TKO victory. Excellent and explosive showing by Antonio Flores, who decimates Austin’s Brandon McDowell in his Houston debut.
I caught up with Antonio after the fight to get his thoughts on the victory.
How does it feel to win that belt?
It feels great to win the belt. I trained really hard for it and it was great to actually see how many supporters I really have. It made it feel that much more meaningful.
I saw you were very happy and thankful to all your supporters in the cage during your post-fight interview. Anybody you’d like to thank?
I really was, it felt great. I would like to thank my guys from Evolution Boxing; Jose, Peanut and Rudy for helping me get ready for this fight. My boys at 4oz, my boys at Gracie Barra The Woodlands and my corner men Alex Morono and Juan Martinez. I would also like to give a shout out to my boy in Thailand Micheal Chase Corley.
What are you going to do now that this fight is behind you? Hop back into the gym or what? What does the future hold for Antonio Flores?
Just relax for a week then back in the gym. As for the future, we will see but it will be defending the belt at some point and I will be ready for whoever it is.
Anything else you’d like to say to the fans of Houston MMA?
Again thank you all for all the support. It feels great and I’m glad to see the fans supporting us. We work really hard for these fights and in win or defeat your support makes it that much better or the much easier to come back stronger so thank you!