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Oct 17th
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Home MMA Bowles KO’s Torres, becomes new WEC Bantamweight champion
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Bowles KO’s Torres, becomes new WEC Bantamweight champion

torres_vs_bowlesUndefeated Brian Bowles put an end to the 17th fight win streak of Miguel Angel Torres with a stunning KO victory over the former champion. With both fighters being extremely cautious at the start of the round, Torres was immediately rocked by a Bowles over hand hook that was an ominous sign of things to come. Torres immediately countered with two power hooks as both fighters backed off and continued to circle each other. Briefly tieing up in a clinch, Torres was taken down by Bowles with the two fighters briefly working on the ground. Being cautions of standing up Torres threw a few up kicks before getting back on his feet. What happened next would shock everyone at the Joint Hard rock Arena. Bowles landed a crisp counter right hook after Torres made his way in with a flurry of ones and twos. Torres immediately hit the ground and Bowls did not let up, landing flush shots from standing position on the downed champion. The referee rushed in to stop the fight at 3:57 of the first round.  Bowles continued his undefeated ways being the first man to beat Miguel Angel Torres since November of 2003.


In the co-main event Dominick Cruz dominated Joseph Benavidez en route to a unanimous decision. The fight was fought at a high pace, but Cruz’s height and reach advantage would prove too much for the Sacramento based fighter. Able to move in and out Benavidez had a difficult time trying to land shots on his taller opponent. When pressed to strike Benavidez was often countered and flustered and could never get Cruz in one spot to work his plan on the inside.  With Cruz scoring takedowns Benavidez spent much of the fight hopelessly hoping to land that one big shot attempting a few spinning back fists in the process. All three rounds were dominated by Cruz, who delivered the harder and more effective strikes and stamp an exclamation point on his victory by taking Benavidez down, applying hooks and landing strike from behind to go to the judges score cards.  All three judges scored the bout 29-28, 29-28 and 30-27 for Cruz.    


Castillo surprises Lamas


Danny Castillo notched the 0 off of Ricardo Lamas record as he was able to pull of a TKO win in impressive fashion.  The first round was reminiscent of a kickboxing match with Castillo landing the harder kicks to the legs and body.  It was apparent though that Lamas had the striking advantage landing good jabs on Castillo and blocking a good amount of the combinations that were thrown at him.  Late in the first Lamas landed the first significant strike in form of a head kick that Castillo was not expecting. The two fighters continued to be active and busy with Lamas landing another leg kick before the end of the round.  It seemed Lamas was on his was to a three round decision as he continued landing his jabs.  At 4:15 of the second round the tide would change as Castillo landed a huge overhand right that turned Lamas backwards. Hurt and on the mat, Lamas was eating shots and could no longer defend himself as the fight was stopped.  Lamas earned his 4th consecutive win in the WEC cage improving to a record of 8-1.         


Mizugaki and Garcia keep winning ways


Takeya Mizugaki continued to impress fight fans as he won a hard fought spilt decision against an equally impressive Jeff Curran. Showing his great take down abilities Mizugaki was able to take Curran down all through the fight. Curran shined in this area showing impressive defense on his back, never taking any serious damage and neutralizing Mizugaki’s ground and pound attempts. Perhaps the highlight of the fight came at the final minute of the third round. Curran, in his guard was able to sweep the Japanese fighter and locked in a much sought after triangle deep. Mizugaki struggled to slip out and was forced to roll over adding extra torque to the hold and allowing Curran to be on top position. With the Triangle still locked in, Curran landed some big blows to his opponents head and eventually rolled back as Mizugaki somehow survived being saved by the bell! In all, Mizugaki was locked in the triangle for about 30 seconds, displaying big time heart and not tapping. The fans showed their appreciation as well, cheering for the Japanese fighter as he was declared the winner.          


Leonard Garcia put on an entertaining three round contest against fellow lightweight Jameel Massouh. Living up to his reputation of having heavy hands Garcia landed a huge right that knocked Massouh onto the canvas in the first part of the first. Garcia went in but could not finish as Massough neutralized him in the guard.  Massouh was able to clinch up and take Garcia down, in an effort to buy more time to recover from the big shot he took earlier. The second round turned some heads as it was a complete 180 of from the first. Massouh went on the offensive landing a flush body kick and was able to gain side control over Garcia. Landing crisp short elbows, Massough was able to get a darce choke applied. Garcia barely escaped the choke attempt but was visibly affected for the rest of the round as he breathed heavily. Garcia though, showed great composure as he was able to recover at the start of the third. Pushing the pace, Garcia was the aggressor for the rest of the round, throwing punches in bunches and heavy bombs. Massough looked very passive for the rest of the round, perhaps fatigued but landed a few good jabs to finish off the fight standing. Garcia’s aggressive offense was enough to convince the judges that he was actively looking to win the fight and they award him the spilt decision.  


In other bouts:
L.C. Davis defs Javier Vasquez via split decision
Diego Nunes defs Rafael Dias via unanimous decision
Rani Yahya defs John Hosman via submission in 1st round (2:08)
Ed Ratcliff defs Phil Cardella via unanimous decision
Shane Roller defs Marcus Hicks via unanimous decision
Cole Province defs Fredson Paixao via unanimous decision

 Marcos Villegas

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In an upset reminiscent of the one Mike Brown pulled off over Urijah Faber last fall, Brian Bowles did the unthinkable and ended Miguel Torres’ 17 fight win streak, receiving the bantamweight title in the process. Bowles overcame the odds and knocked out the champ at 3:57 of the first round. Bowles’ first defence will likely come against Dominick Cruz who defeated top bantamweight contender Joseph Benavidez earlier in the evening. Danny Castillo, Takeya Mizugaki and Leonard Garcia also registered victories on a card that was chalked full of excitement.
In the main event of the evening Bowles opened strong with a stiff right hand that rocked Torres. The fight went to the ground where Bowles was able to execute some effective ground and pound butTorres stayed active, landing some good heel shots to Bowles’ side. The fight eventually went back up to the feet where both fighters were able to land a few shots. Midway through the first Torres exploded, landing several strikes causing Bowles to backpedal, but the challenger found an opening and landed a vicious right hook that sent Torres to the canvas. A few devastating ground shots left Torres visibly unconscious and the referee had no choice but to stop the fight. “I was just confident I could beat him,” said Bowles after the fight. “A lot of other people, I think, get caught up in the hype with him and are afraid of him. I just wasn’t worried about it.” The knockout was Torres’ first in 39 fights and his first loss in 6 years.
In the co-main event top bantam weight contenders Joseph Benavidez and Dominick Cruz squared off to see who would get the next crack at the bantamweight title. Cruz’s reach advantage seemed to cause a few problems for Benavidez; however he still managed to land a few impressive shots. Cruz was just simply more effective though, landing better strikes and in a surprising twist took Benavidez down on several occasions. If there was any doubt in the judges mind who had won the fight, Cruz took his opponent down yet again near the end of the fight and secured Benavidez’s back, landing numerous strikes from behind. Cruz went on to win by unanimous decision, likely securing himself the #1 contender spot in the division.
A lightweight battle between Danny Castillo and Ricardo Lamas pitted two decorated collegiate wrestlers against each other. Despite their well documented ground game the fight remained standing. Lamas got the better of Castillo making effective use of his kicks and appeared to be winning the fight but Castillo recovered and landed a straight right in the second round that left Lamas stumbling. Castillo finished the fight with strikes on the ground to earn the TKO victory. The win is the third in a row for Castillo while the loss is Lamas’ first in his professional career.
Takeya Mizugaki took on the much more experienced Jeff Curran in a bantamweight matchup. Although Mizugaki spent much of the fight on top, making good use of his size advantage, Curran was active from the guard almost catching the native of Japan in several submissions. He nearly finished the fight near the end of the third with a triangle choke but Mizugaki somehow managed to hold on to register the win.
An early shot by Leonard Garcia nearly won him his fight against Jameel Massouh early in the first, but the fighter recovered and made a valiant come back in the second. Massouh secured a choke that appeared to nearly end the fight, but Garcia would get free and advance to the third round. Massouh simply didn’t do enough to tip the fight in his favour in the third and Garcia would go on to win by spilt decision.
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