Torres’ Win Streak At 11, Hornbuckle, Maciejewski Light Up Total Fight Challenge 10
Torres’ Win Streak at 11, Hornbuckle, Maciejewski Light up Total Fight Challenge 10
By Dustin Lee DePue – Photos by Riley Kerestes
Hammond, IN — Frigid Midwestern temperatures were no match for MMA on Saturday night as fighters brought the heat to the Hammond Civic Center where the Total Fight Challenge held its tenth event. Roughly 1400 fans were in attendance for the seventeen-fight card which featured fifteen MMA and two Muay Thai fights.
The main event featured 135 pound Midwest sensation Miguel Angel Torres taking on crafty striker Charles Wilson. With a record of 29-1 and victories over Clay French, Ryan Ackerman and Joe Pearson, Torres was the clear favorite heading into the fight.
Lanky and swift, Wilson needed to keep the fight standing where he could utilize his unorthodox striking (Wilson has a kung-fu background) and long reach to frustrate Torres and avoid his dangerous submission game.
As the opening bell sounded, Wilson swept across the ring, bouncing in and out of range as he looked for an opening. He didn’t waste any time, throwing an axe kick as a setup for a lighting fast right straight that seemed to travel halfway across the ring before tagging Torres and knocking him to the mat. Not wanting any of Torres’ ground game, Wilson let him stand up. Blood began to trickle from a cut under Torres’ left eye. Unfazed, Torres pressed forward, a stolid look that Wilson would later say impressed him. If Torres proved anything in this fight, it’s that he’s a machine.
Wilson did a great job stuffing Torres’ takedowns for much of the first round; however, Torres kept pressing and finally nailed it, quickly transitioning into a triangle choke. Wilson was able to defend despite the apparent tightness of the hold but the struggle took its toll on his stamina. Coming into round two Wilson had clearly lost his fifth gear. Without his speed, Wilson found himself back on the mat fighting off a relentless submission attack. Amazingly, Wilson was once again able to survive the onslaught of triangles and armbars, any one of which looked tight enough to end the fight, as the bell sounded to end round two. This was to be his final triumph. As much improved as he looked, Wilson could only dodge so many bullets, as he was finally caught in a triangle at 1:29 of the third round.
Torres proves again why he is a force at 135. If he were heavier, he’d have surely had his shot at the UFC by now. At twenty-five years old, there is still the chance that his frame will grow enough to support 155 pounds. Until then, we’ll enjoy his decimation of the rank and file featherweights here in the Midwest.
A spark set off by Boban Simic’s disrespectful cornermen nearly set afire a riot on the main floor after Samic’s unanimous decision loss to fellow heavyweight Adam Maciejewski. Known for heavy hands and little else, Simic lives to dish out punishment with two fists born only for haymakers. It’s a hell of a great show when someone tries to stand with him, and Maciejewski showed he was unafraid. He also showed that he was smart. After two flurries in which both fighters landed big punches and the screaming of the crowd reached a murderous pitch, Maciejewski used his superior wrestling ability to shoot in under Simic’s telegraphed haymakers and score several big takedowns. On the mat, Maciejewski’s ground and pound was flat and unimpressive but scored points nonetheless.
In the second round, Simic’s frustration with his opponent began to show. Samic seemed to expect Maciejewski to stand and trade bombs with him. Samic would do better to work on his wrestling than expect his opponents not to use theirs. It was the final minute of the fight that inspired in Simic’s corner such intense rage. On top of Samic, Maciejewski was trying to stay busy. He wasn’t landing any significant shots and with a minute left Samic began to ask the referee for a standup. With thirty seconds left, he was angry, as was the crowd. The referee looked like he was going to stand them up but the punches Maciejewski was throwing (few of which were landing cleanly) kept him from pulling the trigger. In the end, the bell sounded and the fight was over. Maciejewski was declared the winner by unanimous decision.
Simic’s cornermen then began yelling obscenities and threats at Maciejewski’s trainer, UFC veteran Keith Hackney. Hackney just rolled his eyes. Simic’s corner continued to thrash about until security stepped in and a struggle began to engulf that side of the floor. Luckily, a potential riot resulted in little more than a ruckus as the offending members of Simic’s entourage were dragged off by police. There was an impromptu intermission to cool things down and the rest of the evening went by without incident.
Triston Yunker surprised many with his handling of the tough and skilled Jason Chambers. Chambers shot in for a takedown early in the fight. Yunker rolled out of danger and ended up with a scarf hold on Chambers, from which he locked Chamber’s arm, forcing Chambers to tap at 1:29 of the first round. After the fight, Chambers could be seen favoring his elbow, saying to his corner that it had popped out. An impressive if somewhat surprising win for Triston Yunker.
Local favorite Dan Hornbuckle added to his list of quick finishes a thirty-five second victory over Alex Carter. Carter filled in for Jasper Hudson on one days notice. Carter opened up the fight with a takedown attempt. After a quick scramble, Hornbuckle latched on the fight-ending triangle choke.
Eddie Wineland chased Dan Swift for much of their two round fight, peppering him with jabs, leg kicks and a few stiff crosses for good measure. Swift clearly wanted the fight on the ground, a desire that went mostly unfulfilled as Wineland stuffed almost all of Swifts takedown attempts. Swift ran out of moves and was reduced to falling to his butt and on one occasion yelling, "C’mon" as his opponent waited for him to stand. Wineland’s aggressiveness and the damage dealt to Swifts left knee from kicks were enough for an easy unanimous decision victory.
Jesse Chilton outmaneuvered Emerson Rushing, escaping from the guard to Rushing’s back where Chilton was able to finish with the rear-naked choke.
In amateur action, Darius Turcinskas destroyed Keith McNeely with a flurry of powerful punches that had McNeely reeling within seconds. The ref should have stepped in sooner as McNeely was staggering around in a daze before being knocked out in just twenty-six seconds.
Eric Rasmussen exhibited a commanding ring presence in his technical domination of Justin Donovan, hurting him early with punch combinations before knocking him out with a knee to the head.
Jim Peterson wore down the much younger Tom Eppens with solid clinch work while avoiding Eppens takedown attempts. Peterson continually slipped the right hook over Eppens jab, tagging him again and again before finishing him with punches on the ground.
Professional MMA Bouts
3×5 minute rounds
2×5 minute rounds
Amateur MMA Bouts
2×3 minute rounds
Professional Muay Thai Bout
Chidi Nyokuni def. Cirus Washington by TKO 2:21 R3
Amateur Muay Thai Bout
Jose Maldanado def. Clinton Brown by unanimous decision