PLAINS TWP. ‚?? It‚??s not often that a first-time fighter starts his career on the feature bill. Jim Jordan entered his first mixed martial arts fight as Cage Fight 13‚??s biggest amateur stage.
It took the Kingston resident less than two minutes to become the house favorite Friday in front of a crowd of 1,400 at the Northeast Mixed Martial Arts event at The Woodlands.
Jordan nailed an overhand right punch and took Kadiem Wheatle into a submission hold late in the first round. Wheatle tapped out at the 1:41 mark to give Jordan a welterweight victory.
‚??Someone once told me that you‚??re either 15 percent better or 15 percent worse under pressure,‚?Ě Jordan said. ‚??That‚??s me right there. I sold a boatload of tickets and had a lot more people cheering for me than I expected. I came through behind all of the crowd noise and butterflies.‚?Ě
Milford‚??s Mike Bannon added to his undefeated career record with a tap-out win in Cage Fight 13‚??s main event. Bannon, now standing at an 8-0 record, spent the first few minutes of the first round on the floor. He countered Binky Jones, of Baltimore, with a triangle submission, and Jones succumbed at the 2:19 mark of the match.
‚??That was mostly jujitsu instincts right there,‚?Ě said Bannon, who advances to the Bellator Fighting Championships circuit with the victory. ‚??I didn‚??t plan it or anything; the opportunity just happened to come about and I took advantage of it.‚?Ě
In Cage Fight 13‚??s most hotly contested professional match, Bethlehem‚??s Jake Gombocz earned a technical knockout win over Pittston native Gary Peters seconds before the end of the second round. Gombocz cornered Peters and delivered several hard jabs to the head before finishing with a submission hold.
Suliman Ismail, brother of footballers Raghib and Qadry, was overpowered by West Hazleton‚??s Jeremiah Wells in a 42-second knockout. Wells struck gold with a side kick, a fake side kick and a right jab that floored Ismail.
‚??I knew I had the power over him,‚?Ě Wells said. ‚??I don‚??t like knockouts, actually. I hate short matches. I‚??m more of a submission fighter. But I suppose things just worked out for me today.‚?Ě
Kingston native Willy Weber elicited the loudest crowd volume in the 170-pound amateur fight. Weber knocked down Milford‚??s Dan Della Vecchia with four consecutive punches in the first round.
Della Vecchia responded in the second round with a pair of shots to Weber‚??s right side. By the third round, the hometown crowd chanted his name en route to a unanimous victory of 29-28 scores.
‚??I got my head on straight (in the second and third rounds). He‚??s a wrestler and I‚??m a wrestler. He put me in a full-on trap mode, and I caught myself wrestling. At the first break, my coach set me straight and I came out with a lot of connected hits.‚?Ě
Larry Gonzalez, of Wilkes-Barre‚??s School of Combat Arts, produced the event‚??s fastest fight with a 34-second technical knockout of John Smith. Gonzalez manhandled his opponent and told the sold-out crowd that he is tired of lesser competition.
‚??I just want some better opponents,‚?Ě he said, to a chorus of boos.
Cage Fight 14 is slated for Oct. 13 in Hazle Township.
160 ‚?? Ryan Holmes dec. Bill Bidwell, 3-0; 145 ‚?? Justin Mazella dec. Tyler Feist, 3-0; 185 ‚?? Mike Liberto dec. Derek Smith, 3-0; 170 ‚?? Dan Della Vecchia dec. Willy Weber, 3-0; 135 ‚?? Eddie Alvarez dec. Vinny Donvito, 3-0; 225 ‚?? Larry Gonzalez TKO John Smith, :34; 150 ‚?? Brandon Dolan submission Doug Grabiec, 1:18; Middleweights ‚?? Jeremiah Wells knock out Suliman Ismail, :42; 205 ‚?? Kris Gratalo dec. Mark Krumrine, 3-0; Welterweight ‚?? Jim Jordan tap out Kadiem Wheatle, 1:41
Welterweight ‚?? Jake Gombocz TKO Gary Peters, 9:56; Lightweight ‚?? Mike Bannon tap out Binky Jones, 2:19