FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DENVER, COLORADO – For weeks, fans have been looking forward to the return of Mark Kerr. That return was slated to take place against Wes Sims at American Championship Fighting’s Exodus this past Saturday night. Unfortunately for everyone involved, and especially the many fans in attendance, that fight did not take place. Kerr hurt his hand during training earlier in the week, made it to the Denver Coliseum on fight night, but in the end did not make it to the Ocho(sm) for the bout.
Due to the cancellation of the Kerr versus Wes Sims bout, which was obviously to be the main event of the fight card, American Championship Fighting(sm) CEO Rico Vecc announced at the show that anyone that purchased cageside seats (rows 1-4 immediately surrounding the cage) would receive 50% off if they wanted to purchase tickets to the ACF’s July 15th show and everyone else would receive 20% off of a July purchase. Questioned following the show, Mr. Vecc was definitive in saying, “We will absolutely NOT raise ticket prices for the July show.”
In the new main event, which saw it’s fair share of change leading up to the show, ACF(sm) welterweight champion John Cronk defeated a very impressive Ben Call by a controversial split decision in a non-title bout. Cronk was originally slated to face rising talent Joey Clark, but due to an injury just four days before the fight he was unable to compete and the long dormant Call stepped up to the challenge. The last time that Call fought, Wanderlei Silva had yet to set foot in a Pride ring, but you’d never have known it by his performance.
The first round saw Cronk stun Call, but Call worked hard to finish out the round. Then in the second, it was Call that dropped Cronk and then nearly secured first an arm bar and a triangle choke before the round ended. Both fighters had their moments in the closing round with each nearly securing submissions. Following three rounds of what could only be called the fight of the night, it was John Cronk who won, at least according to the crowd’s boos, a controversial split decision.
Popular Colorado fighter Donnie Liles was taken down to the mat early in his bout with Greg Jackson-trained fighter Chris Avila. After fighting off a submission attempt and reversing out of Avila’s back control, Liles worked the fight up to standing. He then took Avila down and quickly secured a Kimura shoulder lock.
Although Cronk did injure his hand in his fight with Call, with he and Liles both victorious, it appears that Cronk will now defend his ACF(sm) welterweight belt against Liles on July 15th, as long as his hand heals up in time.
In light heavyweight action, three time defending national champion University of Nebraska at Omaha assistant wrestling coach Jason Brilz stepped into the Ocho(sm) with professional bull rider turned professional fighter Rob Wince. Brilz was able to secure a takedown early on and that was all he needed. He transitioned to the full mount, causing Wince to turn face down in defense, and finished the fight with a punishing ground and pound assault that caused the Hammer House fighter to tap out.
Chilo Gonzalez and Brett Shafer squared off in a highly anticipated rematch. In their first bout, two years ago, it was Shafer that finished off Gonzalez by strikes. At Exodus, Gonzalez would have none of that. In little more than a minute and a half, he took Shafer down, worked for an arm triangle choke, and then transitioned into an arm bar to get the win by submission.
The first three bouts of the professional portion of the show were all lightweight bouts. In the final of those three, Dennis Davis made it a quick night when he rocked Daniel Betzold, who took the fight on short notice, with a big left hook, took him down and proceeded to hammer him with forearms. Betzold tapped out and Davis stopped. Although the referee did not see the tap, Betzold honorably admitted to it and the fight was stopped just shy of the 30 second mark.
What was expected to be one of the most competitive bouts on the card ended in surprisingly quick fashion. Keith Wilson, a former Olympic alternate in wrestling and coach of the national women’s team, and Rafael Dias, a Brazilian Jiujitsu Black Belt from American Top Team, were expected to put on a spectacular ground display. But like so many other surprises on the night, they engaged immediately with Dias throwing a flurry of punches that dropped Wilson. With his opponent on the mat, Dias continued to hammer Wilson with punches to the head until referee Cecil Peoples stopped the bout. There was some argument from Wilson and his corner that the fight was stopped too soon and that he was going after Dias’ leg to secure a defense, but that did not change the fact that Dias was awarded the TKO stoppage.
The professional bouts kicked off with a battle between two Colorado favorites in the lightweight division, Cruz Chacon and Noah Thomas. The fight went to the ground early when Chacon pulled guard and then secured an oma plata shoulder lock that Thomas deftly defended even though it appeared to be fairly secure. Thomas then attempted to mount a ground and pound attack from Chacon’s guard, but the lanky fighter worked his way to a tight triangle choke that Thomas could not counter. This was a big win for Chacon, who was on a losing skid as of late.
There were also two exciting amateur bouts that started the evening’s fight card. Although Chris Cisneros showed a lot of heart in his battle with Cameron Dollar, the Nate Marquardt-trained fighter couldn’t seem to find an answer for Dollar’s striking, whether it was on the feet or the ground. After three rounds of action, the judges scored unanimously in Dollar’s favor.
The very first bout of the evening was a heavyweight contest between Noah Thomas’ training partner Reed O’Malley and Rocky Hoffschneider, who happens to train with the same team as Cruz Chacon. After a back and forth battle on the ground, O’Malley secured a triangle choke early in the second round to claim the win.
American Championship Fighting(sm)
May 6, 2006
John Cronk def. Ben Call by Split Decision, 3 Rounds
Donnie Liles def. Chris Avila by Kimura, 3:04 of Round 1
Jason Brilz def. Rob Wince by Submission to Strikes, 2:37 of Round 1
Chilo Gonzalez def. Brett Shafer by Arm Bar, 1:34 of Round 1
Dennis Davis def. Daniel Betzold by Submission to Strikes, 0:28 of Round 1
Rafael Dias def. Keith Wilson by TKO, 0:15 of Round 1
Cruz Chacon def. Noah Thomas by Triangle Choke, 2:41 of Round 1
Undercard (Amateur Bouts)
Cameron Dollar def. Chris Cisneros by Unanimous Decision, 3 Rounds
Reed O’Malley def. Rocky Hoffschneider by Triangle Choke, 1:41 of Round 2
©American Championship Fighting, LLC 2006 – All rights reserved.
About American Championship Fighting, LLC
American Championship Fighting, LLC (ACF) is a premier mixed martial arts promotion. Under the ownership of Rico Vecc Promotions(sm), the ACF(sm) provides a combination of the preeminent mixed martial arts fighters in the world in a highly entertaining atmosphere. For more information, go to www.theACF.net or www.sorealithurts.com.
Rico Vecc Promotions(sm), owner of the ACF(sm), is operated by successful entrepreneur and the CEO of the ACF(sm) Rico Vecc. A self-made millionaire, Vecc built his fortune in real estate investing and has committed to helping others through his National Wealth Institute (www.NationalWealthInstitute.com) and his book “How to Become a Millionaire in Your Jeans and a T-Shirt Through Real Estate.”