by Eddie Cortez for MMAWeekly.com
EVERETT, WASH. – Just 25 miles outside of Seattle, Washington, an announced crowd of nearly 7,000 loaded up the Everett Event Center to set a record attendance for not only Washington mixed martial arts, but any combat sport in the state. The International Fight League crowd was energized and by the end of the night as they were anything but disappointed in the athletic competition.
With 5 of the 10 bouts ending by knockout and two others by debated split decisions, the crowd was always on there feet. The first match pitted the Tokyo Sabres and the Portland Wolfpack. The Wolfpack struck early with the knockout of the night by Matt Horwich who kicked the Sabres’ sole Japanese fighter Kazuhiro Hamanaka in the head sending him crashing to the mat. The Janitor, Vladimir Matyushanko, regained Saber control with his ground and pound knockout of Aaron Stark and the Sabers never looked back, winning 3-2 and clinching the first spot in the IFL postseason.
Next up were the Tiger Sharks and the Anacondas. The Seattle based team entered the ring to the chants of “Tiger Sharks” and the constant cheers for their hometown athletes. The bout of the night was without a doubt the lightweight match-up between Seattle’s Shad Lierley and Los Angeles’ Chris Horodecki. With the two standing toe-to-toe for nearly three rounds, with brief breaks of Lierley taking his opponent down, even IFL president Kurt Otto stood and cheered in admiration of two of his league’s hottest upcoming stars. In the end the judges gave the decision that could have gone either way to Horodecki. The Tiger Sharks countered back with Brad Blackburn upsetting Jay Hieron by quick knockout, but the Anacondas proved too much and pulled off a 3-2 win.
Without a doubt Seattle was a great host for this well put together event and they are itching to see their home team fight again in their backyard as soon as possible.
SABERS DEF. WOLFPACK, 3-2
Orville Palmer (Sabres) def. Devin Cole (Wolfpack) by Split Decision
Matt Horwich (Wolfpack) def. Kazuhiro Hamanaka (Sabres) by KO at 2:07, R1
Vladimir Matyushanko (Sabres) def. Aaron Stark (Wolfpack) by TKO at 2:49, R1
Antonio McKee (Sabres) def. Mike Dolce (Wolfpack) by Unanimous Decision
Ryan Schultz (Wolfpack) def. Savant Young (Sabres) by Unanimous Decision
ANACONDA DEF. TIGER SHARKS, 3-2
Benji Radach (Anacondas) def. Bristol Marunde (Tiger Sharks) by KO at 1:28, R1
Chris Horodecki (Anacondas) def. Shad Lierley (Tiger Sharks) by Unanimous Decision
Brad Blackburn (Tiger Sharks) def. Jay Hieron (Anacondas) by KO at 0:40, R1
Alex Schoenauer (Anacondas) def. Allan Goes (Tiger Sharks) by KO at 3:00, R1
Reese Andy (Tiger Sharks) def. Krysztof Soszynski (Anacondas) by Split Decision