by Al Yu – MMAWeekly.com
Middleweight prospect Ryan Sturdy returns to Extreme Challenge Saturday evening in Osceola, Iowa. The Team Curran fighter is scheduled to take on Mike Van Meer for the 185-pound title. Sturdy does not plan on letting a golden opportunity pass him by.
“I was thinking about moving down to welterweight and Dan Lardy (promoter) called and said ‘hey, would you be interested at fighting for a title at 185?’ I jumped at it,” revealed Sturdy.
Training with fellow teammates Mike Stumpf, Nate Mohr and Pat Curran, Sturdy has been sharpening his striking and wrestling while constantly improving his ground game under the tutelage of Jeff Curran. Sturdy started his Mixed Martial Arts career in 2007 and has compiled a record of 6-1-1 over the last couple of years. A win over Van Meer could lead the way towards many opportunities in the future.
“It would mean a lot. I think it would open a lot of doors for me to bigger fights and sponsors,” said the Crystal Lake, Ill. fighter.
Mike Van Meer is a long time veteran of Midwest Cage Championships and Extreme Challenge. He has amassed a record of over forty-five fights and has faced some tough opposition.
“He’s a tough guy. He’s strong; all-around he has a good game. He has pretty good striking and pretty ground work,” commented Sturdy. “He has a definite disadvantage in reach and I don’t think his wrestling is very strong. His Jiu-Jitsu is strong but getting guys to the ground…he has issues with. I think my wrestling is going to be the difference in this fight.”
“(Expect) some vicious ground and pound tonight.”
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Extreme Challenge middleweight championship fight:
-Mike Van Meer vs. Ryan Sturdy