Tachi Palace Fights held its eighth edition on Friday night at the Tachi Palace in Lemoore, Calif. Titles changed hands and upsets were had.
UFC veteran David “The Crow” Loiseau stepped into the cage in the main event to challenge Tachi middleweight champion Leopoldo Serao. It wasn’t the most exciting fight of the night, but in the end, Loiseau, coming off of a failed attempt in the UFC, took the champion to task.
Serao played his game throughout the fight, pulling guard whenever possible, while Loiseau was headhunting from the opening bell. Serao came close early with a couple of strong gogoplata attempts, but as the fight wore on, he was less successful in his submission attacks.
Known for his explosive striking, Loiseau surprisingly kept a slow pace through the fight, looking to land that one big punch or kick to end it. But when the fight got into the later rounds, he ramped up the urgency when Serao pulled guard. He increased the intensity of his ground and pound attacks, opening several cuts on the Brazilian’s head.
Once the fight hit the mat in round five, Loiseau sensed that Serao was in trouble and unleashed his patented elbow attack. The pace slowed slightly a little over a minute into the round, the ringside doctor wiped the blood from a crimson drenched Serao, and referee John McCarthy called a halt to fight based on the doctor’s recommendation.
His first time in the Tachi cage, Loiseau captured middleweight gold.
A staple of the Tachi Palace mixed martial arts scene, flyweight champion Ulysses Gomez returned following a one-fight stint with Bellator, looking to re-establish his position as the champ. Darrell Montague had other ideas.
Montague put on a performance reminiscent of UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz, taking Gomez completely out of his game for the entire fight. Where Gomez wanted to go to the ground, about the only times he got there were courtesy of Monague’s striking.
Gomez had a tough weight cut to make the 125-pound limit for the fight, and it showed. Montague used a fast pace to sap any energy that Gomez had left and cut him over the left eye early in the fight. The cut worsened as the fight wore on, obviously distracting the champion.
For the duration of the five rounds, Montague chopped away at Gomez with a wide array of strikes. He threw everything thing from punches to kicks to elbows to knees, and worked everything from high to low at all angles. Gomez had no answer.
Montague walked out of the cage with a unanimous decision in hand and the Tachi Palace Fights flyweight belt around his waist.
Jussier da Silva entered the night widely regarded as the top flyweight fighter in the world. WEC veteran Ian McCall disagreed… and he backed up his assertions.
The fight started off as most expected, da Silva dominating the opening round on the ground. He got McCall to the mat, and spent the majority of the round working from McCall’s back, a body triangle locked on, but unable to finish, which is one of his biggest criticisms. From then on, it was all McCall.
McCall took over in round two, finally finding his rhythm in the stand-up striking, and he never looked back. He used his superior boxing to keep da Silva at bay and frustrate him at every turn, catching the Brazilian with the occasional uppercut and knee strike to win a unanimous decision.
McCall, at 9-2 and a former bantamweight, is now in the mix at the top of the flyweight class. He could be the first fighter on tap to challenge the new champion, Montague.
Edgar Garcia made quick work of Mike Moreno on Friday night, submitting him with a guillotine choke less than two minutes into the opening round of their fight. It was a strong statement from Garcia, who was one many fighters on the card trying work his way back to the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Former UFC lightweight John Gunderson was derailed from his attempt to return to the Octagon, running into a much bigger and more athletic Dominique Robinson. Robinson doesn’t have near the experience that Gunderson does, but he used his size and power to control Gunderson throughout the fight, finally putting him away with a ground and pound flurry early in the third round.
Lightweights Fabricio Camoes and Steve Lopez both entered the night in their first fight since being show the door from the UFC, each trying to fight his way back to the big show. It was the Team Blackhouse fighter, Camoes, who quickly took a return step. Camoes unleashed a head kick that put Lopez down and out 23 seconds into the fight.
His next fight won’t be a return to the UFC just yet, however, as former “Ultimate Fighter” winner Efrain Escudero stepped in the cage with him after the fight.
The promotion announced the two will lock horns at Tachi Palace Fights’ May 5 event.
Tachi Palace Fights 8 Full Results:
-David Loiseau def. Leopoldo Serao by TKO (Elbows) at 1:12, R5
-Darrell Montague def. Ulysses Gomez by Unanimous Decision (50-45, 50-45, 50-45), R5
-Ian McCall def. Jussier da Silva by Unanimous Decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), R3
-Edgar Garcia def. Mike Moreno by Submission (Guillotine Choke) at 1:47, R1
-Dominique Robinson def. John Gunderson by TKO (Strikes) at 0:41, R3
-Fabricio Camoes def. Steve Lopez by KO (Head Kick) at 0:23, R1
-Doug Hunt def. Andrew “Mickey” Martinez by TKO (Strikes) at 4:27, R1
-Andy Miranda def. Ryan Burton by Submission (Triangle Choke) at 1:06, R1
-Collin Hart def. Mike Arellano by Submission (Rear Naked Choke) at 1:32, R1
-Tyler Freeland def. Diego Melendez by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28), R3
-Alan Jouban def. Kyle Griffin by KO (Knee) at 0:15, R1