Tenneson Triumphs at March Mayhem
A sold out crowd, including a wall lined with standing-room spectators, filled the ballroom at the Howard Johnson Hotel in Gallup, NM, this Saturday, March 10, 2012, for T2 Productions' March Mayhem, an MMA event, featuring amateur fighters from all over the Southwest, using the large, spring-loaded cage that was used in the movie "Warrior."
Although the main event suffered a late back-out, one hearty fighter, Daniel Mendez, took the plunge and agreed to fight Andrew Tenneson (Duke City Ronin /Jackson's MMA) with a day-and-a-half notice. That match was over in 44 seconds, but that was plenty of time for Tenneson to display several of the martial arts at his disposal.
As the bell rang, the two fighters touched gloves and backed off, then Tenneson flew back in with a headkick the knocked Mendez back a step. Mendez gamely came forward, swinging a few hooks, which Tenneson checked and returned, then thrilled the crowd with a judo-throw to the mat, followed by a high full mount, which he turned into a body triangle from the top, then deftly flipped him over into an arm bar. Mendez and his team showed great heart and sportsmanship in stepping up to this challenge. Tenneson's coaches and teammates agree: it's about time for Tenneson to go pro.
The co-main event, however, went the distance, as Mean 1 MMA's Josh Moreno faced J5 MMA's Manny Godinez in a heavyweight match that pushed both fighters to the limit. Moreno struck first with a spinning back fist into a body kick, but Godinez caught the foot and took Moreno down. Moreno walked himself up the cage the engage Godinez again, but was taken down again, and Godinez delivered several body shots. However, an eye poke in the first round took a point away from Godinez.
The second round featured more stand-up dominance by Moreno, and ground-dominance by Godinez, but the third saw a big left hook and right cross by Moreno, as well as better take-down defense by the Mean1 fighter, although Godinez did get a takedown toward the end of the round, from which Moreno did escape, standing up to finish the round in his comfort zone, and winning the bout by split decision.
There were 13 other amateur fights that night, featuring fighters from Jackson's MMA, Mean 1 MMA, Perez Fighting Systems, Team Sanchez, Team Lujan, Bio Dog, No Mercy, as well as several independents.
Efren Thompson (Sanchez) def. Mike Escobar (Lujan) after Thompson landed a body shot hard on Escobar's rib. Escobar grabbed his side and Thompson rushed in, but the ref quickly stepped in and stopped the fight TKO at 1:52 of the second round.
Trevor Long (Bio Dog) def. Thomas Mills (Perez) by TKO. Mills struck first with a big left hook into a takedown. Mills reversed to full guard, but Long attempted an arm bar, then reversed again, taking the full-mount. Mills turned his back and after a few seconds of undefended head shots, the referee stopped the match, giving Long the win at 2:36 of the first round.
Brandon Lopez (Sanchez) def. Andres Velarde (Independent) by submission. Velarde started off the match with a takedown, but Lopez reversed and teed off on Velarde, who survived and reversed into the cage. Lopez, however, pulled his head in for a guillotine, and Velarde tapped at 1:42 of first round.
Malcolm Mitchell (Perez) def. Brandon Aragon (Mean1) by TKO. Mitchell started the opening round with a takedown into Aragon's guard. He converted to side mount then full guard, but Aragon was able to catch a leg and got the half guard back, attempting an arm bar. Mitchell escaped and dropped hammer fists, but Aragon finished the first round with another arm bar attempt.
The second round saw a right hook by Mitchell, answered by a takedown into side mount by Aragon. He took Mitchell's back and dropped hooks on his head, then stretched him out for an RNC-attempt. However, Mitchell bucked out and reversed to full guard. Aragon attempted a triangle, but Mitchell twisted out into a full mount and finished the round by teeing off on Aragon for the last 10 seconds. Aragon staggered back into the ring for the final round, but Mitchell promptly knocked him down, and the ref stopped the match at :10 of the third round.
Stacey Cly (No Mercy) def. Virgilo Pinto (Jackson's) by TKO. Pinto started the fight with two takedowns, but a knee to the groin brought him to his knees. However, the referee did not see the low blow, and Cly rushed in to finish him, and when he did not defend himself, the referee stopped the match at 1:17 of the first round, giving Cly the TKO victory.
Richard Becenti (Duke City Ronin) def. Brent Brown (Sanchez) after a quick exchange into a clinch, then Becenti got the takedown into a rear-naked-choke, and Brown was forced to tap at 1:17 of first round.
Joseph Hartnell (Independent) def. Brandon Watts (Independent) by TKO. Watts started the match with a takedown, but Hartnell responded with a guillotine attempt, which he escaped and the two stood again. An overhand right knocked Watts down, but he got up, only to walk into an uppercut that knocked him down hard, and the referee stepped in and stopped the match at 1:51 of the first round.
Tally Touchine (Sanchez) def. Nathan Tsosie (Blackwater MMA) by submission. Tsosie struck first with a takedown, but Touchine quickly applied an arm bar, and Tsosie was forced to tap at :33 of the first round. George Clynes (Jackson's) def. Steve Fierro (Bio Dog) by unanimous decision. Clynes applied regular body and leg kicks, stuffing Fierro's takedown attempts. Both fighters were spent by the third round, but Clynes continued to dominate, even at the slower pace, and earned the unanimous decision.
Falon Ring(Mean 1 MMA) def. Rudy Kennedy (No Mercy) by submission. Ring gave Kennedy no opportunities, striking first with a big straight kick to his chest, then a takedown into half-guard, where he postured up and rained head and body shots. Kennedy tried to pull him in, but Ring escaped and continued the punishment from above. He then passed to side control, then pulled Kennedy into a body triangle, forcing him to tap at 2:41 of the first round.
Angelo Lincoln (Sanchez) def. Virgil Begay (Jackson's) by submission. Begay struck first with leg kicks, answered by straight rights for Lincoln, who took him down into his guard. The two stood back up, exchanging combinations for the rest of the round. Begay started off the second round with a nice overhand left, but Lincoln answered with a takedown, scrambling around to catch Begay in an armbar at 1:38 of the second round.
Steve Garcia (Mean 1 MMA) def. Adrian Yazzie (No Mercy) by submission. Garcia struck first with an overhand left and leg kicks, stuffing Yazzie's takedown attempts, and taking his back. He wrapped the body lock, leaning forward, then turning around for the rear naked choke at 2:09.
Juan Aranda (Lujan) def. Levi Lucero (Perez) by submission. Lucero started the action with a takedown into full guard, switching to half, but Aranda reversed and took Lucero's back, dropping head shots, but Lucero pushed up against the cage to escape. Aranda attempted a guillotine, Lucero escaped and delivered a few body shots, but Aranda finished the first round with an arm bar attempt. Lucero started the second round with leg and body kicks, answered by a takedown for Aranda, who took Lucero's back, then side, but Lucero escaped and took Aranda down, but Aranda went in for the arm again, and got the submission at 2:41 of the second frame.
T2 Productions plans to put on another big amateur MMA event this July or August.
Photo by Will Fox, aka "The Fox Identity"