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Josh Foster Upsets JJ Holmes at XKO 13

Full results from the Xtreme Knockout card in Arlington, TX:

XKO Middleweight Main Event
Josh Foster (5-3) SUB RD 2 (Triangle) JJ Holmes (2-3)
Time of Submission: 2:18 RD 2

What is up with these East Texas Boys?  Longview, TX established itself as a haven for fighters with absolutely no quit in their hearts.  Josh Foster inarguably exemplifies this trait as he rallied back from a the brink of defeat at the hand of the uber-talented JJ Holmes to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.  Early on the fight was all Holmes.  The wrestling/grappling stand out utilized his patented double leg takedown to completely control the opening round.  Even when the fight was on the feet it was Holmes who did the most damage with some punishing knees while in the clinch.  Holmes continued the beating into the second round but Foster would not go away and Holmes seemed to slow as the round went on.  Finally, Foster seized his moment as he was able to pull Holmes into his guard and lock on a quick triangle.  At first it appeared Holmes would power through it but Foster made the necessary adjustment to sink the choke in even deeper putting Holmes to sleep and securing the unlikeliest of victories.  

XKO 180 Lbs. Catchweight Fight
Hayward Charles (3-2) SUB RD 1 (Triangle) Andre Kavanaugh (2-2)
Time of Submission: 0:45 RD 1

Kavanaugh is an intimidating presence to say the least.  After all, the man is built like a tree stump and is as fast as he is strong.  Unfortunately, Kavanaugh ran up against a fighter who lacks any sense of fear in the cage in noted jiu-jitsu practitioner Hayward Charles.  Despite catching a number of hard punches in the early seconds of the fight Charles was able to quickly pull guard and caught Kavanaugh in an absolutely airtight triangle choke that left the Austin native little other option than tapping out.  To say it was an impressive win would be a vast understatement.  

XKO Flyweight Fight
Randy Villarreal (8-6) TKO RD 1 (Strikes) Frank Ortega (4-7)
Time of Stoppage: 2:41 RD 1

Randy Villarreal has long-lamented the fact that he would prefer to fight at the flyweight limit of 125 pounds.  Unfortunately for Villarreal opponents at that weight class are few and far between so the majority of his career has been spent fighting opponents much bigger than himself.  Saturday night Villarreal finally got the flyweight fight he had been longing for and if his performance is any indication of what he is capable of doing at 125 then the flyweight division may be collectively put on notice.  Against Ortega, a very dangerous fighter with sick jiu-jitsu, Villarreal was merciless in his aggression.  Despite Ortega trying in vain to take the fight to the ground and work from his guard Villarreal seemed more than willing to accommodate him on the ground.  Once Villarreal was able to take the full mount he rained down a seemingly endless assault of elbows that left the referee with little option other than to waive a halt to the bout.  

XKO Bantamweight Fight
Eliazar Rodriguez (1-1) SUB RD 2 (Rear Naked Choke) Homer Garcia (0-1)
Time of Submission: 1:07 RD 2

In what turned out to be your classic “grappler vs. striker” match Rodriguez, thie grappler in this scenario emerged victrious with a workman like performance.  However, early on it appeared that Garcia’s boxing would rule the day as he got off to a quick start battering and bloodying Rodriguez’s face behind a stiff jab and fluid combinations.  Rodriguez would rally back in the second round with some punches of his own but once he took Garcia to the ground the fight was over as he deftly slipped in a perfect rear naked choke to secure the victory.  

XKO Middleweight Fight
Ciprian Hangan (2-0) TKO RD 1 (Strikes) Chris Collins (0-1)
Time of Stoppage: 1:37 TD 1

I freely admit that watching Cipian Hangan fight is a guilty pleasure of mine.  The guy is a non-stop whirling dervish of tenacity and his penchant for knocking people out has quickly earned him the praise of fight fans here in North Texas.  Given his love of standing and banging with his opponents it often comes as a surprise that Hangan is a judoko expert with over 20 years of experience.  However, none of that judo was on display against Collins who was overwhelmed with the non-stop aggression and tornado flurries of punches that has Collins hitting the deck multiple times in the round.  Eventually Hangan grew tired of toying with Collins and after dropping him again with a hard right hand before raining down punishment that promoted the referee to stop the fight. 

XKO 175 lbs Catchweight
Aaron Culpepper (1-0) UD Steven Cloud (0-1)
Scores: 30-27, 30-27, 29-28

For a pair of fighters making their pro debut both Culpepper and Cloud put on a technical battle that belied their inexperience as professionals.  While it became pretty evident that Cloud was looking to take the fight to the ground to exploit his jiu-jitsu prowess it was Culpepper’s stricking and submission defense that carried him over three exciting rounds to victory.  Despite being as game a fighter as one could ever see in the cage, in the end, Culpepper was simply too much and his boxing and impressive ground and pound carried him to an impressive victory.  

XKO Welterweight Fight
Josh Lee (8-7) SUB RD 2 (Rear Naked Choke) Roy Spoon (7-4)
Time of Submission: 3:27

Joshua Lee upset the apple card in the night’s opening bout with a thorough domination of highly touted contender Roy Spoon.  Lee wasted little time in displaying his incredible wrestling ability in securing takedowns and ground control throughout the opening round forcing Spoon to work of his back for the majority of the rounds.  In the second Spoon looked to right his ship and caught Lee shooting in with a tight guillotine seconds into the round.  However, Lee would not be denied and after some nice transitions on the ground was able to sink in the rear naked choke that put Spoon to sleep.


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