Kickdown Classic 10 Recap

by Jason Martinez


April 17, 2004

 Denver, Colorado



Hello fight fans, Jason Martinez bringing you another ringside report. Last I wrote, I covered Kickdown

Classic 9 (KDC) this past February so I am amped to bring you this write-up!

owner Steve Alley seems to be on the right track with his shows as they always offer multiple title

matches. KDC 10: Battleground was no exception as we were treated to eight NHB/MMA bouts - three of

which were title matches. We also witnessed five stand-up matches, one for a belt. Without further delay,

let's get down to business!  


Fight 1 - Light Heavyweight Title Bout (vacant)

Never to keep the crowd waiting, our first match was for the vacant light heavyweight NHB belt. Mario

LaRosa (6'2", 200 lbs.) came to the ring with a 6-2 record in NHB; Mario was our first fighter out of Chuck

Daly's Kongo Do Kickboxing school in Colorado Springs, CO. His opponent, fighting out of rival Colorado

Springs school, The Defense Institute, had a 5-3 record, Jeremy Brown (6'1", 198 lbs.). Jeremy wastes no

time in shooting for a double leg. Mario, with a nice sprawl, keeps Jeremy from scoring the takedown. As

Jeremy continues to look for the take down, Mario holds position and slides in a forearm for an attempt at a

front choke. Mario, sinking the choke deeper, rolls into guard and extends his hips. Jeremy stays working,

and is eventually able to escape the hold. Jeremy is able to attain mount from Mario's guard. At 2:18 of the

first round, Jerome Locke (the ref) steps in to stop the fight due to Mario turning his back as Jeremy rains

down strikes. Jeremy Brown becomes the new menís light heavyweight champion for the KDC.  


Fight 2 - Lightweight Bout

The line-up continues with another NHB battle. Danny Orona (5'4", 150 lbs.), with a record of 1-0, was our

second fighter to represent Kongo Do Kickboxing. Across the ring, May Tec Warriors' (Thornton, CO.),

Antonio Sena (5'6", 148 lbs.), with a record of 1-3, would be the challenger. Danny is the aggressor as he

lands a solid leg kick, followed by a straight right punch. Sena, seeing an opening, shoots for a successful

double leg and lands in half-guard. As both men work for position, it is Sena that is able to secure a key

lock to the left arm of Orona for the tap out at 1:09 of the first round.


Fight 3 - Kickboxing Lightweight Bout  

Our first Kickboxing match saw Marlon Canete (5'9", 150 lbs.) making his fight debut for Keith Shmelzer

and Vic Brabo's Team Freedom Fighters out of Golden, CO. Also making his fight debut for The House Of

Martial Arts in Aurora, CO. was Jack Johnson (5'8", 150 lbs..). Both of these warriors held nothing back as

they began to throw blows with no feel out. Canete starts with the better connections, as he scores with a

low leg kick, followed by a left, right, straight. Johnson looks more off balance than hurt as he slips to the

mat. I don't think the ref calls it as a knock down as he restarts the action. Johnson, frustrated for falling,

comes back strong, pushing his man to the ropes twice with combo's. Johnson capitalizes on his position

by keeping Canete on the defense until the bell. 


Second round - Both men are aggressive as they each connect with flurries - Canete stopping Johnson in his

tracks with a solid right cross. Johnson feeling the effect of the hit, ties up Canete in a corner. Canete is able

to land a few more combo's as Johnson is only able to muster a few single shots.  


Round Three - both men look extremely gassed as they throw single shots to start the round. Johnson lands

two kicks to the body, which look to steal the remaining wind from Canete's sails. Johnson controls the rest

of the round, landing combo's that end Canete in a corner three times before the bell. Johnson is able to

edge a split decision win over Canete with the Judges scores as follows -  29-27Johnson, 30-29 Canete,

30-28 Johnson.  


Fight 4 - Welterweight Bout  

Team Scorpion's (Rapid City SD.) Josh Usera (5'8", 155 lbs..), with a record of  1-1, would return to the ring

to take on Rex Payne Jr. (5'11", 155 lbs.), who's coming in with a record of 0-1, hailing from New Orleans,

LA., and fighting for Team Anaconda. This would be our third NHB fight. There is a short feel out as Payne

attacks the legs with kicks. Usera, finding his reach, lands with a nice right. Payne, walking right through the

punch, lands a few blows of his own. Payne continues to come forward checking with the leg kicks. Usera,

waiting for the shot, stops Payne where he stands with another right to the jaw. Usera moves in for the

clinch, landing knees to Payne's gut. At 22 seconds of the very first round, Payne walks into the third right

that puts an end to his night.  


Fight 5 - Kickboxing Welterweight Bout  

Kongo Do's third fighter, Billy Dixson (5'9", 157 lbs..), coming in with a record of 2-0, took on 3-D Martial

arts' (Clarence Thatch's school in Denver) Jason Burton (5'8", 157 lbs..), with a record of 2-2, in the

second Kickboxing bout of the fight card. Dixson controls the action with low leg kicks followed by flurries

that allow Burton to work Dixson to the ropes. While on the ropes, Burton lands the better punches, Dixson

landing kicks to escape. Again, Burton is able to corner Dixson and land before the sound of the bell.


Second round - Burton looks to check the leg kicks as well as attempt a few of his own. At 56 seconds of

the second round, Dixson lands his kick, followed by a right straight down the pipe to floor Burton. I did not

think Burton was as hurt as he was until the ref hit seven on his count. When Burton made no attempt to

stand, I knew Dixson had won the fight.  


Fight 6 - Light Heavyweight Bout  

Les Harness (6'0", 200 lbs..), with a record of 1-1, was yet another Kongo Do fighter taking on Brighton

Co.ís. Team Dog Pound Joe Sena (6'0", 200 lbs..) who was making his debut. We see the fighters meet in

the middle and go toe to toe. Each lands there fair share of shots, but it is Sena that catches Narness with a

hard right that puts Harness on his back. Harness still game, shoots a heel kick from the mat - this allows

enough time for him to stand back up. Unfortunately for Harness, Sena connects with a monstrous right that

drops Harness again. Sena is able to land one more strike before the ref steps in at 37 seconds to end the



Fight 7 - Kickboxing Super Heavyweight Bout  

This third kickboxing brawl was between two Super Heavyweights - both coming from Rapid City, SD. Tony

Kelly (5'9", 245 lbs..) with a record of 6-1, came to the ring representing Dynamic Martial Arts. Pat James

(6'1", 255 lbs..), sporting a 1-0 record, was our second stable mate of Team Scorpion. We start with a feel

out followed by Kelly striking the legs. James keeps moving forward, lands a few leg kicks, right punch

combo's. James comes on strong before the bell, scoring with a flurry of punches.   


Second round -  We see back an forth action - each man stunning the other, but not able to finish. Kelly

lands a beautiful left hook to the ribs, then goes upstairs for a thumping right to James' head. Due to the

combo at the end of round two, Pat James is unable to answer the bell for the third round.  



KDC 10 Action



Fight 8 - Kickboxing Middleweight Bout  

Rob Graff (5'11", 174 lbs..), with a record of 1-1, from the Defense Institute returned for his seventh

appearance in the KDC. This would be a kickboxing bout against House of Martial Arts' Colby Snyder (5'8",

172 lbs..), coming in with a record of 4-2. There was no time lost as these two were butting heads at the bell.

Snyder stays his distance as he lands a straight left, then a right high kick to the head. Graff, not liking the

attention, rushes Snyder to the ropes where he throws a flurry of punches, and a kick that lands as a knee.

Graff receives a warning for kneeing, and the action continues. Snyder is able to land first with a low kick,

left, right punch. Graff's answer - rushing Snyder to the corner with wild punches. Graff lands a few punches

before they clinch; We have a ref break, and Snyder again combo's, Graff pushing him to the ropes. Snyder 

lands another high kick to the head to end the round.  


Second round - Graff starts to answer back with counters off the combo's of Snyder. Just when Graff seems

to have found his ring presence, Snyder lands his low kick, left, right punch combo, and Graff rushes him to

the ropes. Snyder is able to fend off most of the rushes with leg kicks. Snyder ends strong with a straight

right punch that stuns Graff.


Third round - Snyder continues his game plan as Graff tries to push him to the ropes. Snyder finally starts to

circle out so he does not get caught on the ropes. Graff does not pick up the pace as Snyder wins by

unanimous decision.  


Fight 9 - Middleweight Bout  

Our ninth (fifth NHB) fight features another one of  Kongo Do's men, Phil Tafoya (5'8", 170 lbs.), with a

record of 3-2. Joey Welch (5'7", 170 lbs.), coming in with a record of 1-1, was opposite Tafoya, representing

Team Dog Pound. This match was quite uneventful as the action ended the same way every time there was

a stand-up. Tafoya throws a low kick that is caught by Welch, and then Tafoya gets the double leg. We have

a stop in action to move the fighters to the middle of the ring. Tafoya does an excellent job of nullifying the

attack of Welch, as he stays busy with feet on thighs.  


Second round - Tafoya throws the low kick which Welch catches for the double leg. Another move to the

middle restarts the action with Welch in Tafoya's guard. There is a stand-up due to lack of action. Again,

Welch gets the takedown. Welch stands while still in guard to land a few shots. This gives Tafoya enough

leverage to reverse position. The round ends with Welch pulling guard.  


Third round - Both looking gassed out, Tafoya again makes the mistake of kicking - Welch gets the double

leg but no action has the ref standing the fighters up. This time, Welch flick's a few punches out, and Tafoya

tries to counter. Welch clinches and begins to land knees and strikes. Tafoya looks to turn his back as he

grabs the ropes. At this point, the fight is over - unfortunately, our ref does not agree. A good 20-30 seconds

pass, Tafoya, holding onto the ropes, does not get a warning. The crowd begins to get irate as they scream

for the ref to get the fighters off the ropes. Tafoya eventually taps out at 2:35 of the third round.  


Fight 10 - Super Lightweight Title Bout  

Up for grabs in this fight was the super lightweight NHB title. Josh Barlow (6'0", 152 lbs..), sporting a record

of 3-1, representing Team Scorpion, took on Beau Whipple (5'8", 152 lbs..) with a 11-2 record who

represents Team War Party out of Denver. Whipple looked to be the aggressor as he connected with a left

low kick, right punch combo. Barlow unfazed, countered with a left hook. Again, Whipple comes in with a leg

kick but it is Barlow who connects with a straight right that puts Whipple on the canvas. Whipple recovers

quickly as Barlow jumps on him for some ground and pound. Unable to finish Whipple, Barlow attacks the

legs with submissions. It looks like Whipple will survive as Barlow stands-up with Whipple's leg still locked.

In an amazing move, Barlow applies a standing Achilles ankle lock at 33 seconds to win the super

lightweight NHB belt.  


Fight 11 - Middleweight Bout

In what was the turn around fight of the night, Kongo Do's Donnie Lyles (5'10", 178 lbs..) began his career

against Pat Smith's Team Torcher student, Joe Trujillo (6'0", 178 lbs..), with a record of 1-0 in our seventh

NHB battle. Trujillo came in with a sculpted physique plus Pat Smith's tutelage which had me thinking this is

a mismatch. Lyles, surprising all in attendance, immediately clinches and gets an outside leg trip landing in

Trujillo's half guard. Lyles is unable to maintain position as Trujillo reverses into mount. Underestimating

Lyles, Trujillo sits up and tries to finish the fight with strikes. Lyles easily reverses and gains mount. Now it

is Lyles' turn to deal some punishment. Lyles lands two shots to the face as Trujillo gives his back. Lyles

sinks in his hooks and at 1:14 of the first round, Trujillo is tapping to a rear naked choke. Lyles proved to all

in attendance that training hard and never giving up gets you a long way in our sport. I will take nothing away

from Lyles by saying - I can't wait for a rematch!!!  


Fight 12 - Kickboxing Welterweight Title Bout

Advantage Martial arts' (Arvada, CO.) Byron Sowell (5'11", 160 lbs..), with a record of 2-0, was set to take

on Donald Cerrone (6'0", 160 lbs..), also undefeated at 4-0, who fights for Team Freedom Fighters. The

winner of this Kickboxing match would earn the men's lightweight kickboxing title. I was very impressed with

Sowell as he seemed to stick to his game plan. Although Cerrone had the heavier handed single shots, it

was Sowell who stayed the pace with better combo's and effectively using the ring. Cerrone landed a push

kick to the gut, followed with a right that had Sowell hitting the floor. Sowell quickly gets up but still receives

the standing eight count. Cerrone runs across the ring trying to land his flying snap kick which misses. 

Sowell counters with a right that sends Cerrone to the ground and gives him a standing eight count.  


Second round - Cerrone begins to string punches together for some nice combo's. Sowell still trades with his

man but is unable to hurt Cerrone. Before the bell, Cerrone puts Sowell back down for an eight count.  


Third round - Is all Cerrone, as he score's three knockdowns before the ref declares him the winner and new

lightweight kickboxing champion.  


Fight 13 - Main Event - Middleweight KDC Title Bout

Our main event was the long anticipated rematch from KDC 7 (Oct. 4, 2003), between Matt DeWolf and

John Sargent. In their last meeting, DeWolf landed a left hand in his guard, which gave Sargent a gash over

the right eye that stopped the bout with seconds remaining in the first round. DeWolf received the Belt;

Sargent received 17 stitches and has had six months to heal. A little background - Matt DeWolf was handed

his first loss against Rob Graff at KDC 8 (Jan. 17, 2004). Strange but true, this bout ended in much the same

way as DeWolf/Sargent I. Graff landed a glancing blow that fractured DeWolf's nose. The fight was stopped

by the doctor and Graff became the belt holder. At our last Kickdown, KDC 9 (Feb. 20, 2004), Graff gave up

the belt to pursue his stand-up career.   


Now back to our Main Event at KDC 10, the men's middleweight NHB title match. Matt DeWolf (5'9", 185

lbs..) with a record of 7-1 and a Team Scorpion team member would rematch California's self trained John

Sargent (5'7", 185 lbs..), sporting a record of 2-1, to see who would become the true champion. Much like

there first meeting, Sargent scores the double leg takedown into DeWolf's guard. Sargent attempts to pass

guard with no luck. Making the mistake of extending his arms, DeWolf takes advantage with a textbook arm

bar. At 1:04 of the first round, DeWolf is able to make Sargent tap out to become the champion for the

second time in Kickdown history.


From - Jason Martinez (with a little editing from us - Highlights, color, etc...) would like to thank Jason Martinez for his great work!




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