Jon Tuck of Guam turned in another impressive performance to put himself squarely in the hunt for the Pacific X-Treme Combat lightweight championship.
Picking up from where he left off from his last fight, a seven-second demolition of Filipino mixed martials arts star and Southeast Asian Games gold medalist Eduard Folayang in 2009, Tuck finished off Filipino-American Tristan Arenal in the first round of their number one contender fight in the main event of PXC 28 at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.
The match started off looking fairly even on the feet as both fighters attempted to establish a rhythm.
Arenal opened things up by landing a strong combination on Tuck. But it didn’t take long before the Abu Dhabi World Professional Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu champion took Arenal to the ground with a takedown.
Arenal tried to catch Tuck with some upkicks from his back before Tuck started dropping heavy bombs from a standing position, including one that finally sent Arenal to sleep.
The fight was stopped with 1:13 remaining in the first round.
“It was just strategy and perfect timing,” said Tuck of his knockout win.
With the win, Tuck set up a title fight with current PXC lightweight champion Harris Sarmiento, who won the belt at PXC 26 in Resorts World Manila last August.
“I know they’re trying to set me up with Harris, but he’s my kuya from another nanay,” said Tuck right after the fight.
“Every time he goes to Guam, I take care of him as much as I can,” Tuck later shared. “I train with him and even going as far as cutting coconuts for him and letting him drink that buko juice to recover. There’s some brotherly love there.”
The champion Sarmiento, who was in attendance at the event, entered the cage after the fight to give his thoughts on the matchup with Tuck.
“I’m the champion,” said Sarmiento. “Whoever wants to fight me, just bring it.”
Earlier, two Team Lakay Wushu bets dominated their respective matchups to notch first round wins.
Denver Labador connected on a big head kick before following up with some vicious ground and pound to finish Orlimer Celeste at 1:07 in the opening round. Teammate Crisanto Pitpitunge displayed some impressive wrestling against Jerry Cimeni, pulling off two highlight reel slams before earning a submission win.
Ale Cali of Davao also gave the crowd a treat when he punished Guamanian Dylan Pablo through three rounds to earn an easy decision win.
Cali taunted Pablo as he danced around with fancy footwork and played with misleading feints to the delight of the partisan crowd. He performed moves commonly seen in comedies, including twirling his right hand in the air before throwing a punch with his left.
The strategy, according to Cali, was not make fun of his opponent but to confuse him and keep him from establishing a proper rhythm in the fight.
The main event bout capped an exciting night of MMA action. As UFC fighter Brandon Vera predicted, the card was full of furious finishes, with only two of nine fights going the distance.
In the other bouts, Elliot Untalan defeated Rolando Dy with an opening round submission; Korean David Cho squeaked by Filipino Geje Eustaquio; Jon Reyes TKO’d Virgil Ortigas; Moses Baca defeated Jerry Legaspi; and Alvin Dacdac defeated Josh Albarez.
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