On May 7th, ICE made its return to Toris Station in Fairfield, Ohio with ICE 9: The Rematch. The event was built around the rematch between Kerry The Meat Truck Schall against MMA veteran Chris Herring and with the way their last fight ended, this rematch was sure to blow the roof off of Toris Station.
On May 7th, ICE made its return to Toris Station in Fairfield, Ohio with ICE 9: The Rematch. The event was built around the rematch between Kerry The Meat Truck Schall against MMA veteran Chris Herring and with the way their last fight ended, this rematch was sure to blow the roof off of Toris Station. The card had other ICE veterans in action, such as local favorites Ron Fields and Gerald Pierson in action as well. Fighters from Indiana, Iowa, North Carolina, and all parts of Ohio were represented along with two fighters training out of the famed Miletich Fighting Systems. With the new up and comers ready to display their talents, the crowd, who was slowly building to capacity, was eager to get the action under way.
The first fight of the night pitted Rockingham, North Carolina fighter Brian Williams taking on John Moore out of Monroe Martial Arts. Both fighters looked evenly skilled as Williams looked for the opening takedown and found himself fighting off a guillotine choke hooked in by Moore in the early goings. After fighting to escape, Moore was able to take down Williams and began to ground and pound, dropping punches from the top. After noticing that the fight was stalling, special referee Rich Ace Franklin stood the two fighters back up and both fighters looked for the one big punch to end the fight. As Moore moved in to strike, Williams accidentally caught Moore with a low blow. Referee Franklin acknowledged the low blow and awarded Moore the five-minute rest period. The low blow must have sparked a fire within Moore as after the rest period was over, he immediately went in for the shoot and took Williams down once again. Moore worked his way on top and knowing that the round was about to end, tried one last time for a guillotine choke. Williams fought valiantly trying to relieve the pressure but just could not hold on long enough and tapped due to guillotine choke at 2:59 of round 1.
The second fight of the night pitted Josh Howat fighting out of Davenport, Iowa and the famed Miletich Fighting camp against a tough Cincinnati fighter in Anthony Smith. Both fighters looked to throw down as the fight began, slowly feeling each other out. Smith landed some good early leg kicks and was able to get the first takedown and landed right in the guard of Howat. Howat kept his cool and was able to negate the Smith attack and slowly made his way back to his feet. Once there, Howat returned the favor and took Smith back down and began his own brand of ground and pound. Not much damage was being done as the bell sounded to end the first round.
With both fighters looking a little winded, the round began with both fighters circling each other. With each looking to land a good shot, Howat left himself open for a split second and Smith was able to get a grip of Howat and performed a huge slam to the floor. The crowd erupted as both fighters jockeyed for position, with Howat getting the upper hand. Smith looked to be tiring out as Howat was able to take full mount. From there, he began to rain down punches to Smith who did everything he could to buck off the attack, but couldnt defend enough and was forced to tap from strikes at 1:42 of round 2.
The final fight before the first intermission pitted a big fighter in Nick Ollberding from Fairfield, Ohio against ICE veteran Gerald Pierson. Pierson looked to keep the bigger fighter away as Ollberding bull rushed the fighter and was able to secure the takedown. From there, Pierson had nowhere to go. Up against the fence, Ollberding rained down five to six jackhammer punches to Piersons face and the referee was forced to stop the fight at :49 seconds of round 1. Initially, I thought the fight would have been a little bit closer, as I have seen Pierson fight in the past, but then I was informed that Pierson took the fight on 20 minutes notice. You always hear fighters taking fights on a few weeks notice, but 20 minutes notice? Take nothing away from Ollberding as he did have a very impressive performance, but Pierson gets my vote as tough guy of the night. Taking a fight on 20 minutes notice against a very strong and dangerous opponent in Ollberding, deserved a round of cheers and applause, which the crowd and myself, was willing to oblige.
Once the intermission was over, the 4th fight of the night pitted Kevin Rinear from Osgood, IN against local ICE veteran Trevor Garrett. Round 1 started out fast and furious as Garrett was looking for the shot and Rinear looking to keep the fight standing. Garrett was able to get the first takedown and worked from the top, delivering punches to the head of Rinear. Rinear fought from his back and was slowly able to bring the fight back up to his feet, where both fighters were in the clinch against the fence. Rinear then threw a huge knee that visibly affected Garrett and as they backed off the fence, Garrett winced in pain. Smelling blood, Rinear went in for the kill, but Garrett ducked the punches and was able to secure the takedown. Always working from the bottom, Rinear positioned himself perfectly and secured a kimura on Garrett. But before he could really tweak it up, the bell sounded and Garrett seemingly escaped the round to the dismay of Rinear.
As round 2 started, Garrett looked to want no part of the standup war and quickly did the right thing and took Rinear to the ground. Once there, Garrett ground and pounded Rinear from the guard, but was unable to do any real damage. With the action stalling, Franklin stood back up the fighters, where Garrett was able to clinch Rinear and perform a huge slam. From there, it seemed that Garrett was going to begin his ground and pound attack, but Rinear had a different plan in mind. As Garrett was throwing down punches, Rinear did a smooth reversal and found himself in the guard of Garrett throwing down punches. But it was just a little too late as the bell sounded and put an end to round 2.
With both rounds very close, everyone in the crowd knew this was anyones fight. Garrett went back to his bread and butter and was able to secure another one of his takedowns during the fight. Knowing that he had to try to fight from his back, Rinear was able to secure a triangle choke on Garrett as the crowd began cheering looking for a submission. But the experienced Garrett stayed clam and slowly worked his way out of the submission hold. For the rest of the round, Garrett was able to control Rinear while working in his guard, and did just enough to keep referee Franklin from standing up the fight. The round concluded with Garrett on top and both fighters were exhausted after the fight. The scores were read and Garrett was awarded a unanimous decision victory bettering Rinear by the scores of 29-28, 29-28, and 30-28.
The 5th fight of the night, not only was the most exciting and action packed, but also was the MMA debut of a journalist for the popular mans magazine Mens Journal. Sam Sheridan, who is a journalist in his day job, hails from Massachusetts and has been training at the Miletich Camp. He has trained Muay Thai in Thailand and was looking for his first MMA victory at the ICE show. Standing in his way, would be local Cincinnati fighter and disciple of the Rowe Kickboxing Academy in Jason Keneman. Both fighters were determined to keep the fight standing, with neither one even attempting to go to the ground. Both fighters displayed kickboxing skills, mixing up legs kicks with stiff jabs to the other opponents face. The first round had each fighter landing bomb after bomb. Sheridan seemed to be the aggressor, stalking Keneman around the octagon, while Keneman played the counterpuncher role, countering at will. Both fighters had their moments and round 1 ended with fists flying from all directions as the crowd erupted in cheers.
The much anticipated round 2 began the same as round 1 ended, with bombs being thrown. Keneman did attempt to strike to the body, probably hoping to tire out Sheridan, who still had the game plan of bringing the fight to Keneman. This game plan proved to be his initial downfall, as Keneman began to find his range and stunned Sheridan with a straight right that hit right on the button, knocking his mouthpiece out. The numerous punches took it toll as a huge cut opened over the left eye of Sheridan. Keneman even began dirty boxing, a la Randy Couture, which further opened the cut. After a flurry of punches, Referee Franklin stopped the action to have the doctor take a look at the cut. After a few minutes of discussing, the fight was stopped and Keneman was awarded a hard earned victory by doctor stoppage at 1:33 of round 2.
The next fight of the evening pitted the youngest fighter of the show, in 18-year-old Adam Bass taking on John Coleman. In this fight, youth did prevail over experience, as Bass opened the fight with a huge slam that gained him side control over the outmatched Coleman. Coleman was able to gain half guard, but could not stop the onslaught of Bass. After dropping numerous punches and vicious elbows from the half guard, Coleman had nowhere to go and was forced to tap from strikes at 1:38 of round 1. With the impressive showing, the future looks bright for this young fighter and we hope to see him on future ICE cards.
The final fight before the last intermission, pitted 230 lb. Sam Riley out of Dayton, Ohio taking on 240 lb police officer, Rod Excessive Force Housley. Housley, who trains with Meat Truck Inc. looked very calm before the storm. But once the bell sounded, the storm was unleashed. Housley was able to press Riley up against the cage, trying valiantly to bring the big man down. Riley did his best to stay on his feet, but Housley was able to get a hold of Riley and slammed him down onto the floor of the octagon. Housley quickly moved into side control and began raining down powerful punches, while also locking in what seemed to be a modified side neck crank. Riley had absolutely no chance to escape and began tapping. Referee Franklin was keeping a very close eye on the strikes that he did not even notice that Riley was tapping. After noticing the tap, he quickly jumped in and even Franklin, who weighs around 200 lbs himself, found it difficult to get Housley off. Housley was awarded the tap out victory due to strikes at :45 seconds of round 1.
During the intermission, I had the luxury of speaking to the young, up and comer Maurice Walker. Walker, who is coming off a controversial No Contest at the last ICE show in March, discussed his view and what he thought of his fight with undefeated young gun Jon Murphy from Pennsylvania. He was looking forward to having his rematch with Murphy, which was sure to be a barn burner, but I was informed by Walker that the rematch most likely will never happen. Jon Murphy, at this time, seems to be putting his MMA dreams on hold, and is pursuing a professional boxing career instead. Walker wished him the best of luck, but was disappointed that they could not have their rematch. I, for one, was looking forward to the rematch, but wish Jon Murphy the best of luck in his boxing career, and I know that Maurice Walker will be finding himself on bigger and better cards as his young career takes off as well.
The eighth fight of the night pitted Chris Moore from Team Wolfpack in Muncie, IN against ICE veteran Ricky Hutchins from Dayton, Ohio. As the round began, Hutchins immediately went in for the guillotine choke, trying to finish Moore off the same way he finished off Nathan Fitch at the ICE 7 show, but Moore was having no part of being submitted early. Hutchins locked in the choke and wrapped his legs around the waist of Moore, trying to pull him down and gain leverage. Moore never gave in and fought off the choke and eventually pulled his head out. Once out, he began to rain down punches towards Hutchins who could not defend. After landing what seemed to be punch after punch without any defense, referee Franklin had no choice but to stop the fight at 1:08 of round 1. A bloody Hutchins was disappointed as he stepped out of the ring, but I think his girlfriend, or whoever she was, seemed to be even more angered standing and screaming in outrage.
ICE veteran Ron Killing Fields made his return to the ICE show, seemingly on a submission tear lately, taking on a very active MMA veteran Leo Sylvest from Integrated Fight Systems. Yes, this is the same Leo Sylvest that fought Dave Menne in March and Rich Franklin in April. Sylvest has been in the octagon with a lot of big names and had a slight experience advantage over Fields. Fields seemed very confident and relaxed before the show and hoped to add another victory on his road to bigger shows down the road. The fight started with Fields locking in an attempt at a guillotine choke, but Sylvest was able to escape. Now on the ground, Sylvest was able to ground and pound Fields, who was doing a good job of minimizing any damage and always looking for submission attempts. After attempting an armbar that was unsuccessful, Fields was able to lock in a modified triangle choke that Sylvest didnt see coming and was forced to tap at 2:46 of round 1. Fields pulled of another submission victory, for a man who is mainly known for his striking ability, it is a testament to Fields who is evolving and adding new weapons to his arsenal each and every time out.
The main event of the evening had rising MMA star Kerry The Meat Truck Schall getting his rematch with MMA veteran Chris Herring out of North Carolina. Schall, who is known for his unusual bad luck, was looking to rejuvenate his career, and was on winning tear of late. Knowing Schalls history of bad luck, it was no surprise that bad luck almost struck again this night. As Schall made his entrance to the octagon to William Hungs rendition of She Bangs blaring on the speakers above, Schall ran up the stairs and banged his toe heading into the octagon. It was later learned that the impact of the hit caused a small cut on Schalls toe, nothing major but considering Schalls past it was a scary moment to say the least. Luckily, the incident was only enough to cause a stumble into the ring, and nothing that would have caused him to pull out, like has happened in the past. Awaiting him inside was a determined Herring looking to pull out the upset victory.
Round 1 began with Schall getting the immediate takedown and landing in the side control of Herring. Schall than began to throw huge left hands that landed flush into the face and side of the head of Herring. With 270 lbs of brute force landing punches on him, Herring had no other option but to tap from strikes at :51 seconds of round 1. Schall had his rematch victory and celebrated by running around the outside of the octagon giving hi fives to the fans in attendance.
After the ICE show was over, I thought about a lot of things on my drive back home. This was probably the most exciting ICE show that I have been to. Without much publicity, the attendance that showed up to watch MMA action was near capacity. The ICE show provides new and young fighters the ability to display their talents, hoping to one day get their big break in the biggest show of them all, the UFC. Monte Cox and Kerry Schall have provided Cincinnati with another solid show with nothing but a bright future ahead. I, for one, cannot wait for the next ICE show, not only wanting to watch the sport I love most, but also watching dreams for young fighters come true.