Ring of Combat 69 took place last night in Atlantic City, NJ. ROC has continued to be the premier regional mixed martial arts promotion in the United States with over 130 fighters who have gone on to display their skills in the UFC. Louis Neglia and Dead Serious Promotions consistently pack fight cards with talent and ROC 69 was no different. The event was broadcast live on UFC Fight Pass.
In the main event, Philadelphia’s Joe “Bodybagz” Pyfer moved to 6-0 and captured the ROC National Middleweight Championship with a referee stoppage at 1:07 of the first round via TKO due to strikes. Pyfer has not even been tested in his 6 fights and leaves a trail of destruction in his wake. The Team Balance product has imposed his will on every opponent thus far with just sheer dominance and strength. He has only gone the distance once and it was a lopsided victory. His other 5 wins have been finishes that leave the crowd standing and chanting “Bodybagz, Bodybagz, Bodybagz.” It should be interesting to see who is next for Joe, who has a tremendous support system with his mentor, Bellator vet Sam Oropeza, and the Animal, Ricardo Migliarese. In his post-fight interview he mentioned the UFC, but he probably needs several more victories to get that call.
In the co-main event that was deemed a super-fight at 145 lbs, Matt Probin (4-0) brought over 40 kickboxing and Muay-Thai fights worth of experience with him to battle the Dante Rivera trained Tim “the Jaguar” Dooling. Dooling entered the cage at 8-5 but has faced the best talent in the area including some who have gone on to fight at Bellator and the UFC. Dooling went strike for strike with Probin and even seemed to get the better of it for much of the fight. When he did decide to take the fight to the ground, it was a mismatch and the Jaguar dominated. In the third round, Tim worked his takedown then transitioned to the bodylock and the back then to the rear naked choke to tap out the previously unbeaten Probin. Dooling’s best performance of his career in my opinion. I’d like to see him get a title shot in his next fight.
My choice for fight of the night would be Daniel Hughes vs Dylan “the Quiet Man” Mantello. Mantello won a unanimous decision 30-27 29-28 29-28. This fight was a slugfest for most of the three rounds. Hughes showed an unbelievable chin as Mantello threw some nasty combinations. Hughes did some damage of his own as Mantello also showed huge heart. Mantello entered his pro debut after a 6-0 amateur career vs the 2-0 Hughes. The Quiet Man is definitely someone that I have my eye on and will be very curious to see his next move. It’s only been one fight, but he has that “it” factor and looks like he is going to have a very nice run into the pro ranks.
Knockout of the night must go to Kealii Kanekoa. Kanekoa looked like he was going to be finished early as Manny Flores rocked him with some vicious strikes followed up by several knees right after the opening bell. Kanekoa stood tall and squarely landed a spinning back elbow followed up by a hook that knocked out Flores at 38 seconds of the first round. Definitely a highlight reel KO.
Submission of the night I would give to Andrew Johnson. Johnson was dominated by the wrestling of Vilson Ndregjoni for the first 2 rounds. In the 3rd, Johnson nicely anticipated the shot with a sidestep and hopped onto the back and immediately secured the rear naked choke to get the tapout at 46 seconds of round 3. He needed a finish and he got it.
Dante Rivera BJJ had a very successful night going 4-0 as Efren Escareno, Dooling, Andrew “Ice Cold” Salas and Jimmy Baby Face” Lawson each left with their hands raised. Full results below
135 lbs – Mateo Maldonado (Mangusto MMA) vs Efren Escareno (Lion Heart MMA)
Efren Escareno winner via unanimous decision 30 -27 30-27 30-27
170 lbs – Kealii Kanekoa (Legacy MMA) vs Manny Flores (Serra-Longo)
Winner via TKO R1 Kealii Kanekoa 38 seconds
145 lbs – Vilson Ndregjoni (Team Vision) vs Andrew Johnson (Dave Strassers Freestyle Academy)
Winner via submission RNC Andrew Johnson 46 seconds of round 3
HWT – Jimmy Lawson (American Kickboxing Academy) vs Edwin Smart (Serra-Longo)
Winner vis referee stoppage TKO due to strikes R2 3:07 Jimmy “Baby Face” Lawson
170 lbs – Troy Green (Bellmore Kickboxing) vs Lenny Rufati (Roufusport)
30-27 29-28 29-28 winner via unanimous decision Troy Green
145 lbs – Anthony Facchini ((Inferno) vs Andrew Salas (Dante Rivera BJJ)
29-28 29-28 29-28 Andrew” Ice Cold” Salas winner via unanimous decision
Co-main event – 145 lbs – Matt Probin (Team Recon) vs Tim Dooling (Dante Rivera BJJ)
Winner via submission RNC R3 2:48 Tim “the Jaguar” Dooling
Main Event – 185 lb ROC Middleweight Championship – Matthew Foster (MCA Midwest Combat Academy) vs Joe Pyfer (Team Balance)
Winner via TKO due to strikes Round 1:07 and new ROC National middleweight champion Joe “Bodybagz” Pyfer
Commentator for Art of War Cagefighting. More than 10 years experience in the PA/NJ regional MMA circuit. Commentator/post fight interviews. Television/media/event production.
The story of the fighter is what Bob loves about the sport. From the lowest level, to the highest, he only cares about the two warriors who do battle once the cage doors close. Everything else is secondary. Without their blood, sweat, and tears, he would not be here enjoying every minute.