Bantamweight champ Raufeon “Supa” Stots and welterweight belt-holder Yuri Villefort both scored lightning-quick finishes and retained their respective titles at Victory Fighting Championship’s VFC 59: Stots vs. Berdon on Saturday night.
A packed house at Baxter Arena in Omaha, Nebraska, and those watching live on UFC FIGHT PASS® saw both champs get their work accomplished inside the opening round. In the main event, birthday boy Stots (9-1) manhandled Arnold Berdon (6-2) on the mat and locked in a rear-naked choke to earn the tapout at 4:36 of the first.
“Everyone knows where I want to be … the UFC,” said Stots, who defeated Rob Emerson to claim the title in his appearance inside the VFC’s famed square cage.
The co-main event saw Villefort barely break a sweat in his first title defense against veteran Victor Moreno. Last time out in the very same cage and arena, Villefort (11-6) outgrappled then-champion Kassius Holdorf in a five-round marathon to take the belt. This time, Villefort slipped away from a wild-swinging Moreno (37-24) and locked onto his foe after the off-balance challenger slipped to canvas. Villefort squeezed down on a guillotine choke and notched the submission win only 29 seconds into the bout.
The VFC 59 card opened with hot prospect Austin “AK 47” Vanderford (4-0) scoring a second-round submission victory over Kenny Licea. After sustaining some damage from a well-placed knee strike from Licea, Vanderford got himself together and nearly finished the bout late in the opening round with a head-and-arm choke. The end did come after Vanderford earned the mount with Licea (4-5) surrendering his back and then tapping out to a rear-naked choke at 4:03 of the second.
A back-and-forth all-Nebraska bout followed between up-and-coming lightweights as Troy Nawrocki (3-0) capitalized from the outside, including a number of timely body kicks, to take a unanimous decision from his former amateur rival Tower Robinson (1-1) by scores of 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28.
Bryce Logan (8-2) continued his rise in VFC’s lightweight ranks as he picked up his fourth straight win by outlasting Josh Pfeifer (6-4). The Sioux Falls, South Dakota product got the nod from judges 29-28 on all three scorecards.
Scott Futrell notched the upset of the night in convincing fashion. A late replacement, Futrell (7-5) squared off against prospect Seth Bass and brutalized the fan favorite from Omaha at the end of the first round with a vicious barrage of elbow and punches from the top. Bass (4-2) survived but fared no better in the second as Futrell, who fights of out St. Louis, Missouri, connected with a blistering standing elbow to the right side of Bass’ head and dropped him to the canvas. The bout was brought to a halt by the referee at 17 seconds of the middle frame.
Another fan favorite fell victim to an opposing invader. Minnesota’s Dan Moret (13-3) made quick work of Midwest veteran Alonzo Martinez (41-19-1), moving from mount into a fight-finishing rear-naked choke only 1:39 into their bout.