The longest running, active mixed martial arts promotion in Pennsylvania, PA Cage Fight, holds PA Cage Fight 30 tonight from the Woodlands Resort in Wilkes-Barre, PA.
Moment of Silence
The main event pairs Aaron Kennedy up against Malek Mahmoud in a bantamweight bout.
The evening’s co-main event features Miller Brothers MMA’s, Jim Fitzpatrick who will be taking on Earnest Walls. Walls takes this fight on short notice.
Big Loss…. But in a Good Way
The big boys, Austin Birch and Mike Erb opened up the night. These two heavyweights began exchanging leather right away. Birch swarmed in for a take down and began to work the body of his opponent. When an opening presented itself, Erb worked his way out and began throwing knees to the body before taking Birch’s back and submitting him with a rear-naked choke in the first round. In the post fight interview Erb said that he previously weighed over 400 pounds. “I worked so hard. Five years ago I was 410 pounds, a smoking alcoholic. Here I am.”
Rivera’s Heavy Hands Help in Win
Lavdi “The Albanian Assassin” Shabani met Luis Rivera in the night’s second contest. The power in the hands of Rivera is remarkable. Shabani was forced to take the fight to the ground to avoid more punishment. The first frame ends with Shabani working for a submission but not quite completing it before the bell tolls. The second round starts the same as the first, Rivera landing brutal shots, bloodying Shabani in the process. Shabani, again forced to do something, presses Rivera up against the cage. Rivera reverses and works for a standing guillotine but Shabani escapes, takes the fight to the ground and works to full mount in the final ten seconds. Once again, Rivera opens up the final round with a huge uppercut and Shabani works to get to the cage. Not much is done from that position and the fight goes the distance. This one will go to the judges. Rivera wins a unanimous decision. After the win, Rivera announced that he is moving down to 155 pounds and called out Kyle Gillette who happened to be in the audience. The two men then faced off inside the PA Cage Fight cage.
Takedowns Take Over
The 18-year old Matthew Santos landed a big superman punch early in his fight with Joshua Horne. Horne survives, circles, lands a few jabs, only to receive a low blow in the process and the fight is temporarily halted by referee Bill Bookwalter. Horne has up to five minutes to recover but does not choose to use the time allotted for him. The action resumes and not even two seconds later the first round comes to a close. The two men start exchanging hands in the second frame before Santos shoots in with a beautiful double leg takedown. Santos maintain top control to score points and should win the round on the judges’ scoredcards. In the final round the fight once again goes to the ground by a takedown from Santos. Horne begins to throw elbows to the body. The fighters work their way to the feet and Santos gets another takedown to close the round and the fight. Santos wins unanimously.
Purple Belt Puts Jiu-Jitsu on Display
Tyler Mooney grabbed hold of the neck of Anthony Hewitt and just would not let go, tossing him around the cage with submission to submission, never ceasing to relieve the pressure on his opponent’s head. When the D’arce and the guillotine didn’t work, Mooney transitioned to a triangle and ended the fight in the first round. Mooney, a purple belt in BJJ made the fight look easy.
Jason Manning and Austin Swoyer met for the PA Cage Fight amateur heavyweight championship. Manning stood over Swoyer and landed down punches to the mid-section. Swoyer opened the second frame with a big hook but Manning manages to the back control when the fight goes to the ground. He sinks his hooks in and submits Swoyer with a rear-naked choke to win the title.
Fight of the Night
Joe Byers took on Anthony Caschera in the final fight before the evening’s intermission. Caschera who was making his MMA debut, landed a big right hand to drop Byers in the opening seconds of the fight. From there Caschera got flashy with a wheel kick and superman punch. His movement was very fast paced but it didn’t look like he was going to be slowed down. That’s when Byers went in for a takedown and ended the first round on the canvas. The two combatants start throwing bombs to open up the second round and again Caschera makes Byers stumble. Now with his back against the cage Caschera throws wildly without much connection. The fists start flying to close out the second round. This fight is crazy. The crowd starts chanting “Anthony” in the third and final round. These guys are swinging for the fences. With 10-seconds left in the fight Byers gets a takedown, but will it be enough?
Tizzy Does it Again
Marcus Crawford and Joe Tizzano competed in the first fight following the intermission. Tizzano of Miller Brothers MMA was defending his PA Cage Fight amateur featherweight title. The two fighters stalked each other down, carefully picking and choosing their shots in the opening round. The entire three-minutes were contested on the feet, never going to the ground. An accidental groin shot to Crawford temporarily suspended the action. The thud from Tizzano’s foot colliding with Crawford’s cup echoed throughout the Woodlands Inn ballroom. When the action started back up Tizzano landed a big shot stumbling Crawford. Tizzano chased down his opponent and the round came to a close, but should be scored in favor of the champion. Tizzano bleeding a bit in the third and final round. Crawford starting to find a home for his jabs. Then…. just like that Tizzano connects and puts Crawford to sleep.
Joel Hernandez and Kyle Reed put on a highly entertaining rock ’em sock ’em back and forth brawl. Three rounds of back and forth non-stop action. Reed earns the nod on the judges’ scorecards.
Jim Fitzpatrick of Miller Brothers MMA made his pro MMA debut tonight against Earnest Walls. After an early superman attempt from Walls, Fitzpatrick works in a push kick and then ties up with his opponent to take the fight to the ground. Fitzpatrick, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt worked several submission attempts before taking the back and landing vicious ground and pound. Fitz finishes the fight with strikes in the first round as referee Bill Bookwalter calls an end to the fight.
Mahmoud’s Main Event
The main event between Aaron Kennedy and Malek Mahmoud gets a huge pop as both fighters walk to the cage. Once the action starts for this one, the crowd at the Woodlands is going absolutely bananas and rightfully so. These two fighters put on a war in the opening five minutes to set the pace for the rest of the fight. Kennedy worked a variety of submissions from the bottom but Mahmoud was relentless in maintaining a dominant top control. Every time Kennedy seemed to fade from exhaustion he would come back with another submission attempt. This fight is going to a third and final round. Mahmoud landed a big shot while Kennedy went in for a takedown and it is Mahmoud who lands on top. The fight rolls on and it seems that no matter what Kennedy does, Mahmoud is just one step ahead. This is a brawl. Mahmoud scoops Kennedy up and slams him down and the crowd erupts. The fight ends at the 15-minute mark and will go to the judges for a decision. Mahmoud wins unanimously.
Complete PA Cage Fight 30 results below:
Malek Mahmoud defeated Aaron Kennedy via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)
Co Main Event
Jim Fitzpatrick defeated Earnest Walls via TKO – Round 1, 3:38
Main Card Bouts
Kyle Reed defeated Joel Hernandez via unanimous decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28)
Joe Tizzano defeated Marcus Crawford via knockout – Round 3, 1:14 for featherweight championship
Anthony Caschera defeated Joe Byers via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Jason Manning defeated Austin Swoyer via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 2, 1:33 for heavyweight championship
Tyler Mooney defeated Anthony Hewitt via submission (triangle choke) 1:54
Matthew Santos vs. Joshua Horne via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27)
Luis Rivera defeated Lavdi Shabani via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Mike Erb defeated Austin Birch via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 1:57