"Black Eye Promotions" had their first event on Friday night in Fletcher, North Carolina (near Asheville). This pro/am card featured some of the top young talent in the Carolinas. The arena was packed and the fans there got a chance to talk with former light heavyweight world champion Rashad Evans. When you put together a fight card, you're never quite sure how the fights are going to turn out, but "Black Eye" hit a homerun with this show. The Asheville, NC area is producing its share of young MMA talent and for many of the fighters on this card, Friday night offered a chance to finally fight in front of their hometown fans. "Black Eye" will have their second event in Asheville on December 11th, headlined by the pro debut of Adam Dehart (MMA For Real's # 1 ranked amateur middleweight). Be sure and check that card out live. The results are after the jump:
- - In a 170 pound amateur title fight, two young undefeated fighters took the stage. Asheville, NC-based fighter Vincent Alberico (4-0) had the entire arena in a frenzy with a 19 second stoppage over Myrtle Beach, SC fighter Wes Evans (4-1). Alberico closed the distance, landed a nice combination which shook Evans, and showed killer instinct by following up with a barrage of punches that caused referee Dale Frye to step in and call a halt to the fight. Folks, Vincent Alberico is a guy to watch out for. I've seen him twice now in person and he really appears to be a guy with the potential to be a winning pro fighter.
- - The first pro bout of the evening featured touted bantamweight amateur Matt "Spiderman" Tran making his pro debut against fellow debuting pro Shane Tyler. Easley, South Carolina's Tran (1-0) was able to use his movement, kicks to the body and effective elbows and punches to get the better of Tyler standing. To his credit, Shane Tyler (0-1) showed a lot of heart and resiliency. He kept battling and gave Matt some quality rounds. In the end, it was a successful debut for Tran and a nice way to begin his pro MMA campaign.
- - In one of the most anticipated fights of the night, two talented 155 pound pros took the stage. Although the fight didn't last long, it was full of some dramatic moments. Cincinnati, OH fighter Dustin Center, a former NAIA wrestling All-American took on Asheville, NC fighter Jacob "The Brick" Allman, himself a former collegiate wrestler. The fighters started out circling each other with Allman throwing a few kick attempts. Soon after, Center pressed forward and was able to land an extremely hard straight right hand to the head of Allman. Jacob was rocked but had the presence of mind to clinch and recover. A moment later the fight was taken to the mat and Allman secured a fight-ending guillotine choke for the victory. Center (1-1) is a talented young fighter and this win was an impressive one for Allman (3-0). Jacob had the opportunity to both fight through some adversity and still get a first round submission victory. It was a crowd-pleasing victory and a nice accomplishment for Allman.
- - Many of the fans in attendance knew that the 135 pound pro bout between Asheville, NC fighter Preston "The Expert" Marks (MMA For Real's # 2 ranked pro bantamweight in the Carolinas)and South Carolina fighter Chris Cain would be a matchup between two really talented ground fighters. What this ended up being was a statement victory for Marks. Cain showed a lot of heart, both by taking a fight against a more experienced fighter on the road and by fighting valiantly. Ultimately, Marks was more active on the ground, efficiently controlling his opponent and going for numerous chokes and other submission attempts. The pressure that Marks puts on his opponents is impressive to watch. He is always looking for the finish and sets a pace that is extremely difficult for opponents to match. All in all, it was a very impressive win for Marks (5-3). Although there was, reportedly, some trash talking between the two before the fight, I'm sure that both fighters walked away respecting the abilities of the other. Watch out for Cain (1-1) in the future because he has some real talent. And Preston Marks is an extremely talented fighter that is a threat to beat anyone at 135 pounds.
- - In the night's main event, hometown fighter Johnny "Buck Nasty" Buck (9-7) scored a very impressive third round stoppage victory over South Carolina's Frank Wazkut (2-1). Wazkut showed some real heart in this one but Buck's wrestling and ground and pound were devastating in this one. Buck, a standout wrestler in high school that went on to wrestle at The Citadel, scored with numerous impressive takedowns and slams throughout the contest and his conditioning seemed to be incredible. Buck recently dropped down to the welterweight class (though this fight was at a catch-weight of 175) and he looked very impressive. I'm not sure that there is a fighter in the Carolinas that has improved more over the past year that Johnny Buck. Not only did he score an impressive win but he also offered up a high-impact, exciting match for the fans in attendance, capping off a great night of fights.