Hawaiian challenger Louis “The Last Samurai” Smolka relied on a superior ground game to dethrone Filipino champion Ale Cali Saturday night and become the new Pacific X-Treme Combat (PXC) light flyweight champion in PXC 41 at the Ynares Sports Center in Pasig City.
Smolka, now unbeaten in five fights, almost suffered a knockout in the first round but was able to force Cali on the ground that earned him the advantage to hit powerful elbows.
Cali, 22, couldn’t use his speed after being trapped and Smolka pounced on him with a powerful flurry of punches until the referee stopped the fight with less than two minutes left in the second round.
“I feel very great to achieve something that I’ve thought about for so long,” said Smolka. “I plan on holding the belt until the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) calls.”
In the other fights, Korean Han Bin Park forced former PXC bantamweight champion Crisanto Pitpitunge into submission in the final round. The Filipino was ahead in the scorecards but Park sent the fight on the ground which favored him to set up the rear-naked choke.
Gina Iniong won her debut in the women’s side with a first-round technical knockout of Nathalie Heidel.
In all Filipino matches, Ernesto Montilla Jr. defeated Jinel Lausa and Harold Banario won over Joseph Mercado.
Bantamweights Johnny Pecyna and Shane Alvarez defeated Team Lakay’s Troy Bantiag with an arm triangle while Alvarez beat Kid Orais with the Americana keylock both in the first round.
The bout between featherweight Filipino-American Mark “Mugen” Striegl and Ev Ting was scrapped after Ting missed the weigh in cut by seven points.
The clash between Frank Camacho and Seung Hwan Bang was also dropped after both fighters failed to make the weight limit.
JOSEF T. RAMOS