Ten fighters in the Rites of Passage 15: Wrath of the Warriors needed no scorecards from the judges, as they last beat their respective foes in convincing fashion last Friday at the Royal Taga Hall of the Saipan World Resort.
In the opening kickboxing bouts, both fights were decided in the first round. Guam Muay Thai’s Alex Andrea defeated Team Makpo’s L.J. George, earning a TKO win at the 2:00 mark of the first round. The third man on the ring stopped the fight, as the hapless George was cornered and took all off Andrea’s punishing punches and kicks.
Josh Javellana, also of Guam Muay Thai, used his superior kickboxing skills, too, to get a victory via verbal submission over Pwang’s Pete “Project K” Keju. Javellana hit Keju on the knee in the closing seconds of the opening round and just before the bell sounded to start Round 2, Keju threw in the towel.
In the first MMA bout of the night between Zalaka’s Danny Cruz and Zeng Zung’s Pete “Te Beast” Cepeda, the latter employed a rear-naked choke on the former for a submission win at the 2:46 mark of the second round.
The next two MMA matches were also won via RNC with Trench Tech’s Vince Torres and Zalaka’s Jordan Manglona pulling the plug on Zeng Zung’s Regino “The Kid” Mundo and R.A.A.’s Ray Camacho. Mundo failed to be saved by the bell, as Torres pinned him down on the ground for the submission win with just one second left in the first round. Manglona used the same tactic on Camacho and got the victory earlier, as the fight was ended at the 1:51 of the opening round.
In the fourth MMA duel of the night, the debuting T.J. Sablan capitalized on his height advantage to prevail over Zalaka’s Allan Aguon. Aguon chased Sablan to the corner, but the latter was quick to react, locking his foe’s neck for the Guillotine choke and the former tapped out at the 2:42 mark of the first round.
Meanwhile, the fastest victory in ROP 15 belonged to Team Slice’s Walt Florencio, who needed only 31 seconds to finish off Francisco Sinounou and earn a victory via referee stoppage (flurry of kicks).
Completing the list of winners in last Friday’s events were three Trench Tech bets—A.J. “Mini Mouse” Aldan, Francisco “Pak Pak” Palacios, and Benedict Estoque.
Aldan used his quickness to gain top position on Garry “Dissa” Ray and pounded his foes with strikes on the body and the head before employing a rear-naked choke on the latter for the submission win at the 2:46 mark of the first round.
Palacios also won in the first round, as he caught the right leg of Team Madhouse’s Daniel Floor, slammed him on the floor, and showered him with string of strikes, forcing guest referee Frank “The Crank Camacho to stop the fight at the 1:23 mark of Round 1.
Estoque joined his fellow Trench Tech fighters on the winner’s list after a victory via arm-bar submission over R.A.A.’s Jake Ray in the 2:45 mark of the second round. Estoque and Ray grappled in the first round, which ended with the bout pretty even before the former got a hold of the latter’s right arm to take the win one round early.