Lewiston, Maine (February 4, 2018) – Two years of traveling the world in pursuit of mixed martial arts glory had not even a shred of negative impact on Bruce “Pretty Boy” Boyington’s mystique in the New England Fights cage.
Battered, bloodied Taylor Trahan somehow made it to the end of the second round at Androscoggin Bank Colisee, but a relentless Boyington punctuated a dominant performance with a rear naked choke at 1:08 of the third in the 150-pound main event at “NEF 32: Super Saturday.”
Boyington (15-11) had fought in such diverse locales as New York City and Moscow since his most recent NEF appearance. He extended his winning streak in the promotion to four fights at the expense of Trahan (7-9).
Four other professional bouts and 10 amateur affairs highlighted the busy evening.
C.J. Ewer’s bid to become the first simultaneous NEF champion in two different divisions fell short against Kemran Lachinov.
Lachinov (6-2), a Bellator veteran based out of Ludlow, Massachusetts, captured the vacant welterweight crown with a tapout to a kneebar at 3:01 of the first round.
Ewer was undefeated in three previous pro fights, including a submission victory over Mike Hansen for the middleweight strap six months ago.
Hansen also absorbed a choke-out loss on this card. Coming off a week of controversy about their agreed-upon catch weight, Jesse “The Viking” Erickson showed that his apparent size disadvantage was no issue.
After dominating the early exchanges, Erickson (10-7) applied a guillotine. With Hansen (5-9) appearing unresponsive, the referee stepped in and stopped the contest at 2:41 of the opening round.
Aaron Lacey rebounded from the first loss of his career, thoroughly dominating veteran Josh Parker in a 145-pound tangle. Lacey (5-1) controlled the lone round of the bout, dropping Parker (6-10) with a knee to the head. He maintained control with a vicious assault to the body, then sent Parker to dreamland via rear naked choke at 4:30.
Persistence paid off for independent mainstay Zenon Herrera, who picked up his first professional victory in his seventh try. Both Herrera and opponent Nate Charles have an extensive boxing background, but it was Herrera’s domination on the ground that paved the path to an unanimous decision.
In the headline amateur event, Ryan Burgess scored a narrow victory over Nate Boucher in a grueling, ground-and-pound flyweight fracas.
The bout between former Mountain Valley High School wrestling teammates was billed as a grudge match, fueled by a war of words on social media. Not surprisingly it ended in a lengthy embrace after the bell, with both men lying spent in the center of the cage.
There was little to choose between the Rumford rivals. Burgess (3-2) pushed the attack in rounds two and three and may have gained the final 29-28 edge on two scorecards with a few well-placed knees to the midsection. Boucher (2-2) swept all three rounds in the other judge’s estimation.
With the victory, Burgess snapped a two-fight losing skid and earned a June title fight against Justin Witham. Burgess initially won the title back in 2015.
Kam Arnold (2-0) left an indelible impression on both the crowd and opponent Kyle Kenney in his first-round victory. After patiently finding a seam, Arnold slammed Kenney to the canvas early in the bout and gained the TKO with a barrage of strikes at the two-minute mark.
Former amateur light heavyweight champion Ryan Glover (4-2) made a triumphant return in his first appearance since losing the belt exactly one year ago. Glover ended a slugfest with newcomer Joe Berube by verbal submission to strikes in the opening seconds of the third round.
Mohammad Al-Kinani ran his amateur record to 3-0 with a first-round TKO of Isaac Therrien. It was Al-Kinani’s stand-up acumen against Therrien’s wrestling background, and Therrien gained the early advantage with three takedowns. He was unable to keep the action on the deck, however, and Al-Kinani’s fistic prowess proved too tough to overcome.
Likewise, Shawn Lunghi kept his record perfect through three fights with a first-round rear naked choke over previously unbeaten Devin Corson. The convincing, 68-second victory earned Lunghi an April shot at the amateur featherweight title against Taylor Costantino at NEF 33 in Portland.
Former University of Maine football standout Carlton Charles delivered the quickest knockout of the evening. Charles rebounded from his initial loss in November with a 12-second stoppage of Delmarkis Edwards, who was making his debut at 175 pounds.
Stacy Lupo picked up his first win in the cage over David Hart. Lupo used knees and kicks to gain the advantage before gaining the TKO via strikes at 1:10 of the opening round of the 155-pound scrap.
In a wildly entertaining women’s bout to christen the card, B.J. Garceau made a successful amateur debut with a split decision over Sarah Ziehm. All three judges offered a 29-28 verdict, but a strong start and authoritative finish gave Garceau the edge. Garceau dedicated her debut to awareness of diabetes, a disease she battles outside the cage.
Two other women’s bouts went the distance. Catie Denning won her debut by unanimous decision over Chelsea Elizabeth, while Amanda Gallo made her trip from Florida pay off with a clean sweep of the cards against 2017 NEF rookie of the year Jayda Bailey.
NEF returns to Portland, Maine, at Aura on Saturday, April 14. To purchase tickets for “NEF 33: Riptide,” go to www.auramaine.com and use pre-sale code “NEF.”
About New England Fights
New England Fights (“NEF”) is a fight events promotions company. NEF’s mission is to create the highest quality events for fighters and fans alike. NEF’s executive team has extensive experience in combat sports management, events production, media relations, marketing, legal and advertising.