MMA fans who want to get up close and personal with the action can do so this Saturday, Sept. 15 at Texas Rage in the Cage 15 at the Beaumont Civic Center at 7 p.m. Tickets are available at all Ticketmaster locations for $40, $30, $25. You can purchase ticket at the Civic Center Box Office or online by clicking HERE.
Ten amateur cage fights are scheduled and more than half will see local boys in action including the main event, which pits Port Arthur native Joel “The Demon” Scott (4-1) vs. David Salazar (1-1) for the vacant featherweight (145 pound) title. Salazar, of Mission, is a last minute replacement for the injured Johnny Rodriguez.
Ricardo Palacios won the TRCAA featherweight title at Rage in the Cage 13 on March 2 at the Beaumont Civic Center by stopping Scott in the third round, which was Scott’s first loss. Since, Palacios has turned pro and thus the title has become vacated.
Scott is coming into the fight with momentum as he won a featherweight title at Elite Amateur Combat 2 by defeating Brian Sullivan Jr. via TKO (strikes) in the first round in April at the Houston event.
Salazar, of Mission and trains at South Texas MMA, comes to Beaumont after a loss at TRCAA 14 as he tapped in the first to a triangle choke by Hilario Compean.
Also on the card is Will Spidle (3-1) of Beaumont vs. Aaron Gomez (2-2). “Will is coming off his first loss, but we got a lot of positives out of that loss,” said American Top Team-Beaumont trainer Mike Berryhill. “Will has put on muscle, gotten stronger and increased his cardio.”
Spidle’s loss was at TRCAA 13 in Beaumont in March to Joey Montiel. Gomez, from Corpus Christi, trains at Weapons at Hand. The fight will be at 125 (flyweight).
Also fighting from ATT-Beaumont will be Jeffrey Stockdale (0-0) vs. Rene Aguirre (0-0) and Martin Walker (2-6) vs. Jerry Stuart.
Stockdale, a graduate of West Brook, will step into the cage for the first time. “Jeffrey is a Marine,” said Berryhill. “He comes in everyday by showing up early and leaving late. He has a good wrestling background, so we have been working his standup and Jiu Jitsu. He has been through a lot in his life and he wants to make a positive statement.”
Stockdale’s opponent, Aguirre, also makes his cage debut. He schools at Gracie Barra in McAllen and trains with current South Texas Fighting Championship’s middleweight title-holder, Frank Trevino. The fight will be at 145 (featherweight).
Walker will once again fight a new opponent on short notice. His last few scheduled fights were replacement fighters due to his original opponent being injured or they’ve failed to make weight.
“Martin is a pure fighter,” added Berryhill. “He’s done several grappling tournaments to improve different aspects of the fight game. He’s super competitive, has a great mentality and strives to be better.”
Stuart (1-0), Walker’s opponent, comes from Harlingen and the fight will be at 135 (bantamweight).
Jason Ebarb’s Texas Punishment Crew will also be well represented on the card.
Jake Loiacano (1-0) of Hamshire plans to remain undefeated when he steps into the cage against Diego Gutierrez (1-0) of Mission at 185 pounds (middleweight)
Loiacano will make his first appearance in nearly two years as he defeated Zachary Scalf via rear-naked choke in the 2nd round at TRCAA in 2010.
Former Little Cypress-Mauriceville graduate Jonathan Wheeler (2-1) will take on Joel Pena (1-1) of McAllen at 135 (bantamweight).
Like his teammate Loiacano, Wheeler is coming off a long layoff as he last fought on Feb. 20, 2010 and defeated Kevin Hill via rear-naked choked in the 1st. Pena comes to Beaumont off a submission (triangle choke) win in May at TRCAA 14 against Israel Martinez.
Also on the card is “Bad” Chad Coggins of Buna. Coggins, (2-5) who trains at Gladiator Pit, will take on newcomer Juan Gonzales (0-0) of McAllen.
Tentative Rage in the Cage 15 fight card
Main Event: Joel Scott (4-1) vs. David Salazar (1-1) – TRCAA featherweight title
Will Spidle (3-1) vs. Aaron Gomez (2-2), 125
Jake Loiacano (1-0) vs. Diego Gutierrez (1-0), 185
Chad Coggins (2-5) vs. Juan Gonzales (0-0), 170
Jeffrey Stockdale (0-0) vs. Rene Aguirre (0-0), 145
Marcus Daily (0-0) vs. Mark Thompson (0-0), 175
Jonathan Wheeler (2-1) vs. Joel Pena (1-1), 135
Martin Walker (2-7) vs. Jerry Stuart (1-0), 135
Michael Saucedo (1-0) vs. Mark Sanchez (0-0), 135
Agustin Pena (0-1) vs. Marcus Huerta (1-0), 135