Prior Lake, Minnesota – Legacy Fighting Alliance almost always brings the finishes, but LFA 61 proved an exception to the rule with five unanimous decisions in five contests broadcast on AXS TV. There was still plenty of solid action for fight fans to enjoy, including an entertaining battle between Nate Jennerman & Ken Beverly and a dominant title defense by LFA Middleweight Champion Brendan Allen. Read on for recaps of all the action from LFA 61!
LFA 61 Results
- Brendan Allen def. Moses Murrietta by unanimous decision for the LFA Middleweight Championship
- Brandon Jenkins vs. Mike Plazola canceled on fight night
- Nate Jennerman def. Ken Beverly by majority decision
- Sid Bice def. Lloyd McKinney by unanimous decision
- Jake Childers def. Josh Marsh by unanimous decision
- Nick Ammerman def Dionisio Ramirez by unanimous decision
Brendan Allen dec. Moses Murrietta
LFA Middleweight Championship
After ten finishes in his first ten pro wins, LFA middleweight champ Brendan Allen (11-3, #158 World) proved his ability to go 25 minutes in a a brutally one-sided 25 minute beatdown of California kickboxer Moses Murrietta (8-2, #171 World) in the LFA 61 main event. Allen stunned his flatfooted challenger in the opening seconds before slamming the California kickboxer to the ground. That’s where Allen set to work with smothering grappling, advancing to side control before finishing round 1 holding onto a guillotine try. Allen maintained the intensity with a rush of punches followed by a takedown 20 seconds into round 2. The kickboxer Murrietta showed no hip movement as Allen advanced to mount with over four minutes to work. He did do a good job of holding Allen close and avoiding fight-ending damage despite being on the bottom for the entire frame.
After ten minutes on his back, Murrietta bounced off his stool ready to throw hands to start round 3 but ate an uppercut from Allen. With the action back against the cage, Allen resumed grappling dominance by squishing Murrietta against the mat. Rounds 4 and 5 were rinse-and-repeat, as Allen painted the canvas red with Murreitta’s blood but never came particularly close to using his position to get a finish.
Finish or no, this was pure dominance from LFA champ Brendan Allen against a challenger who simply couldn’t cope with his wrestling; the 50-43, 50-43, 50-42 scorecards reflect exactly how close this fight was. Could a Contender Series or UFC opportunity be on the horizon for the 23-year-old Roufusport standout?
— Jonnyboy (@JBNeverDies) February 23, 2019
Brandon Jenkins vs. Mike Plazola cancelled
Mystic Lake Casino security guard Brandon Jenkins (12-6, #330 World) missed out on a hometown co-main event spot after Mike Plazola (16-10) was pulled from the fight after the event started. According to the AXS Fights crew, Plazola experienced dizziness backstage and was unable to compete. Jenkins was disappointed yet all class as he acknowledged that fighter safety is #1 and wished Plazola a speedy recovery.
Nate Jennerman dec. Ken Beverly
In his first major opportunity, Kentucky regional champ Ken Beverly (8-4, #369 World) was game to trade as he cracked Roufusport’s Nate Jennerman (13-4, #100 World) with a handful of shots in the opening minute. Beverly’s attention to offense came at the expense of defense, and Jennerman made him pay with a crushing right hook about a minute in. With his foe staggered, Jennerman toward an arm-in guillotine that Beverly fought admirably. When that didn’t work, Jennerman stayed persistent but couldn’t finish a D’Arce choke! From there Jennerman transitioned to a leglock but ended up pinned below Beverly in half-guard. The underdog lost control after 30 seconds but re-established position with a nice mat return. Beverly ended this action-jammed first round in back control against the overwhelming betting favorite Jennerman.
The chaos continued in round 2, with Jennerman scoring a quick takedown but ending up on bottom when he tried to rush to back mount. Back in the clinch, Beverly received a one point deduction for smashing Jennerman with a clearly-illegal elbow to the back of the head two minutes in. When action resumed, the Kentuckian responded to the relatively harsh penalty by swinging for the fences. That gave Jennerman a chance to reinitiate the grappling and hook for an armbar. In the end that proved to be another opportunity for Beverly to show off his stellar sub defense and resume top control. Unfortunately Beverly landed another punch directly to the back of the head, earning a crippling additional two point deduction.
Clearly needing a finish to win, Beverly came out blazing in the third round with a takedown followed by a flurry of uppercuts while pinning Jennerman to the cage. Jennerman’s effort at reversal left him pinned under North-South position. Beverly worked to rear wrestling ride, side control, and mount but never managed to seriously crack Jennerman’s defenses despite several minutes of positional dominance.
In the end the point deductions turned a would-be 30-27, 29-28, 29-28 unanimous decision for Beverly into a 28-26, 28-26, 27-27 majority decision for Jennerman. Let’s call it a win-win: Jennerman has to be happy to go to 5-2 in LFA despite absorbing blatantly illegal strikes that left a knot on the back of his head, while the 21-year-old Beverly looked like an unpolished diamond in his first opportunity under the bright lights of broadcast TV.
Sid Bice dec. Lloyd McKinney
This fascinating styles clash at flyweight saw lightning-quick Factory X rep Sid Bice (9-2, #115 World) use footwork and angles to dart inside the range of lanky adversary Lloyd McKinney (13-6, #125 World). Colorado’s Bice was successful with his early in-and-out offense, bloodying McKinney in round 1. To the Texan’s credit he got Bice’s timing down and scored some good straight shots of his own in the second half of the round. After showing off his striking skills, “Sid Vicious” switched gears and rode out the end of round 1 on top following a polished double-leg.
Bice worked back to top position after cracking McKinney with a left early in round 2 – “like a hummingbird with a sledgehammer,” per Pat Miletich. The accomplished wrestler showed his pedigree by pinning McKinney until a referee standup with 1 minute to go. Bice immediately rendered that official’s decision moot by landing a salvo of fists before lifting and slamming McKinney to the mat for the rest of the round.
Down 20-18, former Wisconsin-Lacrosse wrestler McKinney amped up his intensity and scored a takedown of his own after Bice rolled his ankle early in the third. McKinney, who owns 5 of 8 wins by submission, maneuvered to back control and threatened with an RNC as Bice tried to wiggle free. It wasn’t enough to obtain the submission or the decision, as McKinney saw his four fight winning streak vanish despite the strong push. Meanwhile Sid Bice toughed out the injury to advance to 3-1 in LFA and cement his place as one of the top US flyweights on the cusp of a big league promotion.
Jake Childers dec. Josh Marsh
Billed as “The Working Man”, Illinois’ Jake Childers (6-0) used a suitably workmanlike performance to neutralize superior athlete Josh Marsh (5-2, #310 World) in this 15 minute featherweight grinder. Childers scored occasional takedowns but spent much of his time pinning Roufusport’s Marsh against the cage. When he could get distance, Marsh issued periodic offense via knees and elbows but couldn’t get enough going to sway the judges in his favor. Good enough work for Childers to score a unanimous decision win in his LFA debut, though UFC Hall of Famer Pat Miletich believed that Marsh did enough to earn the nod based on damage incurred. Hopefully Marsh uses this defeat as a learning opportunity and comes out more aggressive in future contests.
Nick Ammerman dec. Dionisio Ramirez
Coming off a five year layoff, Dionisio Ramirez (7-5) showed signs of ring rust as Nick Ammerman (5-1) caught him with a pair of clean shots in the opening two minutes. Once Ramirez landed his first good punch, the fight really got going with both men slinging leather in the second half of round 1. By the end of the frame Ramirez was clicking on all cylinders, cracking Ammerman with snappy crosses to usher in the round 1 bell.
Former collegiate wrestler Ammerman switched gears in round 2 and put his man on the mat for a brief period. When Ramirez proved tough to control, Ammerman let him up and returned to kickboxing. The exchanges proved well-matched, neither man showing signs of serious damage heading to the second round break. The close kickboxing contest continued throughout round 3, with the 37-year-old Ammerman making progress with leg kicks and occasional solid punches. This one was open to judging interpretation, though the Minnesota officials scored it a blowout in favor of Nick Ammerman by straight 30-27 cards.
DC Howard is a US & global MMA aficionado and curator of the weekly World MMA Geek Guide. DC enjoys long walks uphill in both directions, watching facepunching, his cats, and watching facepunching with his cats.