Green River Community College - Auburn, Washington
by Mike Renouard
KOA Combat, headed by Jay & Lyrlene Javellana, presented their latest fight event "Ekolu", on June 2nd at Green River CC in Auburn WA with an entertaining evening of amateur action that included 15 bouts, including two title fights and a superbout.
In the main event, teen MMA phenom Nainoa Dung flew in from Hawaii to capture the KOA Combat Youth MMA Title with a first round TKO of Keenan Kennedy. The pair briefly exchanged on the feet before Kennedy shot for the takedown which Dung stuffed with ease, taking Kennedy's back, and finishing him with strikes at 1:29 of the first. Dung, at only 13 years old, is well-known in Hawaii and has been called the future of MMA. Time will tell of course, but it was evident from the short bout that Dung is already a very polished fighter and he certainly has the desire of a champion. Afterwards, Dung spoke to NWFS about the fight and what it means for him to capture the KOA Combat belt.
Team Evolution's Kamm Freudenstein and West Coast Fight Team's Marcus Mendoza engaged in a terrific five-round battle that certainly was the Fight of the Night. From the get-go, these two combatants were all over the cage both on the feet and the ground, throwing strikes and working for the finish. In later rounds, Freudenstein started taking over, getting top control and raining down strikes. Mendoza on his part put in work until the final bell, active in his defense and never giving in. After 15 minutes, one judges had it 49-46, and the other two 48-47, all for Freudenstein. Both fighters displayed well-rounded skillsets and obviously have put their time in at the gym, and what they learned from this war can only certainly help their game in future fights.
In a Superbout, Zach Conn and Charlando Peoples were matched up at 170 lbs. Peoples worked Conn against the cage and got the takedown in the first. Conn however was able to reverse and nearly finished Peoples on the ground with some hard strikes, but Peoples was saved by the bell. In the 2nd, they exchanged in the center, with Conn getting the upperhand, locking up Peoples in a Muay Thai clinch and working some knees in. He eventually took it to the mat where he again displayed some heavy hands, finishing Peoples by TKO at 1:29 of the 2nd.
Team Blackout's Jesse Chester and American Combat Academy fighter Gary Winslow met in a crowd pleasing fight at 155 lbs. After an initial clinch dance around the cage, the fight went to the ground with Chester going for the armbar before Winslow reversed and threw bombs. Chester got it to the feet and Winslow made him pay with some accurate punches against the cage. Chester retreated as Winslow chased him across the cage, the first round ending with both fighters throwing leather. In the 2nd, the fighters again engaged at a high pace, throwing everything they had at each other before Chester dropped Winslow with a straight left. Chester immediately jumped on Winslow and locked in an armbar, seemingly getting Winslow to tap and then releasing the submission. But Wait!! The ref didn't see the tap and the fight continued with Winslow now on top, raining down strikes & getting the TKO finish with the crowd screaming that he had tapped. Afterwards, Referee Steve Newport asked Winslow straight up if he had indeed tapped to the armbar and Winslow admitted he had, so the win was rightfully given to Chester.