It was a brilliant night for the regional MMA scene as Gulf Coast Mixed Martial Arts presented Brawlroom Beatdown III, on Saturday, March 16, from the packed Biloxi Community Center. The fight card was stacked with nine fights, two title defenses and an absolute monster of a main event in Lance Thompson vs. former Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series contestant Tyler Hill.
The night featured five first-round finishes and displayed top-notch grappling and knockout performances. Follow along as I recap all of the action from a phenomenal night of combat sports presented by one of the most promising fight promotions on the Gulf Coast.
Darius Scott vs. RJ Parnell
The Brawlroom Beatdown began with a three-round bout between Darius Scott and RJ Parnell. From the first moments of the fight, Parnell came out on a mission, applying constant forward pressure. Parnell shot in for an early single leg takedown, and upon securing it, found himself in the high guard of Scott.
From top position, Parnell looked to isolate an arm. However, Scott attempted an escape, shooting his hips up, and he advanced to turtle position. Parnell applied exhausting top pressure and the round ended with him on top. I scored it 10/9 Parnell.
Immediately as the second round began, Parnell shot in for another takedown. Again, he secured it and ended up in Scott’s guard. From the top, Parnell eventually settled in and managed to deliver some effective ground and pound. Later in the round, Scott had the opportunity to generate some offense as he attempted a guillotine choke, however Parnell slipped out and again ended the round on top. I gave Parnell the round 10/9, and I had it 20/18 going into the third.
Trying to continue his previous success, Parnell began the third round with another takedown attempt. However, this time Darius Scott was ready and he earned his first takedown defense of the fight. But, Parnell was persistent with his pressure, and eventually changed to a single leg to secure the takedown. Parnell found himself this time in Scott’s half guard, and although he couldn’t deliver much damage from the top, he did maintain the position and he did enough to win the round. I had it 30/27 Parnell, and all three judges agreed.
Victor: RJ Parnell, unanimous decision
Joshua Crumpton vs. Dejuan Robinson
In the second fight of the night, we had Joshua Crumpton vs. Dejuan Robinson. Robinson came out in this one with a sense of urgency and opened up with a huge flurry of punches on Crumpton. Crumpton, trying to slow down Robinson’s pace, shot in for a takedown.
However, Robinson was stronger in the scramble, gaining dominant position and finding himself on top and in mount. Crumpton attempted to sweep using his legs, however this left him vulnerable and Robinson quickly shifted his hips and transitioned to an armbar, getting the tap at 1:32 of the very first round.
Victor: Dejuan Robinson, 1st-round submission, armbar
Joshua Baker vs. Clifford VanAlst
Joshua Baker vs. Clifford VanAlst was another quick and exciting match with a first-round finish VanAlst found his range early and rocked Baker with a punch that sent Baker to the canvas. VanAlst pursued and found himself in Baker’s guard.
From the top, VanAlst managed only minimal ground and pound before Baker’s quick hips adjusted, and he threw up a leg over VanAlst’s arm, putting VanAlst in serious jeopardy of a triangle choke. VanAlst tried to break himself free by lifting Baker and slamming him into the mat, however Baker’s legs stayed strong and he locked up the first-round submission.
Victor: Joshua Baker, 1st-round submission, triangle choke
George Green vs. Joe Eubanks
In the fourth fight of the night, we had George Green take on Joe Eubanks. Unfortunately, this one would not last long. Green came out ready to go, and after a couple of brief exchanges, locked up with Eubanks. Green delivered several punishing knees, then shifting his hands, he lifted and slammed Eubanks to the canvas. Eubanks grimaced as he landed and tapped shortly after, apparently affected by either the aforementioned knees or the brutal slam.
Victor: George Green, 1st-round tap
Sierra Seifert vs. Bailey Ray Jackson
The fifth fight of the night featured the first and only women’s bout as Sierra Seifert met Bailey Ray Jackson. Both fighters landed a couple of nice exchanges early in the first, however Siefert locked up Jackson in the clinch and delivered a high knee that dropped Jackson to the mat.
Siefert pursued and remained heavy, delivering effective ground and pound from the top. When the fighters got back to their feet, Jackson was visibly exhausted, and Siefert quickly took advantage.
Siefert advanced and caught Jackson with another high knee, dropping Jackson again to canvas. This time, Siefert stood over Jackson and delivered several crushing high hammer fists until the referee had seen enough and called the first-round TKO.
Victor: Sierra Seifert, 1st-round TKO
Terrence Jones vs. Arron Dearmond
Arron Dearmond’s wrestling was on display early in this one, as he did a nice job applying forward pressure, keeping Jones against the cage and defending against takedowns throughout the first round. As the round came to a close, I had it 10/9 Dearmond, and we were advancing past the first round for only the second time that evening.
Jones’ corner must have told him that he lost the first, because he came out with a dire sense of urgency in the second round, opening up with his hands and landing several huge punches. Sensing that Dearmond was now respecting his hands, Jones seized the moment with a nice level change and went in for a takedown.
From the top, Jones delivered short, but effective ground and pound, then transitioned to the north/south position, punishing Dearmond with punches to the stomach. Later in the round, Dearmond did manage to get Jones’ back and finish on top, however I thought that Jones had done enough to win the round, and I gave it to him 10/9. I had it all tied up at 19/19 going into the third.
Both fighters came out in the third round throwing big punches. However, Dearmond applied the same forward pressure that had been so successful for him in the first round and quickly pressed and held Jones against the cage. Dearmond used this position to secure a takedown, and he found himself in a very high mount.
After delivering several big shots from the mount, Dearmond worked his leg around and obtained a mounted triangle, meanwhile continuing to lay down heavy punches. Jones was saved by the horn, and I gave the round and fight to Dearmond 10/9 and 29/28, respectively. Two out of the three judges agreed and Dearmond won the split decision.
Victor: Arron Dearmond, split decision
Justin Starks vs. Jalen Hill
Justin Starks vs. Jalen Hill featured the first of two titles up for grab at Brawlroom Beatdown III. In the first act of this five round fight, both fighters took their time finding their ranges, picking and prodding with several big punches and effective leg kicks. I thought that Starks was the aggressor, and he was more efficient with his striking. I gave him the round 10/9.
As the second round began, Hill landed a nice leg kick that briefly dropped Starks to the canvas. That being said, I felt that Hill still hadn’t found his range as of the second round, seemingly throwing punches from too far outside. Starks seemed to have settled in first, and he landed a nice takedown later in the round. I had it 20/18 Starks going into the third.
As the third round opened up, Hill got in some nice work from the clinch, delivering several strong knees. But, shortly after Starks changed levels and got another takedown. After some ground and pound, Hill got to his feet, but was taken down shortly thereafter. Starks ended the round on top, and I had it a shutout, 30/27, going into the fourth.
Hill really began to find his range in the fourth, opening up with nice 1-2 combinations, and following them up with leg kicks. Feeling a shift in momentum, Starks wisely took the fight back to the ground. Although he couldn’t exact much ground and pound from the top, Starks derailed Hill’s momentum train, and he may had done enough to steal the round. Either way, I felt that the only way Hill could get the win would had been with a fifth-round finish.
As the fifth round began, both fighters seemed to be feeling the effects of championship rounds, but Starks appeared to be the fresher of the two. He secured a takedown early, and anytime that Hill managed to get to his feet, he was dragged right back down by the visibly larger Justin Starks. Starks not only appeared to be the bigger fighter, but he was also the better grappler, and I thought that he won at least four out of the five rounds. However, the first judge had it scored 48/47 Hill, and Starks ended up with the split decision.
Victor: Justin Starks, split decision
Spencer Deegan vs. Carlos Talavera
In the second title fight of the evening, Spencer Deegan took on Carlos Talavera. In the opening round, both fighters quickly dialed in their ranges, and there were several good exchanges early on. Deegan decided to take things to the mat and shot in and secured a single leg takedown. Although his nose was bloodied by the end of the round, I felt that Deegan had done more than enough to win it.
The second round began with a nice level change from Deegan and he secured an early takedown. In this round, I felt that Deegan got the better of the exchanges, and he was clearly the aggressor. I had the fight 20/18 going into the third.
Deegan opened the third round with another takedown, and he delivered a few short punches from side control. Deegan maintained control and stayed heavy as Talavera took to turtle position. Talavera was clearly exhausted at this point, however he did manage to win the scramble and he transitioned into an anaconda choke attempt. Although he wasn’t successful in the submission, he ended the round on top, and I felt he did enough to steal it from Deegan. I had it 29/28 Deegan going into championship rounds.
Both fighters were visibly worn down as the action waned in the fourth round. Talavera seemed to be finding his range early in the round, landing some efficient leg kicks and a sharp uppercut. Although Deegan was persistent in his forward pressure and cage control, I don’t think he did enough to win the round. I had it all tied up going into the fifth.
Deegan was again the aggressor in the fifth and final round, trying to make the cage as small as possible for an exhausted and ever-retreating Talavera. It appeared to me that Talavera was comfortable going into the decision, and I felt like that cost him the fight. As the final horn blew, I had it 48/47 Deegan, and all three judges agreed.
Victor: Spencer Deegan, unanimous decision
Lance Thompson vs. Tyler Hill
In the main event of the evening, Lance Thompson faced former Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series contestant Tyler Hill. This fight opened up with a bang, as both men threw heavy. Thompson landed a heavy right that reverberated throughout the Biloxi Community Center. The action slowed down, as Hill pressed Thompson into the cage. However, Thompson got underhooks and reversed the position. From here, the fight would not last much longer.
From this position, Thompson eventually got the takedown, and upon trying to get to his feet, Hill mistakenly gave up his back. Thompson obliged and flattened out the distressed Hill. From there, Thompson made easy work of his opponent, getting his arm under the chin and locking up the first-round rear naked choke for a huge main event win.
Victor: Lance Thompson, 1st-round submission, rear naked choke