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Clark ends skid with first-round TKO Print E-mail
Written by Ben Pherson   
Sunday, 31 January 2010 14:23

Eyota native Logan Clark let out a few weeks worth of pent up aggression Saturday night during the main event of Gladiators, a nine-fight event sponsored by Kathy's Pub at Olmsted County Fairgrounds in Rochester.

After having this fight set and then canceled countless times, and not being medically cleared by the Minnesota Combative Sports Commission until Saturday afternoon, Clark was more than ready to step into the cage and take out his frustration on Chris Barden.

Clark shot across the cage as soon as the opening bell sounded, and he started throwing wild punches at an overwhelmed Barden.

Nothing landed solidly, but eventually Clark took the Rochester native to the mat and imposed his will. Before long, Barden was curled up in the turtle position, and Clark was picking his targets. First, he worked on the head. When Barden defended that, Clark unloaded on Barden’s kidneys. Soon referee Daryl Guthmiller was forced to stop the fight when Barden stopped defending himself.

The entire barrage lasted less than two minutes.

“It’s nice to finally be back in the win column,” Clark said. “I needed to get a win here at some point to get back to the bigger shows. It’s a decent win. It was nice to come out and throw strikes. I enjoy doing that.”

Clark said that wasn’t his most aggressive fight, but it was close. It was, however, his most aggressive striking.

“No, I’ve been much meaner,” Clark said. “You should have seen what I did to Chuck Parmelee. It’s not the meanest I’ve ever been, but it was probably the most aggressive striking I’ve ever done. But that was only because I knew I could.”

The UFC and WEC veteran admitted the various stresses placed upon his shoulders leading up to the show influenced his fighting style.

“With it being on and off so many times, and then dealing with the commission, it was a lot of frustration that needed to be let out,” Clark said.

The former Dover-Eyota wrestler and Winona State University graduate hopes to be fighting back with a big promotion soon. Clark would like to stay active this year and fight at least five times.

“Hopefully I’ll fight somewhere outside of the region in spring, and then maybe I’ll be back in Rochester in May. It depends on the schedule. But I definitely want to be more active this year,” Clark said.

The night didn’t go as well for Clark’s Rochester MMA teammates.

Amateur 175-pounder Heath Rud suffered a second-round loss to Canadian Mariuscz Ksiazkiewicz of Winnipeg Academy of Mixed Martial Arts.

Rud appeared to win the first round with a pair of takedowns. The former Byron High School wrestling standout also took Ksiazkiewicz to the mat in the second round. But Rud was caught in a kimura, and it appeared that his elbow was dislocated during the fight (see the picture in the photo gallery ... it’s nasty).

Rud said he didn’t realize how deep the kimura was until it was too late, and the elbow was already gone.

Ksiazkiewicz, who is a lanky (6-foot-4) kickboxer, improved to 3-0. His coach, Curtis Brigham, said this was his toughest fight.

“That match was fantastic,” Brigham said. “He’s a kickboxing and jiu-jitsu guy, but he’s not much of a wrestler. So this was good to see where he’s at. It was a good, physical matchup; that (Rud) was strong. And he was strong in the area’s where Mariuscz is weak, so it was a perfect matchup.”

Brigham brought three fighters to Rochester, and all three turned in amazing performances.

First up was 18-year-old Brad Katona. He met fellow 135-pounder Derek DeSart in the middle of the cage, and the two immediately started throwing hands. But Katona overwhelmed DeSart, taking him to the mat. Once on the ground, Katona gained good position and started delivering a flurry of punches. When DeSart offered his back, Katona took it and quickly locked in a rear-naked choke. DeSart never tapped out, so he went to sleep.

Next up was 19-year-old Louis Fisette. He wasted little time pulling guard on Andy Selvig. After a guillotine attempt failed, Fisette transitioned to a triangle choke, and Selvig tapped out immediately.

With Ksiazkiewicz’s win, it was a perfect 3-0 night for Winnipeg Academy of Mixed Martial Arts.

“They were all ready, but you never know what’s going to happen,” Brigham said. “They were all prepared. With amateurs it’s such a variation, from guys who are just starting out to guys who are about ready to turn pro, so you never know what to expect. We always take guys from here seriously because most of them wrestled in high school, unlike Canada where there’s almost no wrestling.”

Brigham said while his fighters are young, they’ve been training for years.

“They come from the new generation, where they train in everything,” Brigham said. “These guys leave me in the dust.”

Rochester MMA gained just one more victory on the night. Newcomer Nick Bussell earned a TKO win over Team Crazy’s Cody Furlong in the third round of the night’s first fight.

“Bussell stuck to the game plan. He did what we told him to do, took the guy down and used his ground and pound,” Clark said. “It’s tougher to finish an amateur fight quickly because there are no elbows, but he did a good job.”

Both Furlong and Bussell were making their MMA debuts.

Rochester MMA teammates Mike McIntyre and Eric Pettengill suffered losses. McIntyre lost via guillotine choke to Team Crazy’s Bruce “Oddballer” Johnson in the first round, while Pettengill also lost via guillotine, to Iowa’s Jeremy Gabel.

Gabel was impressive in just his second MMA fight. Both Pettengill and Gabel were Iowa high school wrestling standouts, but it was Gabel’s submission game that controlled the fight. Twice he attempted standing guillotines. The second time, Pettengill was forced to tap.

“That guy had more submissions than we anticipated,” Clark said. “Eric needs to work on his submission game, and we know that.”

In addition to Johnson’s win, Team Crazy picked up two more victories Saturday night. Jeremy Lafferty, who just recently started training again, beat Mike Bannister with an Americana in the first round. Lafferty completely overwhelmed Bannister, getting the best of it on the feet and on the ground.

Team Crazy prospect Dan Copp also went home a winner. Copp quickly KO’d Frank DiDominico in the first round.

The next Rochester mixed martial arts event is tentatively scheduled for May 15.




  1. Nick Bussell defeated Cody Furlong via TKO in the third round.
  2. Brad Katona defeated Derek Desart via rear-naked choke in the first round.
  3. Jeremy Gabel defeated Eric Pettengill via guillotine choke in the first round.
  4. Dan Copp defeated Frank DiDominico by KO in the first round.
  5. Bruce Johnson defeated Mike McIntyre via guillotine choke in the first round.
  6. Louis Fisette defeated Andy Selvig via triangle choke in the first round.
  7. Jeremy Lafferty defeated Mike Bannister via Americana in the first round.
  8. Mariuscz Ksiazkiewicz defeated Heath Rud via kimura in the second round.
  9. Logan Clark defeated Chris Barden via TKO in the first round (1:30).

Last Updated on Sunday, 31 January 2010 17:37