June 15, 2017

    While most people were out and about enjoying time at the beach, we here at Ivey League preferred to spend time battling it out inside a boxing ring, with our friends from sister school, Crazy 88 MMA, in Elkridge.

    We sent some up and coming fighters to take part in what’s called a “Smoker” event, or smoker fights.

    These are fights that take place at someone’s gym and don’t count for wins or losses.

    Experience is the name of the game when it comes to smoker fights and that’s exactly what these guys and gals needed.

    It gives newer fighters the chance to compete in a ring, against someone they don’t know, in a different environment, in front of a good-sized crowd.

    These types of events are invaluable when it comes to grooming these beginner level fighters and helping them along so that when the time comes to fight in a big event they’ll be ready.

    You learn so much from smoker fights while at the same time not having to deal with all the pressure of fighting in a big venue, under the bright lights where winning is a big deal.

    The following students fought with skill, heart and class:

    Greece Tziamourani
    Hannah Goldman
    Jason Ligget
    Jarrod Dixon
    Matt Creel
    Joe Coggiano
    Lydia Bruno
    Mark David

    I don’t have time to write detail for detail how each fight played out but I did manage to write a few things.

    Just know that I’m proud of each and every fighter who stepped into the ring.

    That’s something 99.9% of people would never have the guts to do. I respect anyone willing to step up to the plate and do this and you should too.

    The Women Were Awesome and Totally Stole the Show

    Without a doubt, when the dust settled it ended up being the ladies who shined the most.

    Greece Tziamourani, Hannah Goldman and Lydia Bruno all fought their hearts out and left everything in the ring.

    Greece (That’s her nickname because her real name is pretty much impossible to pronounce) was outstanding.

    She used lots of body shots, good head movement and footwork to control the fight and her opponent.

    Seeing Greece do so well was really special for me because it wasn’t that long ago this same girl came to us scared and in search of help because of bullies at school.

    She wanted to learn how to defend herself and maybe one day fight.

    Well, I think it’s safe to say based on last Saturday she’s more than capable of defending herself, and indeed can not only fight, but fight well 🙂

    And just like Greece, Hannah Goldman came to Ivey League not long ago, knowing absolutely nothing about fighting or how to fight.

    It didn’t take long for me to realize Hannah was the real deal and would one day fight. It turns out that one day was last Saturday.

    Hannah was originally supposed to fight in April in Va Beach but had to pull out due to a rib injury.

    I’ll be honest I wasn’t even sure she’d be healed up in time to fight at Crazy 88.

    However, after a few “Test” rounds sparring, using myself as the guinea pig (She beat the crap outta me FYI), the rib wasn’t an issue anymore and I cleared her to fight.

    Needless to say she was pretty excited 🙂

    Hannah did fantastic in what turned out to be pretty much an old-school Philly brawl.

    Both girls traded shots to the head and body from the start of round one till the final bell in round three at a pace that would give most people a heart attack.

    How they kept up that pace I have no idea. I got tired just from watching them.

    I think what made the difference for Hannah was her ability to control the distance, using her long reach, and using the ring to her favor in numerous ways.

    Last but certainly not least was 105 pound firecracker Lydia Bruno.

    Lydia came to Ivey League through Coach Nick, our Boxing Instructor.

    Right away everyone loved Lydia and the positive attitude she brings to the room.

    What I really like about Lydia is she’s very detail oriented and uses a very smooth, fluid style of Boxing.

    Lydia was matched up with an opponent of similar skill and experience, which worked out well for both girls.

    The fight ended up being really fun to watch, with lots of good technical skills being shown throughout.

    Lydia (And her opponent) used good head movement, a good jab and quick in and out movement throughout the fight.

    It went all three rounds and those in attendance loved every second of it, myself included.

    I can’t take credit for the way our girls performed. Coaches Danny and Nick Kisner deserve a lot of praise because they spent countless hours working with all three girls.

    Also big thanks to our Kickboxing coaches and those who helped work the corners including Scott Keller, Al Craveling, Joe Huggins, Thor Davis and Cungle Bassard.

    All in all it was a great day of action-packed fights, from both men and women. Thanks so much to Crazy 88, in particular Julius Park and Aung La, for hosting us.

    Next up for the fight team is Boxing I believe on July 22nd. I’ll be sure to keep everyone posted on that and other events in the near future.

    Oh and before I forget, our favorite Heavyweight Jeff “Final Destination” Blachly makes his return to the cage on July 28th in Columbus Ohio. Stay tuned for results by checking our FaceBook Page, this blog and your email inbox.

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