No tears were shed Friday night when Lewis Gonzalez (8-0) and Emmanuel Sanchez (4-1) met in the cage at the Jackson Sports Arena in Sacramento, but there was plenty of blood and sweat to go around as the two fighters went the distance in one of the more exciting match-ups at West Coast Fighting Championship V.
For the first time in his career, Gonzalez fought through all three rounds and put his fate in the hands of the judges. The two fighters entered the night with unblemished records but it was Gonzalez who emerged victorious and remained unbeaten via majority decision, 30-27, across all three score cards.
“The guy was tough. You can’t finish a guy who has heart like that and don’t want to get finished,” Gonzalez said of his opponent. “I’d rather only go one round, but its good knowing that my training paid off and I can go all three rounds if I need to.”
The 165 pound catch weight fight was bloody from the very beginning as a Sanchez head butt split open Gonzalez’ right eyebrow in the initial minutes of round one. Cut for the first time in his career, Gonzalez turned to his ground game and penetrated Sanchez’ defense with an array of takedowns which included suplays, trips, and throws. Once on the ground, the Turlocker hit his Oregonian opponent with hammer strikes and elbows until he, too, was covered in blood.
“I was joking around with Sanchez after the fight; I said too bad there’s no fight of the night bonus because I think we would have got it,” Gonzalez said.
Sanchez’ takedown defense strengthened as the fight progressed but rounds two and three played out much like round one with the two fighters exchanging blows from their feet before taking it to the ground where Gonzalez all but dominated.
The win was Gonzalez’ first since enlisting the management services of MMA Gold. As for his future, Gonzalez is now looking at a two case scenario: a possible signing with either UFC or Bellator or a shot at WFC’s Lightweight Championship.
“Hopefully, there were some Bellator or UFC guys here,” Gonzalez said. “I think it was finally good that I have one; that I got that out of the way. I showed them I can go the distance and dominate, that I put in my training and I can go for three five-minute rounds.”