ProElite is coming back to the islands of Hawaii on January 21, 2012 at the Neal Blaisdell Center. The main card will be televised live on HDNet at 10 P.M. EST.
Returning to the ProElite cage after breaking into the world top ten rankings, 9th ranked Olympic silver medalist Sara McMann (4-0) will be facing off against the 5th ranked Hitomi “Girlfight Monster” Akano (18-8). Coming off a dominant performance capped off with a keylock submission in the third round against Raquel Pa’aluhi, McMann hopes to continue climbing the ladder of the world rankings. “This will be my biggest test since the Olympic Games, so I’m very excited to be competing against Hitomi. I’m confident I belong in the top 5 in the world and beating her soundly should put me there.”
Fighting out of Tokyo, Japan, Akano has fought the who’s who of women’s MMA. She possesses an extremely technical and effective ground game that is evident by 14 of her 18 victories coming by way of submission. This fight will carry heavy implications in the women’s 135 pound world rankings. Head of Fight Operations for ProElite T.Jay Thompson said this about the fight, “I’m as excited for this WMMA fight as I am for the Main Event. Two topped 10 ranked fighters putting all on the line. That’s what ProElite is all about!”
The main card is rounded out by a matchup between two heavy handed fighters that both won their last fights by KO. Brent Schermerhorn (4-1), currently serving in the U.S. Navy, put a beating on Jesse Lundgren with a barrage of punches, bringing an end to the fight at just 1:38 of the first round.
Standing across the cage from him will be B.J. Penn trained fighter Kaleo Gambill (1-0). He turned off the lights of Eldon Sproat at 1:31 of the first round of their fight in August with some vicious ground and pound.
The main event features Hawaii native Kendall “Da Spyder” Grove (13-9) facing off against Japanese star Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa (51-32-8). Also featured on the main card are the semifinals of the Heavyweight Grand Prix. The first semifinal match showcases the very tough Ryan Martinez (6-1) taking on headhunter Cody Griffin (5-2) and in the opposite bracket heavy hitting Jake “The Honey Bear” Heun (2-1) takes on the biggest competitor in the tournament at 6-foot-5, Richard “The Black Eagle” Odoms (6-0).
Tickets for “ProElite presents: Da Spyder vs. Minowaman” are on sale now to the general public at the Neal Blaisdell Center box office, all Ticketmaster locations (800)745-3000, Ticketmaster online(www.ticketmaster.com) and www.ProElite.com.