• Jeremy Luchau

559 Fights brings fights, championship action to Orange Cove

Selma, Calif. – 559 Fights will crown a Middleweight Champion for the first time in over a year on Saturday, February 8.

In addition, mixed martial arts fans in Orange Cove will get their chance to see live MMA in their hometown for the first time, as 559 Fights drop their cage at the Orange Cove Community Center.

Doors open at 6 p.m. and fights start at 7. Tickets available online and can be purchased at the door the night of the event.

“It’s always exciting when you can take 559 Fights to a new city,” 559 Fights owner Jeremy Luchau said. “In the last eight years we’ve been to nine other cities and over a dozen different venues. Our goal has always been to bring 559 Fights and MMA to as many new communities and venues as possible.”

Orange Cove native Jared Velasquez (4-3) will compete for the vacant 185-pound title against Fresno’s AJ Perez (3-1) in the main event.

“Velasquez being from Orange Cove it just made a lot of sense to put him in a position to compete for a title and main event this event,” Luchau said. “We reached out to some other athletes in the area, but Velasquez was a guy that really has stood out.”

In the co-main event, two red-hot featherweights square off – Merced’s Caleb Morgan (2-0) and Grover Beach’s Marvin Garcia (2-0).

“It’s one of those fights where you can see the winner inserting himself in the title picture at 145 sooner than later,” Luchau said of the Morgan vs. Garcia showdown.

“There’s a few other bouts on this card that have future title implications as well.”Fresno flyweight Laz Maldonado (0-0) makes his MMA debut against Visalia’s Chris Castro (0-2) in a feature bout of the evening.

Jaime Llamas-Trevino (1-1) is back in action after suffering his first setback in September. The Merced welterweight takes on Fresno’s Marlon Watkins (1-5) and unbeaten lightweights will also be highlighted when Visalia’s Andrew Balandran (2-0) takes on Santa Barbara’s David Alvarado (4-0).

“We have a lot of very interesting bouts. I’ve watched Maldonado wrestle his whole life, he will be pretty small for the weight, but he’s a firecracker,” Luchau said. “I’m glad to have Jaime back in action and the Balandran vs. Alvarado bout could be a big one for us.”

In other bouts; Fresno bantamweight Joshua Dillon (2-2) takes on Bakersfield’s Arturo Burgos (1-1), Fresno featherweight Cameron McKinney (1-1) battles Bakersfield’s Emilio Cruz (1-0), Fresno lightweight David Chacon (1-1) takes on Bakersfield’s Dustin Cabrera (1-0), Modesto flyweight Tim Gutierrez (1-1) fights Ivanhoe’s Miguel Alvizar-Morales (1-1) and Tulare bantamweight Marcelino Silva (0-0) takes on Porterville’s Jarad Jennings (0-1).

559 Fights will also feature five special grappling matches; Oakland’s David Bitner vs. Kingsburg’s Alfredo Lara, Fresno’s Daniel Cavazos vs. Bakersfield’s Austin Burns, Merced’s Josiah Rich vs. Fresno’s Jordan Irizarry, Fresno’s Josh Blackmon vs. Fresno’s Severiano Perez and Fresno’s James Porter vs. Orange Cove’s Art Hernandez.

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