Between its two New York locations, WNY MMA is a martial arts gym that produces some of the state’s top talent. Their most well-known fighter is Patrick Mix, who Tapology ranks as the best bantamweight in the state and a top-five bantamweight nationwide. WNY MMA is also home to Solomon Renfro and Erik Herbert, who are the top two middleweights in the state.
But, at Steeltown Throwdown, it’s not about the pro fighters for WNY MMA. Instead, this event is about their amateur fighters. They are sending four fighters to 247 Fighting Championships‘ inaugural event, all of whom are looking to defeat hometown opponents and impress the Pittsburgh crowd.
WNY MMA at Steeltown Throwdown
Jamie Hare was the first WNY fighter to be announced for Steeltown Throwdown. Hare is a 28-year-old fighter and this will be his second career fight. He will be facing off against Pittsburgh’s Adam Oatman in a light heavyweight bout. Hare is predominantly a wrestler, and is very confident in his takedowns and ground and pound abilities. He has been training with some All-American college wrestlers throughout his camp.
But, Hare knows that there is more to MMA than wrestling. He trains his muay thai three times a week, including private sessions with coach Mark Shaw. Hare is heading into the fight confident and comfortable no matter where the fight goes.
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Today we did an hour of situational drills. For this camp, I brought in one of my old wrestling partners. @_ra.smith being an outstanding college wrestler and weight at 215lbs, is a great training partner for me. No fighter is going to give me a fight pace that I am getting in practice. By doing situational awareness drills, It allows us to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Trying to fight from a position of discomfort especially when exhausted. As you can see alex is taking shots, doesn't panic and catches me being to high. Lesson learned by both of us, but these drills can make or break a fighter in the cage. Fight camp is in full swing!!
Jake Braunscheidel is a prospect in every sense of the word. He is just 21 years old and will be making his debut at Steeltown Throwdown. Braunscheidel and Hare train together at WNY MMA’s North Buffalo location. Like Hare, Braunscheidel’s background is in wrestling.
“Wrestling is everything I’ve wanted to do since I was little,” he said. “There’s no doubt in my mind that I will take my opponent down. This fight will be on the ground.” Braunscheidel says he has worked hard on his striking and is comfortable on the feet, but will be looking to get the fight to the ground.
Braunscheidel says there are some nerves in anticipation of the fight, but that is nothing new. “I had nerves before every wrestling match, but I always went out there and got the job done. I’ve been in plenty of finals matches where I’ve been put on a big stage, so having all eyes on me while battling another guy is nothing new to me,” he said.
Pat Carrasquillo is not like the rest of his WNY MMA teammates. The 27-year-old fighter did not hesitate to get it out there that he is not a wrestler. “I am a standup fighter,” Carrasquillo said. “I do not wrestle. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a great team full of some really experienced wrestlers, and have been picking things up from them.”
Despite his preference of fighting on the feet, Carrasquillo realizes the importance of wrestling, especially for his lightweight fight with Rob Licht. “I know my opponent wrestles, so I respect that he has experience in this area and I don’t. If needed, I will show I am capable of competing on the feet as well as on the ground if I am put in that situation. I’m always working on making myself better and working to learn and improve my craft,” Carrasquillo said. He will definitely be looking to strike, but Pat Carrasquillo has worked hard to be confident in his abilities wherever the fight goes.
Kyle Beaver is the fourth of the WNY MMA prospects fighting at Steeltown Throwdown. Beaver a 25-year-old welterweight fighter. Like some of his teammates, Beaver says he is most comfortable with his fight being on the ground. “I love controlling the fight and being able to keep it standing or take it to the ground, which is what I thrive on,” Beaver said. He was victorious via unanimous decision in his first career fight, which took place back in 2016. Since then, Beaver has fought in kickboxing. So, he clearly is perfectly comfortable with the fight taking place. He has experience in kickboxing, wrestling and jiu-jitsu, the latter of which he is a national champion. Against Michael Siegfried of Indio Dojo, Beaver will likely be putting his skills on the mat to good use.