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MMA fighters brawl on Buckley

Jeremiah Talley, left, delivers a strike to Todd Sheffield’s nose at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center.  Talley defeated Sheffield, a U.S. Air Force Reserve staff sergeant from Peterson Air Force Base, with a technical knockout.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Riley Johnson/Released)

Jeremiah Talley, left, delivers a strike to Todd Sheffield’s nose at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. Talley defeated Sheffield, a U.S. Air Force Reserve staff sergeant from Peterson Air Force Base, with a technical knockout. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Riley Johnson/Released)

The crowd reacts to fighters at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force Base.  This event was the first sanctioned mixed martial arts event on a Colorado military base.  (U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Marcy Glass/Released)

The crowd reacts to fighters at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force Base. This event was the first sanctioned mixed martial arts event on a Colorado military base. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Senior Airman Marcy Glass/Released)

Reed O’Malley, right, throws a punch at Todd Meredith at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. O’Malley vs. Meredith was one of eight bouts at the fight night hosted by the 460th Force Support Squadron. O’Malley is a U.S. Marine Corps sergeant.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Riley Johnson/Released)

Reed O’Malley, right, throws a punch at Todd Meredith at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. O’Malley vs. Meredith was one of eight bouts at the fight night hosted by the 460th Force Support Squadron. O’Malley is a U.S. Marine Corps sergeant. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Riley Johnson/Released)

A bloodied Reed O’Malley congratulates his opponent Todd “Captain America” Meredith after a brutal battle Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley MMA Fight Night. Meredith won by technical knockout in the first round after delivering bone-crushing blows to O’Malley’s face from the mount position. (U.S Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicholas Rau/Released)

A bloodied Reed O’Malley congratulates his opponent Todd “Captain America” Meredith after a brutal battle Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley MMA Fight Night. Meredith won by technical knockout in the first round after delivering bone-crushing blows to O’Malley’s face from the mount position. (U.S Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicholas Rau/Released)

Mixed martial artist James Nakashima stretches before his fight, Feb. 9, 2013 in a back room of the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. Nakashima was victorious over Rick “The Reach” Van Seters at the Buckley MMA Fight Night. Van Seters is an Airman with the 460th Space Communications Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Darryl Bolden Jr./Released)

Mixed martial artist James Nakashima stretches before his fight, Feb. 9, 2013 in a back room of the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. Nakashima was victorious over Rick “The Reach” Van Seters at the Buckley MMA Fight Night. Van Seters is an Airman with the 460th Space Communications Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Darryl Bolden Jr./Released)

James Nakashima makes an entrance at Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, Buckley Air Force Base.  Nakashima claimed victory over Rick “the Reach” Van Seters in the first round of the night. This was also the first-ever mixed martial arts fight on a military installation in Colorado. Van Seters is a member of the 460th Space Communications Squadron and one of several military members that competed. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Phillip Houk/Released)

James Nakashima makes an entrance at Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, Buckley Air Force Base. Nakashima claimed victory over Rick “the Reach” Van Seters in the first round of the night. This was also the first-ever mixed martial arts fight on a military installation in Colorado. Van Seters is a member of the 460th Space Communications Squadron and one of several military members that competed. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Phillip Houk/Released)

Mixed martial artist Rick “The Reach” Van Seters walks out to the ring for his debut fight Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. Van Seters, an Airman with the 460th Space Communications Squadron, fought against James Nakashima at the Buckley MMA Fight Night. The judges declared Nakashima the victor. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Darryl Bolden Jr./Released)

Mixed martial artist Rick “The Reach” Van Seters walks out to the ring for his debut fight Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. Van Seters, an Airman with the 460th Space Communications Squadron, fought against James Nakashima at the Buckley MMA Fight Night. The judges declared Nakashima the victor. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Darryl Bolden Jr./Released)

Rick “the Reach” Van Seters receives a punch from James Nakashima during the first fight of the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force base. Van Seters, an Airman from the 460th Space Communications Squadron, fought his debut fight after eight years of training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Phillip Houk/Released)

Rick “the Reach” Van Seters receives a punch from James Nakashima during the first fight of the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force base. Van Seters, an Airman from the 460th Space Communications Squadron, fought his debut fight after eight years of training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Phillip Houk/Released)

Col. DeAnna Burt, 460th Operations Group commander, congratulates Rick "The Reach" Van Seters after his bout at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force Base. Van Seters, an Airman with the 460th Space Communications Squadron, lost a three-round battle versus James Nakashima. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Marcy Glass/Released)

Col. DeAnna Burt, 460th Operations Group commander, congratulates Rick "The Reach" Van Seters after his bout at the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force Base. Van Seters, an Airman with the 460th Space Communications Squadron, lost a three-round battle versus James Nakashima. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Marcy Glass/Released)

Tyler “Thunder” Toner, left, punches Cody Carrillo in the final bout of the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. USTREAM covered the fight night which was offered on pay-per-view; proceeds benefited the Wounded Warrior Project. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Riley Johnson/Released)
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Tyler “Thunder” Toner, left, punches Cody Carrillo in the final bout of the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. USTREAM covered the fight night which was offered on pay-per-view; proceeds benefited the Wounded Warrior Project. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Riley Johnson/Released)

The crowd cheers after watching Tyler Toner, an Aurora native, claim victory over Cody Carrillo Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. The 460th Force Support Squadron hosted the Buckley MMA Fight Night. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Darryl Bolden Jr./Released)
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The crowd cheers after watching Tyler Toner, an Aurora native, claim victory over Cody Carrillo Feb. 9, 2013, at the Buckley Air Force Base Fitness Center. The 460th Force Support Squadron hosted the Buckley MMA Fight Night. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Darryl Bolden Jr./Released)

Staff Sgt. Zachery Rayburn, 460th Space Communications Squadron radio frequency system crew member, sings the national anthem during the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force Base.  Rayburn has a long history of performing with the Air Force including a tour with Air Force Tops in Blue, the Air Force premier song and dance group. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Phillip Houk/Released)
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Staff Sgt. Zachery Rayburn, 460th Space Communications Squadron radio frequency system crew member, sings the national anthem during the Buckley MMA Fight Night Feb. 9, 2013, at Buckley Air Force Base. Rayburn has a long history of performing with the Air Force including a tour with Air Force Tops in Blue, the Air Force premier song and dance group. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Phillip Houk/Released)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Editor's Note: This article is part of a series about the Buckley MMA Fight Night.

Buckley MMA Fight Night started with bright lights and thumping music, and it ended with bone-crushing punches and a dislocated rib.

In the first-ever official mixed martial arts event on a military base in Colorado, Team Buckley bore witness to a night full of knock-down, drag-out fights. The base fitness center was turned into an MMA arena Feb. 9 for eight gladiatorial contests. Each warrior trained mentally and physically to prepare for the night's events. Below is a recap of four scraps from the evening.

Cory Sandhagen vs. Seth Rodenbaugh - 145-pound weight class

The most crowd-rousing fight of the night involved a quick, but brutal, 15-second exchange between Sandhagen and Rodenbaugh, an Army infantry sniper and Purple Heart recipient.
The fight started with both fighters charging from their corners, colliding with kicks square in the chest. Sandhagen recovered first and jumped onto the stunned Rodenbaugh. Blow after devastating blow connected with the soldier's face, leaving him scrambling to defend himself. The referee dove in and called an end to the fight, giving Sandhagen the technical knockout.

Cody Carrillo vs. Tyler "Thunder" Toner - 145-pound weight class

In the main event of the evening, the 5-foot-10-inch Carrillo battled Toner, an Ultimate Fighting Championship veteran and hometown hero.

The mixed martial artists traded blows while trying to discover the other's reach. Carrillo ended the first five-minute round with a double-leg takedown, transitioning into the mounted position and throwing an explosive punch to the Aurora native's head.

The round-two horn sounded and the brawlers were back at trading blows, but Toner was slowly building his advantage as the round progressed. A punch slipped through Carrillo's guard and caught him on the chin, sending him staggering back. "Thunder" pounced, chaining together a series of punches to the head and culminating with a massive body kick that took the air out of his opponent. With a quick jab, Toner slid under Carrillo and drove him into the cage.

"Stop, stop," Carrillo muttered as the referee called an end to the fight. "My rib popped out." And with that, Toner won the fight with a second round technical knockout.

Rick "The Reach" Van Seters vs. James Nakashima - 170-pound weight class

This Mauy Thai matchup pitted the 460th Space Communications Squadron's Van Seters against the Nebraska-native Nakashima.

Van Seters's long arms provided him with a significant reach in his debut fight versus the experienced and stocky Nakashima, and it looked like the Airman's strikes would keep him upright through the fight -- that was until round two.

Nakashima's strategy changed to bull-rushing into Van Seters to negate his reach and following up with powerful, straight punches to the chin. These blasts lifted "The Reach" into the air, scoring Nakashima four knockdowns during the fight. However, after each time on the canvas, Van Seters rose to his feet, never giving up.

"I didn't want to lose in front of the home crowd," said Van Seters. "They came out and supported me, and I didn't want to lose."

Todd Sheffield vs. Jeremiah Talley - 185-pound weight class

Sheffield, an Air Force Reserve staff sergeant, took to the ring in his debut fight versus the undefeated Talley.

Talley started strong in this scrap with a head strike into a takedown, which he followed up with a choke hold. Undaunted, the sergeant defended the choke and looked for an opening. The grappling continued until Talley was finally able to assume the mount. Dishing out punishment from a superior position, Talley drove hammer fists down into Sheffield's face. The ref, noticing one of fighters was unable to defend himself properly, rushed in between the fighters and called an end to the bout. Talley continued his undefeated streak with a technical knockout.

It was a great opportunity to get out here and fight; it's something 95 percent of people here will never get a chance to do, said the AF reservist.
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