By KEVIN JAKAHI
Tribune-Herald sports writer
Toby “2 Quick” Misech fought through pain and a tough opponent in Mike Balasi to earn a three-round decision at Toughman Hawaii Xtreme on Saturday night at Hilo Civic.
Balasi beat Misech, a 2006 Hilo graduate, in a boxing match three years ago. The rematch was a kickboxing affair, allowing Misech to utilize his speed, especially swift leg kicks and flying knees.
In the first round, Balasi planted a left hook to the face, ushering Misech to the ropes. A few seconds later, Misech answered loudly, clocking a kick to the head, flooring Balasi.
Then the second round started quite painfully for Misech, who attempted a flying knee but was hit in the groin. He took his time to recover and attacked Balasi, smoking a left kick to the head. He sent him to the canvas again with a right hook.
Misech was going full blast, landing a left-right combination. He followed that haymaker with a kick that wounded Balasi. But Misech extended himself with another kick and hurt his groin, giving a wobbly Balasi valuable time to recover while Misech tried to get his bearings.
In the third Misech reared back and ripped a straight left to the chin. Later in the round, Misech tried a flying knee and Balasi countered with a knee at the same time that nailed groin, again. In pain but ahead in points, Misech kept attacking, kicking to force Balasi to block then following with hooks to the head.
The flying knees often closed the gap for Misech, who immediately got past Balasi’s front-door defense. Misech’s speed was apparent is his head movement to avoid cannon shots or when he blocked punches with his quick hands. However, he was still in close range to Balasi, getting tagged with stinging body shots.
Misech never went down. Actually, he did because of his groin pain. But he kept getting up, sticking and moving and scoring points.
Misech, 23, improved to 3-0 in kickboxing while Balasi fell to 1-3. The Oahu challenger 10-1 in pro boxing. He doesn’t compete in mixed martial arts, which was on the Toughman Xtreme card.
“This win means a lot to me. The last time we fought I thought I should have won, but dehydrated myself,” Misech said. “I wanted to erase that loss. I wanted to stick and move and throw a lot of kicks. He’s a boxer and not used to fighting.
“Kickboxing give me more experience for MMA. I get to try new things. It prepares me better and helps me work on my game, which is stand-up.”
Misech is 3-1 in MMA pro fights. He recently signed a three-fight deal with Pacific X-treme Combat, a Guam promotion. It’s his first multifight contract and he has a debut fight in January in Guam.
He was noticed by PXC at a ProElite bout on Oahu in January, a technical knockout over Steven Saito in the first round. Also, he was helped with connections from JD Penn and his trainer Chad Hao.
Riquo Abadilla went out a champion, announcing his last fight after he took a five-round decision over an iron-chin DJ Caseria for the Toughman 121-pound flyweight championship. Abadilla also holds the Just Scrap 135-pound title.
“I really love the sport and the competition,” Abadilla said. “But what’s important is my family. I have two young boys, ages 4 and 3 years old. I’d like to be the dad I should be. The belt is an accomplishment to show them. It means a lot to me. I get to share this with family and Hilo.”
The first round was filled with Abadilla highlights. He compiled three knockdowns: a right kick to the chin, a swift left kick to the shin, and a left-right combination that floored Caseria a third time. For the most part, Abadilla was first to the punch, controlling much of the tempo.
Every time Caseria dropped his left hand, even for a second, Abadilla drilled a right hook to the side of the head. Still, Caseria kept moving forward, looking to trade haymakers. But Abadilla had the better of exchanges and didn’t play defense in the fifth round, while ahead in points, winning the belt fighting to the end.
The trilogy boxing match between Dave “Mad Dog” Motta and David “Hurricane” Carter was canceled due to Carter failing to pass a medical test because of his eyesight (cataracts in both eyes). Motta, 52, holds the Toughman masters division title, something Carter, 48, wanted back around his waist.
“I’m disappointed. I was looking forward to the fight,” Motta said. “I’ve not fought in a year since I won the title. Nobody has stepped up.”
The night wasn’t completely empty for Motta, who judged the second-half fights. And he still went home with his Toughman belt and without a scratch.
Kenzin Santos defended his Toughman junior division title with a technical knockout over Matt Majamay, who failed to answer the bell for the fourth round. Majamay was kicked in the groin twice in the third round, using much of the five minutes allowed after each low blow.
In other bouts:
• MMA: Donald Gonzales def. Shayne Waiwaiole by three-round decision.
Near the end of the first round, Gonzales charged in and Waiwaiole flushed a straight right to his face, flooring him. But the bell rang before Waiwaiole could inflict any follow-up damage. In the second and third rounds, Gonzales got takedowns, blasted hard knees and threw a few good cracks on the head.
• Kickboxing: AJ Veriato def. Kawika Palakiko by first-round doctor stoppage, 1:28.
The much-anticipated rematch fizzled early when Palakiko’s left shoulder popped out. The two traded a few kicks and punches before the untimely injury.
• MMA: Derek Mahi def. Joey Aquino by three-round decision.
In the first round, Aquino attempted a flying knee from the bell, but Mahi was ready and got a takedown, but did little damage. It was much of the same in the second with Aquino playing defense much of the two minutes. In the third, Mahi sprawled a takedown attempt, gained side control and clobbered knees to the ribs.
• Kickboxing: Waylen Silva def. Josh Mendiola by three-round decision.
Unintentional low blows highlighted much of the bout. In the first round, Silva was kicked in the groin twice. In a rarity, both fighters delivered low blows at the same time in the third. Both went down. Mendiola was the first to stand, but Silva had the better of blows during the legal action.
• Kickboxing: Alex Bacdad def. Urban Iyo by third-round TKO, :45.
Bacdad kept ramming kicks, nine hard shots in all, tenderizing Iyo’s lead left leg and hampering his stability in the second round. After the bell, Bacdad continued his leg assault, blasting a pair of kicks, the last dropping Iyo to the floor for the TKO.
• Kickboxing: Ikaika Martin and Keola Limkin three-round draw.
Limkin, at 6 feet 1 and a good four inches taller, often clinched and went for Muay Thai knees. When he approached, Martin offered kicks and right hooks to the ribs. There was no defining blow, just a lots of exchanging of equal action.
• MMA: Nic Das df. Ikaika Rodrigues by second-round KO, :38.
Early in the second, Das fired a clean shot to the chin, dropping Rodrigues and sending him into immediate trouble. From there, Das flipped him over, got a secure side mount and went to work with ground-and-pound activity.
• Kickboxing: David McKinney def. Tavian Quiocho by first-round KO, 1:40.
McKinney, three inches taller at 5 feet 10, crashed three thundering shots, a backhanded punch that floored Quiocho, a solid kick to the thigh, and a flurry of Muay Thai knees, the last that was flush on the chin.
• Kickboxing: Josh Sosa def. Brydon Torres by third-round TKO, 1:05.
Sosa delivered big damage with hard kicks and knees, knocking the wind out of Torres in the second round. Then he punished Torres with a knee to the midsection in the third.
• Junior division kickboxing: Avery Sanchis def. Dayson Carter by three-round decision.
Sanchis relied on his four-inch height advantage and length to spoil the fighting debut of the 5-4 Carter, son of David “Hurricane” Carter. A couple of times, “Little Hurricane” got caught in a corner, where Sanchis fired combos and right kicks to the ribs, picking up most of his points.