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Joe Wilk moves back into title contention with win at VFC Fight Night: 'Junction City'

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The people in central Kansas last Friday night (Aug. 26, 2011) finally got to see what makes Victory Fighting Championship (VFC) the Midwest's premier MMA promotion: a commitment to putting on exciting fights that keep fans coming back.

With the sellout crowd at the Mariott Convention Center, it's a safe bet that VFC will be back, but in a larger venue. With this being a show where the amateurs outnumbered the professionals, it was really up to them to set the pace and they didn't disappoint.

In the opening fight of the night, Nate Alvarez (2-2) used superior wrestling and top control to earn a decision over Army Lieutenant Paul Lewdownski (1-2). The second fight saw two Muay Thai fighters duke it out for close to three rounds before Brandon Phillips (6-1) caught Keith Koen (4-6) in a standing guillotine. The third fight saw Cody Hazerd (3-1) grind out a decision over Matt Valnoski (6-3). Proving you can never count someone out, Cody Rhinehart (3-1) outlasted the first round onslaught of Josh Pfiefer (5-4) to win by guillotine in the second.

In the amateur main event, and what would end up being "fight of the night" (FOTN), Gregg Van De Creek (7-1) won a hard fought decision victory over Jett Jones (12-5). Gregg, who normally fights heavyweight, was originally without an opponent and fight night was getting closer.

Jett, who fights at 185-pounds, agreed to take the fight at 205. Having a significantly bigger opponent to grapple with tends to wear you out, as does cutting an amount of weight that you're not used to cutting.

Not these two.

They fought nonstop until the final bell with the decision going to Gregg. Upon winning FOTN, Gregg announced he was donating $500 dollars to the Muscular Dystrophy Association, which VFC promoter Ryan Stoddard promptly matched.

Between that and the crowd donations, over $1200 dollars was raised that night.

In the first pro fight of the evening Jake "The Librarian" Lindsey (3-0) looked to keep his undefeated streak going against Danny Black (5-4). Jake wasted no time getting this fight to the ground and setting up some brutal ground and pound. It didn't take long for Danny to give up his back and Jake sunk in a rear naked choke for a first round win. In the co-main event, Army Captain Brandon Bear (1-0) made his pro debut against Chris Page (4-5).

Brandon wasted no time in getting Page on the mat and against the cage. Once there, he unleashed a flurry of punches that had the referee stopping the fight.

In the main event of the night, Joe "The Nose" Wilk (14-6) faced off against Angelo Duarte (8-6). There was a lot of pressure on Joe to win this fight.  This was Joe's first fight in front of his hometown crowd in years and he was looking at getting another shot at the VFC 145-pound title if he should win.

If Joe felt any pressure, no one could tell as he quickly went to work with his aggressive jiu-jitsu. Although Duarte seemed to have a really good submission defense, Wilk's transitions from one sub attempt to the next proved too much and Joe won via first round triangle choke.

With their first traveling show a success, it's more than likely that VFC will be looking at other towns for Fight Nights in 2012. So make sure to stay tuned to the latest news at to see if they are coming to a town near you.

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