ALVIN Cacdac finally celebrated a victory in front of his home crowd.
The 31-year-old Filipino-American mixed martial artist forced compatriot Ernesto Montilla Jr. to submit to claim the vacant Pacific X-treme Combat flyweight crown on Saturday night at the Ynares Arena in Pasig.
Thus, Cacdac, born to Filipino parents in Carranglan, Neva Ecija, but raised in San Jose, California, emerged victorious on Philippine soil this time after winning his last two fights overseas.
“It’s about time,” Cacdac said. “I just wanted to pound him, but I took advantage of the opportunity presented me.”
Cacdac, who dedicated the win to his cousin who passed away recently, controlled the fight with his ground and pound, but instead finished the fight by locking Montilla with a rear-naked choke with two minutes and 14 seconds left in the third round of the championship bout.
Cacdac appeared poised to score an early knockout when he was on a full mount over Montilla and pummeled him with his ground and pound only for the latter to be saved by the first-round bell.
The fight was momentarily stopped twice, first when Montilla accidentally poked Cacdac’s right eye and second when Cacdac unintentionally hit his foe with a low blow.
How thrilling the flyweight title fight was turned out to be the opposite of the uneventful co-main event.
Chuji Kato captured the vacant lightweight crown after a unanimous-decision win over Filipino Glen Ranillo in a match full of dull moments that left the audience booing.
Seemingly lacking the sense of urgency that was supposed to be evident in a title fight, both 155-pound fighters were feeling out each other out the entire five-round match, before the Japanese fighter eventually gained the edge in the scorecards.
Former bantamweight champion Crisanto Pitpitunge started his bid to reclaim the crown as the Filipino edged Thai Rambaa Somdet via split decision.
In the lone women’s bout, Gina Iniong failed to use the bell as her ally as the Filipina fighter tapped out of a rear-naked choke by Cortney Casey of the US with only seconds remaining in the first round.
Roy Doliguez repulsed fellow Filipino Dennis Salazar via unanimous decision, while Jenel Lausa forced Dean Bermudez to submit with a guillotine choke in the first round of another all-Pinoy bout.
In other results of the nine-fight card, Mark Abelardo knocked out Ernie Braca in the first round; Pinoy Josh Sapinoso defeated Guamanian Robin Eclavea; Arex Montalban, however, lost to Brazilian Wesley Perriera.