Red Deer mixed martial artists Stephanie Essensa and Wolfgang Janssen entered enemy territory in Calgary on Friday night, and both came home with first-round stoppages.
“It was a really short night,” said Arashi-do mixed martial artist instructor Gary Vig. “They were both done pretty early.”
In the first fight of the evening at the Hard Knocks fight card, Essensa, 2-0, was pitted against Lalena Dsautels, 0-1. Dsautels, 30, came out very fast in the first round and cut off the ring. From there, the two fighters worked into a clinch.
Essensa, 24, using superior positioning and technique, controlled the thai clinch and proceeded to rain knees into the Calgary fighter’s body. Dsautels tried to escape the clinch and take the Red Deer mixed martial artist down, but Essensa sprawled, locked in a guillotine, and pushed her opponent into the cage, forcing the Calgary fighter to tap out at 49 seconds of the first round of the 115-pound tilt.
“The last knee she hit her with was really hard and that prompted Lelana to go for a desperation take down,” said Vig. “Stephanie very easily half sprawled it, Lelana went to her knees, and there it was.”
Janssen, 2-1, took on Roger Redoble, 1-2, of Calgary, and although the fight lasted a little longer, the result was the same — a first-round submission stoppage.
The round started cautiously with both fighters feeling each other out. When Redoble started to move forward, Janssen, 18, shot in and took the Calgary fighter to the canvas. Janssen was just settling into top position when Redoble, 19, attempted an arm bar from the bottom. Janssen scrambled to defend and had to spin out a couple of times to escape the submission attempt. Janssen then went back to guard, moved to half guard, proceeded to ground and pound, went to mount and then locked in an armbar of his own forcing the Calgary fighter to tap out of the 135-pound contest at 2:05 of the first round.
“Redoble snapped out a pretty good armbar attempt on Wolfgang, and Wolfgang had to really scramble to get out,” said Vig. “After that Wolfgang settled in and methodically passed his guard, went to half guard, did some good solid ground and pound, stayed tight, controlled him tight, worked the mount and then put on an armbar of his own. That one Roger didn’t get out of.”
Vig was very pleased with Janssen’s performance
“It was excellent,” said the Arashi-do sensei. “He looked really, really sharp, very composed. When he had to go, he really exploded. It was really a good fight for him.”