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Fight Hard - 10/5 Event Preview

By Matt Frazier | Knuckle Junkies

The Family Arena - located in the heart of St. Charles - will likely swell to capacity once again as MMA fans from around the area will take advantage of the free tickets made available as Fight Hard nation returns Saturday night.

This show will have big shoes to fill following a string of solid fights at the promotion's July event.

July gave birth to a very strong amateur fight of the year candidate between Ira Lukowsky and Damian Newman. Newman clawed back to submit Lukowsky, delighting the crowd that made for an emotional night inside the cage.

Montuelle Prater is quickly becoming one of the area's best rising fighters. He will get promoted from his co-main event slot in July to take the top billing on Saturday night when he battles Cristian Santana from Sevencorner Road. Santana, now 5-0, won a split decision over Tyler Hubbs two weeks ago at the Rumble in the Park.

Also on the card, Sheldon Smith and Matt Murphy will touch gloves. Smith was victorious at the July card against the always tough Levi Rose when a freak hand injury forced a stoppage to the fight. Murphy was on the same card and defeated Kory Johnston Both of these fighters are very athletic with explosive striking and this could make for an entertaining match-up.

One fight to keep an eye on is a feature bout between Scott Futrell of Modern Combat System taking on Jesse Farmer from River City MMA.

We originally conducted this interview in preparation of a scheduled fight on September 7th. Unfortunately Futrell was hospitalized the week of the fight with severe dehydration and wasn't able to compete. Both fighters really wanted this fight and the bout was rescheduled for this Saturday.

Here are some excerpts from that interview:

Winding down his second full year of fighting, Futrell has been busy racking up over 30 amateur fights.

"I fought a lot of tough guys" Futrell said. "Every fight was a mental battle as much as physical. "Mr. Bad News" Kunz was one of the toughest fights for me because he was one of the first big names I got early in my career and he was well respected. I felt a lot of pressure building up to our first fight, but after it was all said and done I got my hand raised. From that point on I felt I could fight anybody. It gave my confidence a nice boost."

Futrell is quick to credit his improvement to his teammates and coaches at the Hazelwood-based MCS.

"Those guys push me to my end every day I get to work with all sizes from superheavy to flyweights." Futrell said. "Jared Block is a fantastic coach and friend. He has built a monster team and family and I'm proud to be apart of the movement."

In addition to his training partners at MCS, Futrell has been getting some rounds in with the pros at St. Charles MMA thanks to a recent partnership between coach Jared Block and SCMMA head coach Mike Rogers.

"Those guys are absolute beast," Futrell said. "I tell you, nothing like going and getting beat up by some of the best wrestlers and ground wizards in the area. Much respect to those guys."

Futrell understands he may not be the favorite to win in his fight against Farmer, but believes experience is on his side.

"Farmer is a respected fighter and has been fighting longer than me." Futrell said. "I feel that I'm the under dog in this fight, but what people fail to realize is I may be only almost two yrs in the game but I have a respectable record of 25-8 in that short time, and that's a lot of experience if you ask me."

Battle tested, Futrell is ready for any challenge.

"There is nothing Jesse can do to me or put me through that I haven't already seen or been through." Futrell said. "The way I see this fight ending is with my hand being raised and me getting a new pretty little trophy."

Farmer is riding a three fight win streak including wins over Daniel Schaab and Roy Davis.

"I will go out and preform to the best of my abilities like I do in every fight," Farmer said. "I want to give the fans a great show. I really want this win. To beat a great opponent like Scott will be a huge victory for me. I have been training really hard, and for a long time for this fight."

The young middleweight sees a great opportunity to test his skills against the experienced Futrell.

"I would say Scott is my toughest opponent yet." Farmer said. "He is so good at picking apart his opponents with his striking. Plus his reach is so long that I will be hard to get on the inside. But it will be a great test for me. It will be a great fight."

While Futrell's height and reach is a tough match-up for anyone, Farmer - nicked named "The Predator" - plans on nullifying the advantage by taking it to the ground.

"I see the fight eventually going to the ground," Farmer said. "I know my stand up has gotten a lot better as times goes by. So I hope to showcase some stand up. Till I get the takedown."

Will Futrell win his final amateur match before turning pro? Or will the young, hungry Farmer add another notch to his belt? Find out Saturday.

Full fight card:

M. Prater vs Cristian Santana - Main Event
Scott Futrell vs Jesse Farmer
Matt Murphy vs Sheldon Smith
KJ Jones vs Curtis Eller
Ryan Shelton vs Erik Newman
Aaron Harvey vs Michael Dorsey
Trevor Lanzone vs LC Hamid
Eloy Salvador vs Jake Willyard
Frankie Page vs Austin Cornell

Fight Hard MMA
Saturday, October 5th
St. Charles Family Arena, St. Charles, MO

Photo courtesy of Jimmy Range Photography