Porter tailor made for Havoc
It's as if Ken Porter was designed to do this.
Porter translated a standout prep wrestling campaign at nearby Hazelwood West to a solid college career on the mat at Meramac and Missouri Baptist. He began boxing in kindergarten, learning under St. Louis pro Steve Young. Pairing his ground attack with his skilled hands and footwork made Porter think long and hard about mixed martial arts after college.
"I saw other wrestlers do it," the 23-year-old said. "And I knew I had that good boxing background."
Porter quickly became one of the top amateurs in the area, racking up wins by the bushel and gathering belts by the arm load.
He suffered a rare loss in his pro debut early 2013 but quickly sprung back to win two-straight, including avenging his first loss. Now he has his first headlining gig as Porter and fellow flyweight Josh Epps. will close the show Saturday as Shamrock FC: Havoc takes over Lumiere Place Casino in downtown St. Louis.
"A lot of dreams are coming true for me," Porter said. "I think Saturday could be a good fight for me. A lot of people think I'm just going to go out and kill (Epps). That's what I plan to do if I do it right."
Porter carries a calm confidence with him. He feels that the rangy Epps will have no solutions to Porter's riddles.
"(Epps) is aggressive, well-rounded, not too great at anything," Porter said. "I need to do what I do best and beat him at every aspect."
Porter has dedicated to training full-time. He hangs his hat at Finney's MMA and just returned from a week in Florida where he trained with the famed Blackzillians.
As a pro, Porter stands at 3-1. During his amateur career Porter posted a reported 48-3 record and a 14-1 kickboxing record.
"I feel real comfortable," Porter said. "There will be some nerves but I know what to expect."
Porter came up with one name when asked who he wants next; "Kendrick Latchmen."
Porter is also flirting with the idea of fighting at 115-pounds once that weight class becomes established.
Also on the main card:
Trevor Ward is a talented 125-pounder who will face Malshon Ball. Ward is a skyscraper in the division at 6-foot- and trains out of a stellar gym in Springfield, IL, Team Warrior Concepts. Ball is an athletic veteran with over 20 fights under his belt.
Finney's wrestler Ryan Sutton looks to get back on track in his fight with Chris Hancock. Sutton has dropped two-straight. Although he has some of the best wrestling skills in the area, Sutton hasn't been able to translate that into W's.
Marc Godeker faces off with Dennis Reed. Godeker will be looking to win his second straight. We profiled Godeker, a former pro wrestler, just a few months back on the eve of his match-up with Ryan Scheeper.
Earlier in the week we looked at fast-rising amateur Aaron Highfill. Highfill will face Tyler Claussen to lead off the main card. Based on their previous fights, this match-up could equal fireworks. Both fighters like to stand and throw, don't blink on this one.
On the nine-fight under card, one fight worthy of note will be Matt Murphy vs. Ben Chesser. The "KO Kid" has shown great athleticism in his recent fights, and always look land the one big shot. Chesser is tough, and likes to take the fight to the ground.
Kain Royer will look to overwhelm Zachary Burcham. If Royer, now training at the Academy of Courage, is allowed to impose his will, it will be a long night for Burcham.
Submission artist Terrance Gant will take on Damon Morstatter. Gant has trained jiu-jitsu under Mike Rogers, Kyle Watson, and now Ezra Lennon. If this fight goes to the ground, Gant will be tough to stop.
Ken Porter vs Josh Epps - Main Event
Trevor Ward vs Malshon Ball
Ryan Sutton vs Chris Hancock
Marc Godeker vs Dennis Reed
Aaron Highfill vs Tyler Claussen
Andrew Prato vs Branden Nehls
Ben Chesser vs Matt Murphy
Kain Royer vs Zachary Burcham
Terrance Gant vs Damon Mortsatter
Jeff Rittenhosue vs Glen Zogg
Dayne Bogard vs Jason Huncovsky
Shaun Scott vs Luke Cantrall
Kris Craig vs Johnathon Graves
Eric Covert vs Clinton Kauble
Brandon Carter vs Joe Fitzpatrick
Shamrock FC: Havoc
Saturday, August 10th
Lumiere Place Casino - St. Louis, MO
Doors @ 6 - Fights @ 7