Amateur fighters rumble tonight

Published 11:38 am Thursday, September 22, 2011

A group of hungry young mixed martial arts fighters will get a chance to show their stuff in front of one of the sport’s legends tonight at Vicksburg Auditorium.

An appearance by Tito Ortiz will highlight “Punishment at the Auditorium,” an eight-bout MMA card that begins at 7 p.m. The card will feature amateur fighters from Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, and portions of it will be featured on an upcoming episode of the MTV reality show “Caged.”

Ortiz, who will do a meet-and-greet when the Auditorium doors open at 6, will not be fighting. Ortiz has gone 16-9 and held the UFC light heavyweight championship for 31⁄2 years during a career that began in 1997.

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The card’s co-main event will feature 145-pounders Tony Kelly (12-4) vs. David Able (10-1) and Jackson resident Jason Cefaleu (5-2) vs. Edward Rossino (5-2), both 125-pounders.

Promoter Will Broyles called Cefaleu one of the better amateur fighters in the region.

“He’s the up and coming Mississippi talent. He’s been recruited for this reality show,” Broyles said. “This is a good chance for all of these guys to be seen on TV and fight in front of Tito Ortiz. They’re amateur fighters, but they’re trying to prove themselves and get professional contracts.”

Tickets to the event are $30 at the door for adults, or $15 for children and are also available at Fightgoers can use the promotional code “Tito” on the website to get half off admission.