Alexander gets to 3-0 with KO

Published 9:13 pm Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thomaston’s Daniel Alexander moved his record inside the cage to 3-0 Thanksgiving night when he knocked out Biloxi, Miss.’ Mike Sanford 12 seconds into the the second round.

Belcher, who also entered the Rock ‘n the Cage 2 event at Biloxi’s Hard Rock Hotel and Casino with a 2-0 record, is the lead Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor at Alan Belcher’s Remix MMA school in Biloxi. Given his opponent’s proficiency in grappling and submission techniques, Alexander and trainers Jay and Ronda Russell surmised that Sanford would go for the early tap out.

“we were working on Jiu-Jitsu defense,” Alexander said of his preparation heading into the fight.

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After assessing his opponent for the event, Alexander knew what strategy would best serve him during the fight.

“We wanted to use a whole lot of boxing, tried not to use a whole lot of kicks because he could sweep me,” Alexander sad.

The approach fed right into Alexander’s background and proved to win him the fight in the second round.

Fighting in the 145-pound classification, Alexander found himself on the defensive for much of the first round as Sanford utilized a variety of headlocks and leg scissors. The larger Alexander withstood the attempts and allowed his opponent to utilize his energy. Despite suffering a laceration above his left eye early in the round, Alexander withstood the grappler’s assaults long enough to turn his defense into offense late in the period.

Alexander got himself vertical late in round, flipping Sanford from a mounted position. When Sanford again attempted to utilize his legs by catching Alexander in a body scissor, the Thomaston product lifted his opponent off the mat and slammed him back down with authority. The exchange changed the flow of the first round and enabled Alexander to get to the break without sustaining any further damage.

“He was going to put a lot in the first round,” Alexander said. “My plan was to just try to avoid the submissions in the first round and let him tire himself out, then come out strong in the second round.”

Alexander’s received reinforcement for that strategy in between rounds when Ronda cleaned the cut above his eye and urged him to make his move quickly so as to avoid any further damage to the area.

Alexander came out firing in the second round, catching Sanford with a pair of overhand rights followed by a left hand jab. The third overhand right of the round sent Sanford to the mat. Alexander landed two more blows from a mounted position before the referee separated the fighters. Sanford pushed his way back to his feet on instinct and immediately collapsed, handing Alexander the win.

The display drew attention from a bevy of promoters in attendance as Alexander now holds no shortage offers to fight again. But exactly when and where the will take place has to be determined.

Alexander, who intends to transfer from Alabama Southern Community College to the University of South Alabama in the fall, hopes to have his next fight in the 155-pound weight class, a move that will take months of training.

“I just turned 20 years old. I’m still growing and it’s harder to cut the weight. I don’t want to stunt my growth. I want to get as big as I can,” Alexander said of a transition that will take some time to complete. “I’d say at least six months. Then I’m going to have to get my cardio back. I think it will be a good move. I think I will be more comfortable at that weight class.”