New York, NY (Nov. 4, 2010) – An already stacked STRIKEFORCE Challengers card just got that much stronger with the announcement that Dream World Champion Marius “The Whitemare” Zaromskis will take on battle-tested Waachiim Spiritwolf on Friday, Nov. 19, at Jackson Convention Complex in Jackson, Miss., LIVE on SHOWTIME® at 11 p.m. ET/PT, (delayed on the West Coast).
The featured welterweight (170 pounds) televised fight will replace the bout in which Ryan Couture could not fight due to a lingering staph infection. The Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fight card presented by Rockstar Energy Drink will mark STRIKEFORCE’s initial foray into the state of Mississippi.
Both fighters are coming off losses – Zaromskis (13-5) to Brazil’s Evangelista Cyborg on June 16 at STRIKEFORCE LIVE in Los Angeles and Spiritwolf (8-7-1) to Billy Evangelista at a Challengers event in Fresno, Calif. on Oct. 22 – and are eager to return to the win column.
The highly explosive, 30-year-old Zaromskis, who hails from Siauliai, Lithuania, has never shied away from taking on the sport’s best as he fell to Nick Diaz on Jan. 30, 2010, in Sunrise, Fla. Prior to that loss, Zaromskis had won three consecutive fights, all by way of head kick in the first round.
Zaromskis won the DREAM 2009 Welterweight Grand Prix and became the Japanese promotion’s inaugural Welterweight Champion by defeating Seichi Ikemoto at Dream.8. He conquered both Hayato “Mach” Sakurai and Jason High at Dream.10.
Zaromskis’ first love was karate as a child before switching to kickboxing. As an adult, Zaromskis moved to London to train with the London Shootfighters Fight Team. Since signing with STRIKEFORCE, Zaromskis has moved to San Jose and currently is training at American Kickboxing Academy (AKA).
Fans will no doubt recall Spiritwolf’s STRIKEFORCE debut on Oct. 22 in Fresno when he fell to the unbeaten, comebacking Billy Evangelista in a highly entertaining slugfest by unanimous decision (30-27 twice and 29-28). Spiritwolf, 34, is a Fresno native now fighting out of Poway in the San Diego area. He is the head instructor of his own gym, Spiritwolf MMA.
He said after the fight he should have won. “I come to fight and that’s what I did tonight,” he said. “It is bad enough I thought I deserved the decision, but to not get a round on those scorecards is ridiculous. Honestly, I feel I got ripped off.”
Spiritwolf has trained with some of MMA’s best, including MMA legends Randy “The Natural” Couture and Dan Henderson.
In the Nov. 19 main event on SHOWTIME, lightweight (155 pounds) star and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Vitor “Shaolin” Ribeiro (20-4) will face Justin “The Silverback” Wilcox (9-3) of Cincinnati. In another televised fight, former University of Tennessee linebacker Ovince St. Preux (7-4), of Knoxville, Tenn. will seek his fifth consecutive conquest inside the distance when he faces Antwain “The Juggernaut” Britt” (11-4) of Virginia Beach, Va., in a light heavyweight (205 pounds) scrap.
Power-punching Jan “Cuddles” Finney (8-8) of Springfield, Ohio, will be opposed by unbeaten Liz “Girl-Rilla” Carmouche (4-0) of San Diego, Calif., in a key women’s match at 135 pounds (welterweight) and Caros “The Future” Fodor (6-2) of Seattle, Wash., will throw down with Derek “The Pretzel” Getzel (2-1) of Andover, Minn., at lightweight (155 pounds).
Doors at Jackson Convention Complex will open at 6:45 p.m. CT. The first non-televised preliminary bout will begin at 7:30 p.m. The first fight on SHOWTIME will begin at 10 p.m.
STRIKEFORCE (www.strikeforce.com ) is a world-class mixed martial arts cage fight promotion which, on Friday, March 10, 2006, made history with its “Shamrock vs. Gracie” event, the first sanctioned mixed martial arts fight card in California state history. The star-studded extravaganza, which pitted legendary champion Frank Shamrock against Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Cesar Gracie at San Jose’s HP Pavilion, played host to a sold-out, record crowd of 18,265. Since 1995, STRIKEFORCE, sanctioned by ISKA, has been the exclusive provider of martial arts programming for ESPN and, after 12 years of success as a leading, world championship kickboxing promotion, the company unveiled its mixed martial arts (MMA) series with “Shamrock vs. Gracie.” In May 2008, West Coast Productions, the parent company of STRIKEFORCE, partnered with Silicon Valley Sports & Entertainment (SVS&E), an entity created in 2000 to oversee all business operation aspects of the San Jose Sharks and HP Pavilion at San Jose. In March 2009, STRIKEFORCE signed a multi-year agreement with SHOWTIME® to stage live events on the premium cable television network. The promotion has since also produced two live, primetime events on the CBS Television Network.