-Brian Ebersole vs. John Howard
Round 1: In the battle between the crafty veteran and the hard-hitting veteran, it was all about whose will could be imposed first. In the opening round, Ebersole – the crafty one – found success by taking Howard down and tying him in knots. For his part, Howard did well dodging any potential finishes, but by the end of the frame, the big question mark hanging over him was what, if anything, he’d have to beat his opponent back with.
Round 2: The answer to that question came early, as Howard began throwing punches in bunches and kicks to Ebersole’s thighs that wobbled him. Then the Massachusetts native switched gears and took him down, and for almost the duration, Howard was on Ebersole’s back, forcing him to defend against chokes.
Round 3: Whatever Howard had in the gas tank was pretty much gone by the final round, permitting only brief flurries while Ebersole picked at him from a distance. The hard leg-kicks were still there, but they were fewer and far between, and meant little without the punches to follow up. Time ran out with Ebersole scoring ever so slightly more on the feet.
Result: Brian Ebersole def. John Howard via Split Decision