Two fighters from Philadelphia’s famed Fight Factory fight camp have been added to the undercard of EliteXC’s first-ever “Saturday Night Fights” card on CBS television, a source close to the camp has revealed exclusively to FiveOuncesOfPain.com.
The Fight Factory, started by head trainer Stephen Haigh, features both DREAM lightweight Grand Prix competitor Eddie Alvarez and female MMA champion Tara LaRosa. Two of the camp’s up and coming fighters, Zach Makovsky, a former Division I wrestler, and Mike Groves, an aggressive boxer and wrestler, will both be appearing on the undercard in separate fights.
Makovsky has signed on to fight against Andre “Giugeto” Soares of American Top Team in a 140 pound encounter. Soares is 5-1 according to Sherdog.com’s fight finder and is on a four fight win streak. He most recently fought on April 18 for Battle Cage Xtreme in Atlantic City, submitting Josh Spearman with a guillotine choke at 0:19 of round 1.
Prior to the win over Spearman, Soares last fought in September of 2006, submitting Matt McCabe with an armbar at 1:09 of round 1 while competing for the Combat in the Cage promotion.
Makovsky made his professional MMA debut just over a year ago, recording a split decision victory over Leandro Escobar at Extreme Challenge 75 on March 23. He then returned to action this past October on a Combat in the Cage show, where he recorded a unanimous decision victory over Emerson Souza.
Fighting five pounds above his normal competitive weight, Makovsky suffered his first career loss to Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Wilson Reis in a 140 pound catchweight encounter while making his ShoXC debut this past January in Atlantic City. In spite of the loss, he is still regarded as one of the top bantamweight prospects in the country.
Prior to MMA, Makovsky wrestled for four years at Drexel University in Philadelphia, where he graduated 18th on the all-time win list with 72 collegiate victories. Makovsky has maintained his ties to Drexel, as he currently serves as the assistant strength and conditioning coach for the wrestling team.
Groves, who has a strong local following in Philadelphia, made his pro debut this past October at a Combat in the Cage show, suffering a second round TKO at the hands of Pat McGreal.
He has signed on to fight lightweight fighter Joe Sampieri, the Muay Thai coach for Renzo Gracie’s Jiu-Jitsu Academy in New York City. Despite his strong striking background, Sampieri is 0-2 in his MMA career according to both Sherdog.com’s Fight Finder and Full Contact Fighter’s database. Both losses took place in the IFL, with Sampieri suffering a unanimous decision loss last April to the promotion’s current lightweight champion, Ryan Schultz. He returned to the IFL ring in August, submitting to a rear naked choke by Jason Palacios at 3:21 of round 1.
FiveOuncesOfPain.com was the first news outlet to report the additions of Matt Makowski vs. Nick Serra and Wilson Reis vs. Justin Robbins to EliteXC’s undercard for May 31. Both of those fights along with the Groves vs. Sampieri and Makovsky vs. Soares matchups will be broadcast free of charge on ProElite.com. Seven undercard fights in all are scheduled to be streamed.
Two other fighters expected to appear on the undercard in separate matchups include former Pittsburgh Steelers All-Pro offensive tackle Carlton Haselrig and Team Ground Control fighter James “Binky” Jones.
Photo courtesy of Zack Lynch of MMA Photography.