Area colleges play host to fight nights

For folks who are interested in either helping out a good cause or wanting to see some fight action there are a couple of obvious upcoming choices around the Mid-Ohio Valley to whet your whistle.

In case you haven’t heard, the annual Rumble on the Hill at Glenville State College is set to take place next Saturday with proceeds from the event going to the Pioneer athletic department. Former GSC wide receiver “Wild Wild” Wes Hanson is scheduled to make his professional kickboxing debut. That in and of itself would be worth the price of admission for that event.

A little less than a month from now Ohio Valley University will be the host site for the first Fighting Scots Fight Night. When action gets under way on the evening of Saturday, May 18 inside Alumni Gymnasium, it should turn out to be quite a night. Proceeds from that event, which will feature former toughman champion Billy Cottrill making his debut as a ring announcer, will go to the OVU softball team.

Of course, the key for both the Pioneers and Fighting Scots to help put money into their athletic coffers comes from none other than people like you and me. It’s the folks who take the time to buy a ticket, perhaps a table or even act as a sponsor that determines how successful a show can be.

Wirt County’s Mike Sheppard is actually promoting both events, but is not fighting in either.

“Back when I was first starting (in fighting) Burt Hays was putting on little events and small shows and that’s how I got going,” said Sheppard, who is promoting the OVU card through the Parkersburg Dawghouse. “This is my hometown and my home area.

“It means a lot. I want to do good (as a promoter) and I want people to like it. The main thing is to have good matches. You can’t have bad fights or people will not come back. That’s what I’m known for, putting on good fights at every one of the shows.”

The fight card at Ohio Valley University is far from finalized, but a couple of amateur fighters who should box are locals Preston “Italian Stallion” Wilson – a two-time light heavyweight toughman champion – along with Andrew Tidd and Mike Brown. Tidd, from Ravenswood, was the MOV heavyweight toughman champ.

Also of note, pro boxers expected to be on the card include the likes of Dustin Echard, Joe Paintiff, Warren Browning and Brian Camechis. Nate Hall and Steven Whitehair, both from Parkersburg, are already scheduled to square off against one another.

“It will add a good local little flair,” Sheppard said of the fight which will feature Hall making his pro debut versus the 0-1 Whitehair.

Sheppard also said people should “expect to see a female bout” as he is currently working out the details on that potential fight.

“I just want to get something going so people will have something to look forward to,” Sheppard added. “But, it’s not going to pay for itself.”

Contact Jay Bennett at jbennett@newsandsentinel.com