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Another fight, another win for Arcata’s Cass Bell.

On Saturday night at the SAP Center in San Jose, the local MMA star won for the third time in three professional fights at Bellator 220, getting the better of Peter Ishiguro with a knockout at the 2:59 mark of the second round.

“It went according to plan,” Bell’s trainer John “Juan” Thompson said.

Ishiguro, a wrestling specialist, brought Bell to ground at the 2:30 mark of the second round, but the Institute of Combat fighter quickly got back to his feet and immediately caught his opponent with a knee to the head, before ending the contest with a flurry of punches.

The fight was close through the opening round, before Bell began to use his length to frustrate his opponent and take control.

“Cass had a slow start,” Thompson said. “For whatever reason, he was giving the guy too much respect.

“It was back and forth and pretty competitive for the first round, and I made some adjustments to his footwork and game plan, and he went out and executed. He started hitting the guy with some shots.”

As usual, Bell had plenty of support on hand for what was his third fight at the arena.

“There were a lot of people,” Thompson said. “As soon as he came out, the whole place went wild.” 

Bell also came through the fight without any injuries.

“He had a couple of bumps and bruises, but he was happy,” Thompson said. “He didn’t take any damage.”

And the head trainer at the Institute of Combat in Arcata says his top fighter will be back in action very soon.

“Yes, definitely within the next handful of months,” Thompson said. “He’s not going to get much time to relax. We’re going back to work on Monday morning.”

The night didn’t go entirely according to plan, and for the third time in his three Bellator fights there was a problem with his fight song, which again failed to play on his way to the cage.

“Maybe fourth time will be the charm,” Thompson joked.

The bout was a catchweight fight at 140 pounds, with Bell a bantamweight (135) and Ishiguro a featherweight (145).


Ray Hamill writes at, where you can read lots more about sports in Humboldt County.