A Cedar Rapids Coach Fought in the UFC This Weekend (and Won)
Saturday night pretty much everyone from Hard Drive Performance Center in Cedar Rapids was glued to a TV screen. Our kickboxing coach Erik Koch stepped into the octagon for UFC 240 and he came out victorious!
Weighing in at 171 pounds, 30-year-old Erik made his welterweight debut against former U.S. Marine Kyle Stewart. The fight took place at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Canada, with Koch fighting in the early prelims which kicked off at 6 p.m. After three full rounds, he defeated Stewart via a unanimous decision. I was exhausted just watching it!
Let me just say, watching the person who teaches me kickboxing on a weekly basis fight on a professional level was just... incredible. Erik and his brother Keoni, our Jiu-Jitsu coach/Erik's corner, lost their dad a year ago, and he was Erik's "biggest mentor." This wasn't Erik's first UFC fight, but it was his first in the welterweight division, and that's all thanks to his dad. According to MMA Junkie, "his father always encouraged him to move up to a higher division, and now he’s finally listened." After being announced as the winner, Erik dropped to his knees to talk to his "pops," which had me all types of emotional. Here are some photos of Erik's busy weekend and his post-fight interview:
I feel so honored to be taught by such an incredible talent at such an incredible gym! Congratulations to Erik, we're already looking forward to your next fight!