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Robert Turnquest wins Atlas Fights' welterweight championship

AMANDA McCOY/SUN HERALDChad Boudoin, left, and Corey Samuels fight during the Atlas Fights featherweight title bout at Brawl at the Ballpark on Saturday, October 24, 2015, at MGM Park in Biloxi. Boudoin defeated Samuels to win the featherweight belt.
AMANDA McCOY/SUN HERALDChad Boudoin, left, and Corey Samuels fight during the Atlas Fights featherweight title bout at Brawl at the Ballpark on Saturday, October 24, 2015, at MGM Park in Biloxi. Boudoin defeated Samuels to win the featherweight belt. SUN HERALD

BILOXI -- Atlas Fights has a new welterweight champion.

Robert Turnquest defeated Rance Jones Jr. at Saturday's "Brawl in the Ballpark" at MGM Park, winning the Atlas Fights' title. Turnquest and Jones went the distance of five rounds and Turnquest was declared the winner in unanimous decision by the judges.

This is the second time the two Pensacola-based fighter have met in the ring in less than a year. They fought at the Golden Nugget Casino and Hotel in March, which was also decided after five rounds by the fight's judges. Jones was declared the winner during their March bout.

Turnquest believed he won the March fight and took to social media to taunt Jones into Saturday's rematch.

Turnquest, while somewhat battered and bruised, was all smiles after the victory.

"I wanted my rematch and I got my rematch," he said. "It was a tough fight. Jones is a strong guy. Now we are 1-1, so we have to do least one more time."

The decision by the judges didn't sit well with some members of Jones' corner as they became involved in a brief, heated argument with Glenn Mattina Jr., of Atlas Fights MMA.

The fight was the first of its kind to take place in MGM Park, the home of the Biloxi Shuckers. Tim Bennett of Overtime Sports said he hopes to bring more MMA events to the stadium.

"We are very pleased with the turnout," Bennett said. "We had more people than we expected. The outside environment was great for the fight. We will definitely being do this again next fall and we will hopefully have another MMA before then."

In the bantamweight fight, defending champion Aaron "Yoda" Williams of Ocean Springs lost to Reynaldo Duarte. The fight was called 3:45 into the fourth round.

Another local fighter on the card also didn't fare too well in the ballpark brawl. Will Cruthirds of Gulfport lost to Matt McCook of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida after the judges called the fight midway through round three.

Cruthirds and Williams both train at Alan Belcher MMA Club in D'Iberville.

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