Atlantic City’s Cesar Balmaceda will make the first defense of his Cage Fury Fighting Championships lightweight title May 17 at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City.

Balmaceda (6-0), 23, will defend his 155-pound title against an opponent to be named in the main event of CFFC 74 at Hard Rock Live at Etess Arena.

The 2013 Atlantic City High School graduate won the CFFC interim title in December with a first-round TKO over Chicago’s Damian Norris.

He became the third local MMA fighter to win a regional championship. Mays Landing’s Jeff Lentz won bantamweight belts for Ring of Combat and Cage Fury. Millville’s Tim Williams is the former CFFC middleweight champion.

Balmaceda’s fight will be one of three title bouts on the May 17 card. CFFC featherweight champion Pat Sabatini (10-2), of Bristol, Pennsylvania, and bantamweight champ Alexander Keshtov (9-0), of Russia, will be in action against opponents to be named.

Tickets range from $59.25 to $179.25 and are available through and the Hard Rock Live at Etess Arena Box Office. The bouts will also be shown on UFC Fight Pass.

Boxing returns to A.C.

Boxing makes its 2019 debut in Atlantic City on Saturday night, when Millville-based Rising Star Promotions holds a card at Showboat hotel.

Pleasantville’s Anthony Young (19-2, 6 KOs) will take on Union City’s Juan Rodriguez Jr. (13-5, 6 KOs) for the vacant New Jersey State welterweight title. Millville’s Thomas LaManna held the belt before moving up to junior-middleweight. LaManna is currently ranked 12th by the World Boxing Organization.

Atlantic City super-middleweight Gabriel Pham (9-1, 4 KOs) will seek his fourth straight victory against Colombia’s Ronald Montes (18-11, 16 KOs). State heavyweight champion Quian Davis (5-0-2, 2 KOs) of Mays Landing is scheduled to be on the undercard in a non-title bout.

In the main event, Paulsboro heavyweight Chazz Witherspoon (37-3, 28 KOs) will meet Panama’s Santander Silgado (28-6, 22 KOs).

Tickets range from $55 to $125 and are available through and at the door on Saturday.

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