UFC Atlantic City at Boardwalk Hall on April 21, 2018, will give Toms River native Frankie Edgar the opportunity to cross something off his bucket list. Steve Feitl
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ATLANTIC CITY -- It took 11 years for Frankie Edgar to get back to New Jersey, but the result was the same as the last time he fought in the Garden State.
Edgar defeated Cub Swanson by unanimous decision in the semi-main event of Saturday's UFC Fight Night card at Boardwalk Hall.
"Jersey, I love you baby," Edgar said to the Atlantic City crowd that chanted "Frank-ie Ed-gar" throughout the bout. "I love you. TR, I know you are in the building."
The Toms River native rebounded from a knockout loss in his last bout with a steady performance over Cub Swanson. He pressed the action throughout and connected with combinations.
In his first bout with Swanson, which Edgar also won, "The Answer" had been able to control the action with a dominating ground game. This time he had to do it standing. But while he wasn't scoring the takedowns, he was connecting on the separations.
In the end, all three judges gave all three rounds to the hometown fighter. Edgar last fought in New Jersey at UFC 78 in November 2007.
In other bouts, Justin "Big Pretty" Willis nearly finished Chase Sherman in the first round of their heavyweight throwdown. He dropped Sherman and pounced and delivered a flurry of hammer fists. But Sherman somehow survived and the two big men never delivered that level of exceitement again for the remainder of the bout.
In the end, Willis earned the unanimous decision by scores of 29-28 across the board.
New York's David Branch made short work of a surging Thiago Santos, connecting with a looping right overhand that crumpled Santos. Branch followed up with some hammer fists before it was called off at 2:30 of the very first round.
Branch said Santos was difficult to get at, so the middleweight had game planned on the looping strikes.
"He’s tricky to get to," Branch said. "We had to loop those punches, because he was expecting us to throw them right up the middle. He’s a bruiser. Any time he goes in there, he’s going to go out on his shield or knock you out."