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Bessette, Quinn and Diekman among winners in Bellator 98 pre-lims
Ryan Quinn (black trunks) and Bryan Van Artsdalen get tangled up during Bellator 98 on September 7 at Mohegan Sun.
Photo by Nicola Faraone
By Brian Woodman Jr.

(Editor’s note: most of the statistics for the fighters in this article were based on information provided by Bellator)Editor’s note: most of the statistics for the fighters in this article were based on information provided by Bellator)

   Three Connecticut-based fighters and a former resident were among those featured on the preliminary card for Bellator 98, which was held on September 7 at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville.
   Matt Bessette (12-4), who trains at Underdog BJJ in Hartford, was among the victors that evening, knocking out Nick Piedmont (8-4) of Chula Vista, California during the first round of a featherweight bout.
“I love fighting for Bellator,” said Bessette afterward. “They’re so professional and treat you like a king. I know a lot of their workers by name and they know me. I’m not just dollar signs.”
   He expressed gratification with that evening’s bout, which was the second of the evening.
   “My power shows its head in training but I wasn’t able to showcase it in a fight until last night, which was frustrating considering that I was being told I had no power.”
   During the first fight of the evening, Rico Disciullo who was making his professional debut, knocked out Glenn Allair (3-2) in the first round of a bantamweight fight.
   Former Danbury resident Ryan Quinn (8-4-1, according to his Facebook page), who trains with American Top Team submitted Bryan Van Artsdalen (8-8) in the first round of a lightweight fight with an arm triangle choke.
   Andrew Calandrelli of New Haven was scheduled to be Quinn’s original opponent but was pulled from the card due to medical issues. 
   “The replacement was kind of stressful but it wasn’t any easier on him either so I just figured I would stick to what I’m good at,” said Quinn, who is now 5-0 in his fights with Bellator. “We can develop a game plan from there. Everything worked great.”
   Groton resident Josh Diekman (13-5), who trains in Rhode Island at Tim Burill BJJ and Triforce MMA, knocked out Southington native Parker Porter (5-4) about four minutes into the first round of a heavyweight bout. Diekman, who stated before the fight that he preferred using “my heavy hands,” exchanged punches and kicks with Porter until referee Dan Miragliotta waved the fight off.
   The preliminaries ended with a light heavyweight bout between Jeff Nader (5-5) of Nashua, New Hampshire and Mike Mucitelli (5-0) of Syracuse, New York. The fight ended in a draw when Mucitelli accidentally poked Nader in the eye, prompting a stoppage.
   See our blog for more details of the event.