Hit the Ground Zero
Co-owner: Training center offers 'a little bit of everything'
An interest in boxing brought 14-year-old Seth McCann to Morgantown’s Ground Zero Fighting Systems.
The mixed martial arts training center at Mountaineer Mall offers classes in boxing, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, muay thai and combatives.
“We do a little bit of everything,” co-owner and boxing coach Patrick McLaughlin said.
McCann, of Greensboro, Pa., has competed in two fights since he began training at Ground Zero, nearly a year ago. He lost the first bout by decision, but won the second by technical knockout in the second round.
“It’s fun,” McCann said. “It’s a good way to challenge myself and build confidence.”
McLaughlin said Ground Zero aims to serve clients of all ages and skill levels.
“We have people that are here just for fitness, and then we have up to the highest level of competition — like Adriano [Ramirez], getting ready to turn professional with over 80 amateur fights.”
Ramirez’s record is 70-11, with 53 knockouts.
Ground Zero also acts as a sponsor to the WVU boxing team — which McLaughlin helped found in 2006 — by offering training opportunities.
But clients don’t have to be trained fighters.
“We try to make anyone feel comfortable,” McLaughlin said. “A beginner can walk in and join this [boxing] class, but the most advanced person is going to get a good workout, too.”
The cost varies, depending on how often a client wants to train. McLaughlin said it costs about $100 a month to train every day of the week.
Ground Zero has seen growth in its amateur boxing programs for youth and adults, McLaughlin said, and Ground Zero’s jiu-jitsu competitors have been state champions.
“We’re just going to keep growing,” McLaughlin said.