Invicta FC returned to the cage tonight for their fourth venture into all-women’s MMA at the Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Missouri. While the event was originally expected to serve as the promotion’s PPV debut, problems with their video provider’s pay server lead Invicta to change the card to a free offering. Despite this difficulty, the card still delivered plenty of action. In the main event, Carla Esparza defeated a very game Bec Hyatt to become the promotion’s first ever strawweight champion.
In other action, Alexis Davis, Leslie Smith, Sarah D’Alelio, Ediane Gomes, and Joanne Calderwood notched victories on the main card.
Esparza Outlasts Hyatt to win Inaugural Invicta FC Strawweight Title
Carla Esparza was pushed to the limit by the Australian Bec Hyatt but held on to win the Invicta FC strawweight crown in tonight’s main event. The story of this fight was the larger Hyatt controlling the striking game by overpowering Esparza, but the Aussie was unable to stop the takedowns and ground game of “The Cookie Monster.” Esparza utilized her wrestling background to frustrate Hyatt all evening with several submission attempts and ground-and-pound.
Hyatt would put a scare into Esparza late however, as Hyatt would charge in with only ten seconds left and rock the wrestler only moments before the bell rang. The Aussie fighter’s performance is even more impressive since it happened on only eight days notice.
Davis Puts Baszler to Sleep
Alexis Davis wanted to avenge an earlier career loss to Shayna Baszler tonight in KC and she certainly did that. The Caesar Gracie trained fighter cracked Baszler with vicious leg kicks throughout the evening and held her own on the ground. Davis would stun Baszler in the third round and quickly pounced to get the a technical submission via rear-naked choke. The win elevates the Strikeforce vet to 4-1 since 2011.
Smith Recovers to Defeat an Exhausted Pennington
Raquel Pennington and Leslie Smith came into tonight as two women who were formerly friends and now enemies. Pennington would control the first round of the fight with dominant wrestling and ground strikes. Smith would not back down however and roared back in the second and third rounds with a large volume of punches mixed with a quick pace that simply exhausted Pennington. The victory gives Smith two straight victories in Invicta.
D’Alelio covers Nunes
Sarah D’Alelio got back on track with a win over Strikeforce veteran Amanda Nunes. D’Alelio controlled the fight with superior wrestling and ground control. The attack prevented Nunes from ever getting much offense it going throughout the fight. D’Alelio is now 3-1 since dropping consecutive fights Julie Kedzie and UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey.
Gomes Pounds Yamanaka
American Top Team’s Ediane Gomes defeated Hiroko Yamanaka on Saturday night in Kansas City. Gomes utilized her improving striking game to land multiple power shots on her Japanese opponent though out the fight. Yamanaka would try for several guillotine chokes but the BJJ black belt was prepared for everything she brought to the table. Gomes, whose only losses are to UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey and Amanda Nunes, has now won three straight in the cage.
Calderwood Batters Von Plettenberg
Joanne Calderwood put on a terrific display of Muay Thai tonight against Livia von Plettenberg. Calderwood battered her opponent with a variety of Muay Thai attacks that left her opponent with a massive hematoma on her forehead. The win runs the talented strawweight prospect’s record to 5-0.
Main Card Results
- Inaugural Strawweight Title: Carla Esparza def. Bec Hyatt via unanimous decision via unanimous decision (50-45,50-45,50-45)
- Alexis Davis def. Shayna Baszler via technical submission (rear-naked choke) at 0:58 of Round 3
- Leslie Smith def. Raquel Pennington via unanimous decision (29-28,29-28,29-28)
- Sarah D’Alelio def. Amanda Nunes via unanimous decision (30-26,30-26,30-26)
- Ediane Gomes def. Hiroko Yamanaka via unanimous decision (30-27,29-28,29-28)
- Joanne Calderwood def. Livia von Plettenberg via unanimous decision (30-26,30-27,30-27)