Phoenix Rising 1 Will Crown New Strawweight Champion

Kansas City, Mo. – The stakes have been raised for the first installment of the Invicta Fighting Championships Phoenix Rising Series.

The promotion’s first one-night, eight-woman tournament will crown a new 115-pound champion as Brazilian Virna Jandiroba has vacated the strawweight title to sign with the UFC.

In addition to the new prize awaiting the night’s winner, the quarterfinal match-ups — determined by random draw — have been revealed.

Former title challenger MIZUKI (13-5) will take on with wrestling stalwart Sharon Jacobson (5-4), Brazilian contender Janaisa Morandin (10-2) meets California’s Brianna Van Buren (5-2), UFC veterans square off as Danielle Taylor (10-4) clashes with Juliana Lima (9-5), and Hawaii’s Kailin Curran (4-6) faces Iceland’s Sunna Davíðsdóttir (3-0).

Joining the tournament bouts will be one non-tournament bout and two tournament reserve match-ups.

In the non-tournament fight, 19-year-old Kay Hansen (4-2) collides with promotional newcomer Magdaléna Šormová (7-1) of the Czech Republic. The bout will serve as the night’s co-main event between the tournament semifinals and championship headliner.

The two tournament reserve bouts will be one-round affairs and be considered exhibition fights. However, should any of the fighters be tabbed as injury replacements in the tournament, any subsequent fights will count on the fighter’s professional record. In the first reserve match-up, former atomweight title challenger Amber Brown (7-5) returns to 115 pounds to face off with India’s Manjit Kolekar (11-2). The other pairing features Invicta newcomers as Canada’s Alyssa “Pumpkin Spice” Krahn (5-2) meets Texas fighter Itzel Esquivel (4-2).

Finally, joining play-by-play announcer Laura Sanko and color analyst Jimmy Smith, the third member of the Phoenix Rising broadcast team will be Taryn Tempel, who will handle in-cage interviews for the event.

Phoenix Rising 1 takes place from Kansas City’s Memorial Hall on Friday, May 3. The event streams exclusively on UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. CT. Tickets to the event are on sale now through Eventbrite.

TBD vs. TBD – strawweight tournament final
Kay Hansen (4-2) vs. Magdaléna Šormová (7-1)
TBD vs. TBD – strawweight tournament semifinal
TBD vs. TBD – strawweight tournament semifinal
Amber Brown (7-5) vs. Manjit Kolekar (11-2) – strawweight tournament reserve bout
MIZUKI (13-5) vs. Sharon Jacobson (5-4) – strawweight tournament quarterfinal
Janaisa Morandin (10-2) vs. Brianna Van Buren (5-2) – strawweight tournament quarterfinal
Danielle Taylor (10-4) vs. Juliana Lima (9-5) – strawweight tournament quarterfinal
Kailin Curran (4-6) vs. Sunna Davidsdottir (3-0) – strawweight tournament quarterfinal
Alyssa Krahn (5-2) vs. Itzel Esquivel (4-2) – strawweight tournament reserve bout


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Invicta FC Reveals the Phoenix Rising Series

Kansas City, Mo. – Invicta Fighting Championships is starting a new chapter.

Today, the world’s most decorated fighting promotion for women revealed the Phoenix Rising Series; a one-night, eight-woman tournament format that brings the sport of MMA back to its roots.

The single-elimination tournament will feature one-round fights in the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds, with the tournament final being a three-round affair to determine the tournament champion.

The eight tournament participants will be matched up during a random draw prior to the event.

The quarterfinal fighters will have incentive to finish their fights for multiple reasons. First, each finish will earn the winning fighter a monetary bonus, but more importantly, the fastest finisher in the quarterfinal round will have the luxury of picking their opponent for the semifinals based on the remaining three combatants. If there are no finishes in the quarterfinals, the semifinal match-ups will again be determined by random draw.

The first event of the Phoenix Rising Series will take place from Kansas City’s Memorial Hall on Friday, May 3 and stream exclusively on UFC Fight Pass. The inaugural tournament will take place in the strawweight division and the field of eight fighters features numerous title challengers and UFC veterans.

Japan’s MIZUKI (13-5) and Brazil’s Janaisa Morandin (10-2) have previously challenged for Invicta gold and will be out prove they are ready for another shot at the title. MIZUKI was last in the cage at Invicta FC 32, topping UFC veteran Viviane Pereira. Morandin is coming off a title challenge against Virna Jandiroba in September.

They are joined by UFC veterans Danielle Taylor (10-4), Juliana Lima (9-5) and Kailin Curran (4-6). Taylor’s first fight under the Invicta banner came in December, where she defeated Montserrat Ruiz. Lima returns to the promotion for the first time since Invicta FC 5 in 2013. Hawaii’s Curran will be making her Invicta debut.

Rounding out the participants will be Invicta veterans Brianna van Buren (5-2), Sharon Jacobson (5-4) and Sunna Davidsdottir (3-0). Van Buren dispatched of UFC veteran Jamie Moyle in her most recent appearance. Jacobson has been a staple of the Invicta cage, winning multiple post-fight bonuses for her aggressive wrestling style. Finally, Iceland’s Davidsdottir enters the tournament with an undefeated record.

The Phoenix Rising Series will also feature a new look for the broadcast team. Invicta FC post-fight correspondent and former Invicta fighter Laura Sanko will become the first woman to call play-by-play for a major promotion. Joining Sanko on the call will be veteran cageside analyst Jimmy Smith, who has called fights for many of the sport’s biggest promotions.

A tournament reserve match-up, as well as one, non-tournament bout—also in the 115-pound division—will be added to the fight card in the coming weeks.

Phoenix Rising Series 
MIZUKI (13-5)
Janaisa Morandin (10-2)
Danielle Taylor (10-4)
Juliana Lima (9-5)
Kailin Curran (4-6)
Brianna van Buren (5-2)
Sharon Jacobson (5-4)
Sunna Davidsdottir (3-0)


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Invicta FC 34 Results: Porto Tops Gonzalez, Captures Vacant Flyweight Title

Kansas City, Kan. — On Friday, Feb. 15, Invicta Fighting Championships hosted Invicta FC 34: Porto vs. Gonzalez from the Memorial Hall. The night’s first three bouts streamed live on Facebook and UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. CT, with the remainder of the event airing exclusively on UFC Fight Pass.

Vanessa Porto is now the Invicta FC flyweight champion after defeating Pearl Gonzalez by technical decision. The first round saw Gonzalez use her length to kick. Porto countered with punches, leading to a takedown. Gonzalez worked back to her feet, but ate three right hands in the process. Porto again took the fight to the ground. Round two featured a variety of kicks from both fighters until Porto again showcased her strength, picking up Gonzalez and slamming her to the mat. She passed to the mount and slapped on an arm-triangle choke. Gonzalez waited it out and eventually returned to her feet before the round came to an end. It was more kicks from both fighters early in round three, but Porto initiated the clinch and pinned Gonzalez to the cage. She scooped up a single and put Gonzalez on her back. Porto passed to side control where she remained until the round concluded. Porto controlled the range early in round four, but Gonzalez inadvertently poked her in the left eye to pause the action. The doctors came in to check on the Brazilian, but there was a cut to her eyelid that forced the fight to be waved off. That sent the fight to the scorecards, where Porto was ahead from all three judges at cageside.

Mexico’s Karina Rodriguez engaged in a three-round war with UFC veteran Milana Dudieva, punching her ticket to the flyweight tournament final with a split-decision victory. Rodriguez was crisp with her striking early, peppering Dudieva with kicks. Dudieva changed the tides with a well-timed takedown and a barrage of punches from top position. Late in the round, Dudieva rocked Rodriguez with a right hand as the bell sounded. The second round began similarly, with Dudieva scoring a takedown. Rodriguez was able to work back to her feet and she pushed the pace. She came forward hard, nearly overwhelming Dudieva late in the round with punches. The last stanza was razor-close as both fighters looked for openings. The judges were called upon to decide the result and two of the three rewarded Rodriguez for her efforts.

The first half of the flyweight contender tournament pitted UFC veteran and former strawweight title challenger DeAnna Bennett against rising prospect Miranda Maverick. Maverick scored early with leg kicks. Bennett marched forward, changing levels and putting Maverick on her back with a double-leg takedown. Maverick locked up her guard, but Bennett scored with right hands. In round two, the pair traded positions in the clinch, but again, it was Bennett’s double-leg takedown that helped her gain an advantageous position. She was able to move to Maverick’s back and threaten with a rear-naked choke, but the Missouri fighter defended and escaped. The final frame saw Maverick push the action. She gained the clinch, only to have Bennett reverse and position and work for a single. Maverick threw knees and short elbows, but it wasn’t enough, as Bennett claimed the decision and the first spot in the flyweight tournament final.

In the flyweight tournament reserve bout, Tracy Cortez used her solid wrestling and submission defense to edge grappler Erin Blanchfield by split decision. Cortez threw with reckless abandon early, before changing levels and taking Blanchfield to the ground. Blanchfield latched onto Cortez’s right arm, looking for an armbar. Cortez was able to defend, but Blanchfield held the position until the end of the round, absorbing short punches and knees from Cortez. The second frame was a back-and-forth affair, with Cortez getting the better of the clinch work. Blanchfield had a strong third round, securing a takedown and attacking with submissions. Cortez survived a deep arm-triangle choke attempt, returning to the feet in the fight’s final minute. When the judges were called upon, it was Cortez who walked away victorious.

Flyweights Victoria Leonardo and Jamie Milanowski put on a show for the brief time they were in the cage. Milanowski quickly dragged Leonardo to the ground, but Leonardo looked for an armbar and got back to her feet. She then put Milanowki on her back and dropped heavy ground and pound. The fight returned to the feet briefly and Milanowski again looked to gain top position. Leonardo stuffed a head-and-arm throw and took the back of the newcomer. She locked onto a rear-naked choke, forcing Milanowski to tap midway through the first round.

Featherweight Courtney King picked up her first win in the Invicta cage, stopping fellow Coloradan Holli Logan by second-round submission. Logan scored with repeated counter right hands in the opening stanza, as King pressed forward. King eventually earned the clinch and brought the fight to the ground with a trip takedown. In the second frame, King flurried hard to get the clinch. This time, however, it was Logan who looked for a trip. King reversed the position and landed on top, locking in a D’arce choke. Logan was able to defend, but gave up the mount. King rained punches and forced Logan to give up her back. Once there, King attacked the neck and coerced a tap by rear-naked choke.

The night’s action kicked off with a flyweight match-up between newcomers Caitlin Sammons and Christina Ricker. Sammons used her teep kick to gauge range, before scoring with a counter uppercut. She then took Ricker to the mat and control her from the back, but trapping Ricker’s left arm. Late in the first round, Sammons looked for an armbar, but Ricker was able to survive the round. In round two, Sammons hurt Ricker with a kick to the body and followed her to the ground. Sammons unleashed a series of punches and elbows that forced the referee to halt the bout and save Ricker from further damage.

OFFICIAL RESULTS
Vanessa Porto def. Pearl Gonzalez by unanimous technical decision (40-36, 39-37, 39-37). Round 4, 2:34 – for flyweight title
Karina Rodriguez def. Milana Dudieva by split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28) – flyweight tournament semifinal
DeAnna Bennett def. Miranda Maverick by unanimous decision (29-28 x3) – flyweight tournament semifinal
Tracy Cortez def. Erin Blanchfield by split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
Victoria Leonardo def. Jamie Milanowski by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 1, 2:45
Courtney King def. Holli Logan by submission (rear-naked choke). Round 2, 4:46
Caitlin Sammons def. Christina Ricker by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 3:02


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Invicta FC 34: Porto vs. Gonzalez Official Weigh-in Results

Kansas City, Kan. — On Thursday, Feb. 14, Invicta Fighting Championships hosted the weigh-ins for Invicta FC 34: Porto vs. Gonzalez. The event takes place from from Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan., on Friday, Feb. 15, with the entire card streaming live on UFC Fight Pass beginning at 7 p.m. CT. The night’s first three bouts will also stream live and free on Facebook.

In the night’s main event, the vacant flyweight title will be on the line between Brazilian veteran Vanessa Porto (20-8) and surging contender Pearl Gonzalez (9-3).

Also on the card, a four-woman flyweight tournament will kick off to determine the next No. 1 contender. On one side of the bracket, UFC veteran Milana Dudieva (12-7) takes on Mexico’s Karina Rodriguez (6-3). In the other half of the ladder, UFC veteran and former Invicta FC strawweight title challenger DeAnna Bennett (9-4-1) meets Missouri’s Miranda Maverick (4-1).

Below are the results of the event’s weigh-ins.

Flyweight Title: Vanessa Porto (124.7) vs. Pearl Gonzalez (124)
Flyweight Tournament Semifinal: Milana Dudieva (126) vs. Karina Rodriguez (125.4)
Flyweight Tournament Semifinal: DeAnna Bennett (126) vs. Miranda Maverick (125.4)
Flyweight:  Tracy Cortez (126) vs. Erin Blanchfield (125.5)
Featherweight: Helena Kolesnyk (156.3)* vs. Faith McMah (145.7)
Flyweight: Victoria Leonardo (125.7) vs. Jamie Milanowski (125.4)
Featherweight: Courtney King (145.4) vs. Holli Logan (149.9)#
Flyweight: Caitlin Sammons (124) vs. Christina Ricker (125.5)

* – The fight between Kolesnyk and McMah has been removed from the card, after Kolesnyk missed weight

# – Logan was fined 25 percent of her fight purse for missing weight


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Three Additional Bouts Complete Invicta FC 34 Fight Card

Kansas City, Mo. — The fight card for Invicta Fighting Championships 34 is now complete.

The upcoming flyweight tournament has undergone some changes and the previously announced lineup will be joined by three additional bouts.

Undefeated Brogan Walker-Sanchez (6-0) has been forced out of the flyweight tournament and Mexico’s Karina Rodriguez (6-3) will move from the reserve bout to take on UFC veteran Milana Dudieva (12-7) in the semifinals.

Rodriguez’s original opponent, Tracy Cortez (4-1), will now clash with undefeated New Yorker Erin Blanchfield (3-0). Blanchfield is fresh off a decision victory over Kay Hansen at Invicta FC 32 in November.

In the flyweight division, Invicta veteran Victoria Leonardo (3-1) welcomes Alabama’s Jamie Milanowski (2-2) to the promotion. Louisiana’s Leonardo picked up her third career win in October, scoring a second-round submission win over Monica Medina. Both of Milanowski’s victories have come via armbar and she has shared the cage with Invicta veteran Cheri Muraski and former UFC champion Nicco Montaño.

Also joining the card will be a pair of Colorado featherweights as Courtney King (1-1) meets Holli Logan (1-0-1). King battled Yaya Rincón in her promotional debut at Invicta FC 25 in 2017, while Salazar fought to a draw with Audrey Wolfe at Invicta FC 31.

Finally, a pair of flyweight newcomers will kick off the night’s action as Florida’s Caitlin Sammons (0-0) makes her professional debut against Tennessee’s Christina Ricker (1-1).

Invicta FC 34 takes place Friday, Feb. 15, from Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan. The event is headlined by a flyweight title bout between Brazilian veteran Vanessa Porto (20-8) and surging contender Pearl Gonzalez (9-3). The event will stream live on UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. CT.

The complete Invicta FC 34 fight card can be found below:

Flyweight Title: Vanessa Porto (20-8) vs. Pearl Gonzalez (9-3)
Flyweight Tournament Semifinal: Milana Dudieva (12-7) vs. Karina Rodriguez (6-3)
Flyweight Tournament Semifinal: DeAnna Bennett (9-4-1) vs. Miranda Maverick (4-1)
Flyweight:  Tracy Cortez (4-1) vs. Erin Blanchfield (3-0)
Featherweight: Helena Kolesnyk (5-2, 1 NC) vs. Faith McMah (6-3)
Flyweight: Victoria Leonardo (3-1) vs. Jamie Milanowski (2-2)
Featherweight: Courtney King (1-1) vs. Holli Logan (1-0-1)
Flyweight: Caitlin Sammons (0-0) vs. Christina Ricker (1-1)

Tickets for Invicta FC 34 are available for purchase at invictafc34.eventbrite.com.


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Vanessa Porto vs. Pearl Gonzalez Flyweight Title Fight Headlines Invicta FC 34

Kansas City, Mo. — Invicta Fighting Championships is returning to where it all began.

On Friday, Feb. 15, the promotion touches down at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan. — the host of the first four Invicta FC events — for its 34th fight card. The event will stream live on UFC Fight Pass at 7 p.m. CT.

In the night’s main event, the vacant flyweight title will be on the line between Brazilian veteran Vanessa Porto (20-8) and surging contender Pearl Gonzalez (9-3).

Porto is riding the momentum of back-to-back wins, having earned a stoppage win at Invicta FC 26, before submitting Mariana Morais at Invicta FC 27. The 34-year-old will fight for Invicta gold for third time after coming up short on the scorecards in two prior attempts.

The Chicago native Gonzalez has been on a tear since joining the Invicta roster. After defeating Kali Robbins at strawweight in her promotional debut, the Team Hurricane Awesome product moved up to 125 pounds and has continued to find success. She submitted Brazilian Bárbara Acioly last March and then topped Daiane Firmino on the scorecards at Invicta FC 29.

Also on the card, a four-woman flyweight tournament will kick off to determine the next No. 1 contender. On one side of the bracket, UFC veteran Milana Dudieva (12-7) takes on undefeated Brogan Walker-Sanchez (6-0) of Guam. In the other half of the ladder, UFC veteran and former Invicta FC strawweight title challenger DeAnna Bennett (9-4-1) meets Missouri’s Miranda Maverick (4-1). The two winners will meet later this year for a shot at Invicta gold. A bout between Tracy Cortez (4-1) and Mexico’s Karina Rodriguez (6-3) will serve as the tournament’s reserve match-up.

The card also includes a featherweight match-up between former title challenger Faith McMah (6-3) and Helena Kolesnyk (5-2, 1 NC).

The current Invicta FC 34 fight card can be found below:

Flyweight Title: Vanessa Porto (20-8) vs. Pearl Gonzalez (9-3)
Flyweight Tournament Semifinal: Milana Dudieva (12-7) vs. Brogan Walker-Sanchez (6-0)
Flyweight Tournament Semifinal: DeAnna Bennett (9-4-1) vs. Miranda Maverick (4-1)
Flyweight: Tracy Cortez (4-1) vs. Karina Rodriguez (6-3)
Featherweight: Faith McMah (6-3) vs. Helena Kolesnyk (5-2, 1 NC).

Tickets for Invicta FC 34 go on sale Wednesday, Jan. 16, and are available for purchase at invictafc34.eventbrite.com.


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Invicta FC 33 Results: Frey Again Edges Grusander, Retains Atomweight Title

Kansas City, Mo. — On Saturday, Dec. 15, Invicta Fighting Championships hosted Invicta FC 33: Frey vs. Grusander II from the Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, Mo. The preliminary card streamed live on Facebook at 7:30 p.m. CT, with the five-fight main card airing on UFC Fight Pass beginning at 9 p.m. CT.

The Invicta atomweight belt is still around the waist of Jinh Yu Frey after another five-round war with Finland’s Minna Grusander. After a patient start, where both fighters threw leg kicks to find their range, Grusander dropped the champion with a right hand. Frey quickly recovered, but that allowed Grusander to take her to the ground. The Finnish fighter closed the round strong with punches from the top. In round two, Frey looked for a takedown, but could not secure it. The right hand of Grusander continued to land, wobbling Frey a second time. Frey responded with a stiff left of her own late in round two. The left hand of Frey did damage early in round three and she earned a takedown of her own. Grusander was able to get back to her feet and use her wrestling to make the round close. The pace slowed in the fourth round, but Frey was able to score with elbows from the clinch. The challenger stuck to her like glue, but she could not score another takedown. The nose of Grusander poured blood from the consistent left hands of Frey. The final stanza was largely even as both fighters were desperate to make a final impression on the judges. The final horn sounded and the decision was left to the judges at cageside. They were split in their verdict, but they rewarded Frey for her efforts, as she retained the belt.

UFC veteran Danielle Taylor handed Mexico’s Monserrat Ruiz her first career defeat after three, hard-fought rounds. Taylor’s striking attack kept Ruiz at bay in the fight’s first stanza. Ruiz frequently tried to clinch, but Taylor battered her lead leg with inside leg kicks. Taylor stayed at range, landing counter punches with regularity. The constant pressure from Ruiz was ineffective through the first two rounds, as Taylor’s leg kicks turned her leg purple. In the final round, Ruiz powered through Taylor’s punches, closing the distance. Taylor shrugged her off, but was forced to defend a leg lock attempt. That gave Ruiz an opening, and she took the fight to the canvas with a headlock. She was able to take Taylor’s back in the fight’s waning moments, but it was too little, too late, as Taylor was victorious.

Strawweight Kay Hansen pulled off one of the greatest comebacks in Invicta history, submitting Sharon Jacobson in the final seconds of the third round. Jacobson put on a clinic with her wrestling, largely controlling the 19-year-old Hansen for the entire fight. Stepping in on short notice, Hansen tried to push the pace, but Jacobson slammed her to the ground in the fight’s opening seconds. That set the tone for the fight, as Jacobson ragdolled Hansen throughout the first two rounds. She pounded on Hansen with ground and pound, but she could not put away the Californian. With less than a minute remaining in the fight, Jacobson looked for a throw, but Hansen latched onto an arm. Hansen went belly down and cranked, coercing the tap from Jacobson to pull off the unthinkable finish.

Michigan’s Alesha Zappitella is quickly moving up the atomweight ranks, as she dominated former title challenger Amber Brown over the course of three rounds. Zappitella used her wrestling prowess to put Brown on her back early and often. She frequently passed to side control and landed short shots. Brown tried to attack from her back, but Zappitella attacked with an arm-triangle choke and then a kimura. The experience of Brown was apparent, as she never panicked and frequently worked her way back to standing. Zappitella, however, was able to dictate where the fight took place, which proved to be the difference, as she captured the nod from all three judges.

The night’s main card kicked off with the return of Brianna Van Buren, who took on UFC veteran Jamie Moyle. Van Buren’s speed advantage was evident from the opening bell as she peppered Moyle with punching combinations. Moyle countered with forward pressure, prompting Van Buren to work the body. Late in the opening stanza, Van Buren flurried hard, backing Moyle against the fence and securing a takedown. The onslaught opened a large cut over the right eye of Moyle. Van Buren earned another takedown in round two, pinning Moyle against the fence. She scored with ground and pound, but could not find a finish. Van Buren kept her foot on the gas in the fight’s final frame, working Moyle’s body with kicks. When it was all said and done, Van Buren swept the judges’ scorecards.

Making her Invicta debut, bantamweight Brittney Victoria used her crisp boxing technique to get the best of veteran Sarah Kleczka on the scorecards to close out the preliminary card. Victoria scored with straight punches early in the fight, preventing Kleczka from getting into range. Kleczka was able to land counter shots and bloodied the nose of Victoria. Kleczka looked to bring the fight to the mat, but Victoria easily stuffed her shots and answered with punches. Kleczka’s nose also poured blood after Victoria delivered another series of right hands in the second round. The final frame was a back-and forth affair, but Victoria’s output was greater than Kleczka’s, earning her the decision win from all three judges.

Canadian newcomer Anastasia Nikolakakos sent a statement to the atomweight division, battering California’s Ashley Medina en route to a second-round TKO finish. Nikolakakos was the aggressor from the opening bell, forcing Medina to the mat and quickly taking her back. She rained punches before transitioning for an armbar. Medina was able to escape and return to her feet, but it was short lived as Nikolakakos again took her to the ground. Round two was more of the same, as Nikolakakos continued to pound away on Medina. After the barrage of strikes, the referee stepped in and Nikolakakos remained undefeated.

In a battle of debuting flyweights, Chantel Coates wasted little time dispatching of her fellow Kansas native Ashlynn Kleinbeck. Coates cracked Kleinbeck early with a right hand and Kleinbeck stumbled backwards. Coates smelled blood and went for the finish along the fence. Another massive right hand flush to the jaw sent Kleinbeck crashing to the mat unconscious, as Coates secures the fastest knockout in promotional history.

OFFICIAL RESULTS
Jinh Yu Frey def. Minna Grusander by split decision (48-47, 47-48, 48-47) – for atomweight title
Danielle Taylor def. Monserrat Ruiz by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)
Kay Hansen def. Sharon Jacobson by submission (armbar). Round 3, 4:43
Alesha Zappitella def. Amber Brown by unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Brianna Van Buren def. Jamie Moyle by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26)
Brittney Victoria def. Sarah Kleczka by unanimous decision (29-28 x3)
Anastasia Nikolakakos def. Ashley Medina by TKO (strikes). Round 2, 3:26
Chantel Coates def. Ashlynn Kleinbeck by knockout (punch). Round 1, 0:28


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Invicta FC 33: Frey vs. Grusander II Official Weigh-in Results

Kansas City, Mo. — On Friday, Dec. 14, Invicta Fighting Championships hosted the weigh-ins for Invicta FC 33: Frey vs. Grusander II. The event takes place from the historic Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, Mo., on Saturday, Dec. 15, with the main card streaming live and exclusively on UFC Fight Pass beginning at 9 p.m. CT. The night’s preliminary card kicks off at 7:30 p.m. CT streaming live and free on Facebook, as well as UFC Fight Pass.

The night’s main event features an atomweight title rematch between champion Jinh Yu Frey (7-3) and Minna Grusander (6-2). The pair met previously in July at Invicta FC 30, with the Texas fighter Frey edging Finland’s Grusander on the scorecards after five, hard-fought rounds.

In the night’s co-main event, UFC veteran Danielle Taylor (9-4) makes her promotional debut against undefeated Mexican fighter Monserrat Ruiz (8-0) in a strawweight match-up.

Below are the results of the event’s weigh-ins.

Atomweight Title: Jinh Yu Frey (104.5) vs. Minna Grusander (104.8)
Strawweight: Danielle Taylor (115.1) vs. Monserrat Ruiz (114.8)
Strawweight: Sharon Jacobson (115.3) vs. Kay Hansen (114.8)
Atomweight: Amber Brown (104.6) vs. Alesha Zappitella (105.7)
Strawweight: Jamie Moyle (125.1)* vs. Brianna Van Buren (115.2)
Bantamweight: Sarah Kleczka (135.8) vs. Brittney Victoria (135.2)
Atomweight: Ashley Medina (105.4) vs. Anastasia Nikolakakos (104.8)
Flyweight: Chantel Coates (126) vs. Ashlynn Kleinbeck (124.1)

* – Moyle was fined 25 percent of her fight purse for missing the strawweight limit of 116 pounds


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Invicta FC 33 Preliminary Card Streams Live and Free on Facebook

Kansas City, Mo. — The preliminary card for Invicta FC 33 on Saturday, Dec. 15, will stream on Facebook at 7:30 p.m. CT.

The event takes place from the historic Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, Mo., and will kick off with three bouts streaming live and free on Facebook, with the main card airing live on UFC Fight Pass at 9 p.m CT.

First on the docket will be a flyweight bout between newcomers Chantel Coates (0-0) and Ashlynn Kleinbeck (0-0). That bout will be followed by an atomweight clash featuring the returning Ashley Medina (0-1) opposite Canada’s Anastasia Nikolakakos (2-0). Preliminary-card action concludes with a bantamweight bout between two-time Invicta veteran Sarah Kleczka (2-1) and undefeated newcomer Brittney Victoria (2-0).

The action then shifts to UFC Fight Pass at 9 p.m. CT for the remaining five fights, including the atomweight title rematch between champion Jinh Yu Frey (7-3) and Minna Grusander (6-2). The pair met previously in July, with the Texas fighter Frey edging Finland’s Grusander on the scorecards after five, hard-fought rounds.

In the night’s co-main event, UFC veteran Danielle Taylor (9-4) makes her promotional debut against undefeated Mexican fighter Monserrat Ruiz (8-0) in a strawweight match-up.

The full fight card for Invicta FC 33 can be found below:

Atomweight Title: Jinh Yu Frey (7-3) vs. Minna Grusander (6-2)
Strawweight: Danielle Taylor (9-4) vs. Monserrat Ruiz (8-0)
Strawweight: Sharon Jacobson (5-3) vs. Kay Hansen (3-2)
Atomweight: Amber Brown (7-4) vs. Alesha Zappitella (4-0, 1 NC)
Strawweight: Jamie Moyle (4-3) vs. Brianna Van Buren (4-2)
Bantamweight: Sarah Kleczka (2-1) vs. Brittney Victoria (2-0)
Atomweight: Ashley Medina (0-1) vs. Anastasia Nikolakakos (2-0)
Flyweight: Chantel Coates (0-0) vs. Ashlynn Kleinbeck (0-0)

Invicta FC 33 will also mark the debut of former Invicta FC featherweight champion and current UFC contender Megan Anderson as an in-cage, post-fight correspondent.

Tickets for Invicta FC 33 are on sale now and available for purchase at Ticketfly.com.


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.

Kay Hansen Replaces Kanako Murata, Faces Sharon Jacobson at Invicta FC 33

Kansas City, Mo. — The fight card for Invicta FC 33 has changed due to injury.

Strawweight newcomer Kanako Murata (8-1) has been forced out of her promotional debut against fellow wrestler Sharon Jacobson (5-3). Stepping in on short notice will be 19-year-old Kay Hansen (3-2).

Hansen was last in action in November, falling via hard-fought decision to Erin Blanchfield at Invicta FC 32. The Californian has finished all three of her career wins, including two inside the Invicta cage.

Jacobson has compiled a 3-1 record with the promotion, most recently defeating Ashley Nichols on the scorecards at Invicta FC 27 in January.

Invicta FC 33 takes place Saturday, Dec. 15, from the historic Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, Mo. The card is headlined by an atomweight title rematch between champion Jinh Yu Frey (7-3) and Minna Grusander (6-2). The pair met previously in July, with the Texas fighter Frey edging Finland’s Grusander on the scorecards.

The updated fight card for Invicta FC 33 can be found below:

Atomweight Title: Jinh Yu Frey (7-3) vs. Minna Grusander (6-2)
Strawweight: Danielle Taylor (9-4) vs. Monserrat Ruiz (8-0)
Strawweight: Sharon Jacobson (5-3) vs. Kay Hansen (3-2)
Atomweight: Amber Brown (7-4) vs. Alesha Zappitella (4-0, 1 NC)
Strawweight: Jamie Moyle (4-3) vs. Brianna Van Buren (4-2)
Bantamweight: Sarah Kleczka (2-1) vs. Brittney Victoria (2-0)
Atomweight: Ashley Medina (0-1) vs. Anastasia Nikolakakos (2-0)
Flyweight: Chantel Coates (0-0) vs. Ashlynn Kleinbeck (0-0)

Tickets for Invicta FC 33 are on sale now and available for purchase at Ticketfly.com.


About Invicta FC:

Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship, all-pro mixed martial arts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a major platform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 by longtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp, Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA by promoting the best possible match-ups between female competitors and identifying and developing future superstars of the sport. Follow Invicta on Twitter (@InvictaFights), Facebook (Facebook.com/InvictaFights), and Instagram (@InvictaFC) for all the latest information.