It has been one of the most exciting and historic six months in the women’s MMA divisions as dream fights and new stars rose to the occasion. After consulting fans on twitter and facebook, we have come up with the top five matches of the year so far.
1) Leslie Smith vs. Kaitlin Young – InvictaFC 1
This fight was easily in everyone’s top 2 fights of the year so far. The slugfest happened April 28 at the first ever InvictaFC card. The two talented kickboxers keep it on the feet and fought tooth and nail. It was so close to call, the judges declared it a draw. Smith vs. Young II is something every WMMA fan is looking forward to.
2) Sarah Kaufman vs. Alexis Davis – Strikeforce
Many complained that this fight should have been on the main card instead of being relegated to the preliminary card, but the match still delivered on ShoExtreme. Davis was bloodied early by fought on keeping pace with Sarah Kaufman. Kaufman’s striking edge would gain her the majority decision and a shot at Ronda Rousey in August.
3) Lisa Ellis vs. Jessica Penne – InvictaFC 1
Many people think the ground game is boring. Lisa Ellis and Jessica Penne proved it can be exciting.
In what was a chess match between two masters, Ellis and Penne moved and counter-moved with each other on the ground for three rounds with more submission attempts than you can fathom. In one of the more bloodier fights in women’s MMA history, Penne would get the victory with her ground and pound.
4) Rosi Sexton vs. Aisling Daly – CageWarriors
It was a match WMMA fans have been waiting for for years as Europe’s top flyweights faced each other on the semi-finals of the Cage Warriors 125 pound tournament.
Veteran Rosi Sexton fought off three armbar attempts by Daly early on, and took control in the striking game. With a close round 1 and the splitting the subsequent rounds, Sexton would get the unanimous decision victory.
5) Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate – Strikeforce
The rise of the superstar Ronda Rousey has been both quick and controversial. With her defeat of Miesha Tate, the new Strikeforce bantamweight champ is the queen of the mountain.
Tate has so far lasted the longest Ronda Rousey, a total of 4:27 minutes, and was able to take Rousey’s back during the fight. That was the only offence Tae would get, succumbing to the infamous Rousey armbar. Rousey will defend her title to Sarah Kaufman in August.
Honorable Mention – Jessica Aguilar vs. Megumi Fujii – Bellator 69
It was #1 versus #2 as Jessica Aguilar finally got to face her idol Megumi Fujii in a match with passed the torch to the next generation of fighters. The battle went between the feet and on the ground as both were evenly matched and had a close first round. Aguilar and Fujii would split rounds 2 and 3 respectively. Aguilar would win via unanimous decision, but Fujii has yet to be finished by any of her opponents. A legendary feat.