Former InvictaFC strawweight champion Carla Esparza and InvictaFC star Rose Namajunas will square off for the initial title Friday on the TUF 20 Finale live from Las Vegas on Fox Sports 1.
Esparza (9-2) looked impressive in her semi-final bout with former InvictaFC atomweight champion Jessica Penne. Esparza’s volume striking and takedowns were key in the three round battle, which saw Penne stand in the pocket and chase Esparza. All three judges gave Esparza 30-27 on the score cards.
Esparza’s road to the finals included a rear naked choke over Angela Hill, a majority decision win over Tecia Torres, and the unanimous decision over Penne.
Namajunas (2-1) got her second kimura win in the tournament to guarantee her spot in the finals. Namajunas defeated Randa Markos in the second semi-final using her BJJ skills from bottom to transition to a kimura to get the tap in round 1.
Namajunas’s road to the finals saw her submit all of her opponents, including a rear naked choke over Alex Chambers and a kimura over Joanne Calderwood.
Semi-finalists Jessica Penne and Randa Markos will square off as well on the TUF 20 Finale and will kick off the main card.
They also announced the match order of the rest of the fights Friday, with all but two of them airing on Fox Sports 1.
Here is the schedule for Friday
Fox Sports 1 Main Card (9 p.m. est/6 p.m. pst)
- Main event – Carla Esparza vs. Rose Namajunas – initial strawweight title
- Jessica Penne vs. Randa Markos
Fox Sports 1 Prelims (7 p.m. est/4 p.m. pst):
- Felice Herrig vs. Lisa Ellis
- Bec Rawlings vs. Heather Jo Clark
- Joanne Calderwood vs. Seo Hee Ham
- Tecia Torres vs. Angela Magana
Fight Pass Prelims (6 p.m. est/3 p.m. pst):
- Aisling Daly vs. Alex Chambers
- Emily Kagan vs. Angela Hill