With all the news this past weekend, one item may have been incidentally flew under the radar, but will be important for the future of the women’s divisions.
The International MMA Federation has formed a Women’s Committee, which held its first meeting on International Women’s Day. The committee of four women will help facilitate and oversee projects to expand women and girls in the sport internationally in the coming years not only in the amateur, but pro ranks as well.
The IMMAF itself has been a catalyst for the expansion of the women’s divisions internationally over the years, with stars like Minna Grusander and Sunna Davidsdottir making their way into the professional end of the sport.
In what will be the first time Bahrain will see a female MMA fights, 53 women athletes from across 22 countries will competing for the IMMAF World Championship. Five champions will be crown in a six day tournament November 11-19.
Two countries will be sending representatives for the first time as Tunisia and the host country Bahrain will have athletes taking part.
The US has one lone representative in bantamweight Fotini Kandris.
Emilce Ortiz def. Anita Cardozo by KO 1:45 round 3 (110)
Monica Quiroga def. Ruth Roa by KO 3:45 of round 2 (115)
Angelica Bordon def. Charline Acosta by TKO 2:30 round 2 (130)
Laura Patino def. Beatriz Acosta by Unanimous Decision (110)
Sally Ortigoza def. Claudina Candia by TKO 4:55 round 1 (135)
Araceli Roja def. Katherin Souludre by submission 2:10 round 1 (120; amateur bout)
At World Series of Fighting in Tokyo, Japan, Japanese fighting legend Hisae Watanabe made a successful return to MMA, defeating Ye Ji Lee by TKO at 3:00 of round 2.
Watanabe (20-6) hadn’t fought MMA in nine years, but she came in like she hasn’t missed a step. The KO specialist racked up her 12th finish by that method and will look to make an impact in the atomweight division.
In the other female bout on the card, Ukraine’s Anna Bezhenar got her second win as a pro, defeating Singapore’s May Ooi by unanimous decision.
In other pro action this past week:
At Dragon House in San Fransico, California Jaimelene Nievera defeated Charlene Gellner by leglock round 2. In an amateur bout, Edna Martinez defeated Maritza Sanchez by split decision
In Fight Night Kotka, Finland Eeva Siiskonen and Irén Rácz fought to a draw
At 100% Fight in France, Maguy Berchel and Maria Casanova fight to a draw
Holly Holm has taken more World MMA Awards than any other fighter.
Holm won four trophies, including Upset, Newcomer, Knockout, and Female Fighter of the Year at the ceremony this past weekend at the Venetian in Las Vegas.
The ceremony will air on Friday on Fox Sports 2.
It is a rematch everyone wants to see, and it will be in the UFC.
Tecia Torres will looks to keep her record undefeated as she takes on Rose Namajunas on April 16 in Tampa, Florida. The match could see the next contender for the strawweight title.
Torres (7-0) is coming off a win over a late replacement in Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger in December. She is officially 3-0 in the UFC.
Namjunas (4-2) has won back to back fights, with her only losses to Torres and Carla Esparza.
The two first squared off at InvictaFC 6 in 2013, with Torres taking the unanimous decision win.
Also announced for the card, Raquel Pennington (6-5) is looking for her second straight win against former title challenger Bethe Correia (9-1).
Both matches will air on Fox Network April 16.
Jessica Aguilar and Juliana Lima have agreed to a fight. Rumor is UFC 198 in Brazil May 14.
Aguilar (19-5) was on an 11 fight win streak before losing her UFC debut to Claudia Gadelha. Lima (8-2) is coming off back to back wins.
The Ultimate Fighter 23 has started shooting this past week, with “Get in the House” matches. The cast has yet to be announced, but won’t surprise us if they are revealed during UFC 196 fight week.
Multiple WMMA Press Award winner Angela Lee will be back in action February 20th as she takes on Rebecca Heintzman at One Championships in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Lee (4-0) has submitted all of her pro opponents with her first three in the first round. She won the “Submission of the Year” with a twister over Natalie Gonzales-Hills.
Heintzman (2-1) was undefeated as an amateur and is coming off a decision loss to Katlyn Chookagian.
Both fighters have signed multi-fight deals with the promotion.
Princesses of Pain exited their year crowning a new 175 pound champion.
In a round robin tournament, Ashton Brown took home crown as she defeated both Inna Schwalger and Beathe Korneliussen by second round TKO. (Schwalger lost due to a shoulder injury.)
The main event saw Renata Poa and Gase Sanita battle to a close split decision, with Poa getting the judges’s nod. Natalie Stuart, Rian Stuart, and Briar Johnson all received wins to round out the pro portion of the card.
The 19 fight event included a daytime all amateur female card. Several ammy fights happened during the evening portion, including a submission of the night performance by Chelsea Retemeyer. She would use an Americana to submit Tania Barnett in the opening fight of the night card.
Here are the complete results:
Renata Poa def. Gase Sanita by split decision
Co-Main Event 175 Tournament Finals
Ashton Brown def. Beathe Korneliussen by TKO 1:01 round 2
Ashton Brown def. Inna Schwalger by TKO (shoulder injury) round 2
Briar Johnston def. Catherine Drinnan by unanimous decision
Natalie Harper def. Barbara Verlinden by submission (guillotine) 1:27 round 3
Rian Stuart def. Michelle Gillgren by unanimous decision
Sally Asiata-Kaokao def. Elisa Marneth-Rust by KO 2:35 round 1
Jessica Bradley def. Lena Pologa by TKO 2:20 round 3
Wendy Talbot def. Paula Davidson by submission (armbar) 2;10 round 1
Nyrene Cowley def. Jessica Fothergill by unanimous decision
Chelsea Retemeyer def. Tania Barnett by submission (Americana) 1:01 round 2
Day Card (All Amateur)
Jo Burke def. Raeleen Simeon by unanimous decision
Australia’s Cleo Magazine is known for being on top of fashion trends, fitness tips, and celebrity interviews. For this story, however, deputy editor Lizza Gebilagin decided to get more hands on.
The online series “Fight Like a Girl” chronicles Gebilagin 2014 journey to train to become a MMA fighter. Having never even threw a punch in her life, she dove in head on into the fighter lifestyle. This included giving up her vices and training six days a week, while balancing her job, friends, and family.
She didn’t do this alone as some of the top fighters in the country bestowed some wisdom on her, including UFC fighter Alex Chambers and boxing champ Lauryn Eagle.
The six episode series wraps this week with Gebilagin MMA’s debut at Brace MMA.
As I explained in my open letter, I am looking to change Wombat Sports to what it was initially meant to be. I can’t do this on my own, and that;s where you come in.
We are looking for contributors to help with writing articles and covering certain combat sports. You would also get to interview talented athletes in those sports.
The main contributors we are looking for is in women’s boxing, Muay Thai, freestyle wrestling, and BJJ. (We already have some people interested in covering the WMMA portion of the site). The cool things is I have the tools to gain news and info for these sports, just not the time to write it up. You can “learn on the job” if you aren’t an expert on these topics; but being curious is the key thing.
After a nine month absence, Raquel Pennington (5-4) came back to the octagon and handed Ashlee Evans-Smith her first pro loss at UFC 181 in Las Vegas, NV.
Smith used her wrestling to control the majority of the round, opening a gash in the middle of Pennington’s forehead. Towards the end of the round, Pennington landed a takedown and as Smith was standing up, Pennington took the back and was able to get the bulldog headlock on Smith. Pennington used it to choke out Smith and Smith was out right before the bell rang to end round 1. The ref stopped the fight.
Pennington gets back on the winning track after a close decision loss to Jessica Andrade.
MMA Super Heroes ended the year with three female bouts in São Paulo, Brazil.
Tournament champion Renata Baldan recovered from her first pro loss by defeating Luciana Treze by unanimous decision. Baldan improves to 4-1.
Mariana Leonardo gains her 4th by defeating Karina Santana de Oliveira by TKO round 1 after Oliveira ends it inbetween rounds.
In an amateur atomweight bout, Solange Tirolli defeated Adriana Curtz by TKO in round 2.
Bantamweight prospect Jessica Zomchik earned her second professional 1st round armbar, this time defeating Stacey Sigala at Gladiators of the Cage in Pittsburgh, PA.
In two amateur bouts on the card, Jena Baldwin defeated Jamie Driver by split decision and Melissa Gasdick defeated Sarah Click by disuqalifcation after an illegal head kick round 2.
In other pro bouts:
At Roshambo in Australia, Megan Anderson submitted Zoie Shreiweis by armbar round 1
Ariel Beck defeated Angela Hayes by unanimous decision at Fightforce in Butte, MT
At Maringá Combat in Maringa, Parana, Brazil, Hevellyn Moura defeated Jade Menezes by unanimous decision
In amateur MMA action:
At Matrix Fights in Philadelphia, PA, Serena DeJesus submits Amanda Kramny by rear naked choke round 3
Makan Clemons defeated Victoria Frano by unanimous decision at Kingdom 3 in Houston, TX
At Dynasty Combat Sports in Lincoln, Nebraska, Erin Smith defeated Janie Konyek by unanimous decision
At Conflict MMA in Hardeeville, SC, Annie DeCresente defeated Jenna Fox by unanimous decision
In a pair of bouts at British Challenge MMA in Colchester, Essex, England, Sinead Kavanagh defeated Jaye Haynes by TKO (retirement) 3:00 round 1 and Ameesha Bhudia defeated Wendy McKenna by unanimous decision
Dominique Gallegher-Gonzales defeated Stephanie Builderback by unanimous decision at Cowboy Extreme Fighting in San Antonio, Texas. Also on the card, Brandi Narvaez defeated Laurie Ashby by TKO 0:22 round 1
In a pair of bouts at Rumble at the Roseland in Portland, OR, Hailea Brooks defeated Chun Yang by TKO round 2, and Kalyn Schwartz defeated Lisa Spangler by unanimous decision
Yumi Matsumoto defeated Danielle Alfapada by TKO 2:15 round 2 at King of the Cage in Las Vegas, Nevada
At St. Louis MMA, Kelly Keenon defeated Aimee Masters by TKO round 2
In a pair of bouts MFL in South Bend, Indiana, Kara Vislosky defeated Alyssa Lawrence by unanimous decision and Veronica Weaver defeated Brooke Stamm by TKO (retirement) round 1
Nicole Wesner earned he first world titles in spectacular fashion this past weekend in Vienna, Austria with a knockout over Gina Chamie in round 3. With the win, Wesner wins the vacant WIBF and vacant WBF lightweight titles.
Wesner remains undefeated at 9-0.
Arely Mucino earns her second world title defeating Shindo Go by unanimous decision to win the WBC World flyweight title in Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico. Mucino was the former interim WBA flyweight champion.
Mucino (21-2-2; 1 NC) increases her undefeated streak to seven.
Jackie Nava successfully defended her WBC and WBA super bantamweight title, getting an unanimous decision over Sayda Mosquera in Sonora, Mexico.
Nava (31-4-3) had defended her WBA title for the fifth time and her WBC title for the second. Her win streak continues at seven.
In a heavyweight rematch Sonya Lamonakis defeated Carlette Ewell by split decision to win the vacant IBO World heavyweight title in Philipsburg, Sint Maarten.
The two went to a draw in 2012 and this match was so close, we won’t be surprised if we see a trilogy match.
EBU female super bantamweight champion Karine Rinaldo improves her win streak to eight, defeating Nevenka Mikulic by unanimous decision in Corse-du-Sud, France.
Rinaldo (11-1-1) defend her title for the first time since winning it back in June.
On other boxing bouts:
In a pair of fights in Santiago del Estero, Argentina, Vanesa del Valle Calderon knockouts out Valeria Almiron in round 1 and Valeria Vanesa Gramajo defeated Natalia Vanesa Lopez by unanimous decision
Simona Galassi defeated Evgeniya Zablotskaya by unanimous decision in Emilia Romagna, Italy
In a pair of bouts in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Jelena Mrdjenovich defeated Pasa Malagic by TKO round 3, and Kandi Wyatt defeated Lita Mae Button by TKO round 4
Farida El Hadrati defeated Sabrina Giuliani by unanimous decision in Puy-de-Dôme, France
In Differdange, Luxembourg, Caroline Thea Andre defeated Gabriella Vetro by unanimous decision
Noelia Gutierrez defeated Lorena Noemi Gomez by unanimous decision in Santa Fe, Argentina
Next Wednesday, the finally two quarterfinal matches as Carla Esparza faces Tecia Torres in a match a year in the making, and Rose Namjunas takes on Joanne Calderwood.
Irene Alana has an unknown illness and is out of InvictaFC 10 next weekend against Marion Reneau. A replacement has yet to be named.
Two female bouts have been announced for MMA Super Heroes last card of 2014.
Tournament winner Renata Baldan looks to recover from her first loss as she takes on unbeaten Luciana Treze in a strawweight contest, and Karina Santana de Oliveira looks to gain her second win as a pro against flyweight prospect Mariana Leonardo.
Australia’s XFC (not to be confused with XFC International) will start its flyweight tournament February 28, 2015 in Brisbane.
The opening round features Terissa Wall (1-0) taking on Kate Da Silva (7-2) and Jaz Walker (1-0 ammy) battling Hera Tamati (0-1).
We wish a speedy recovery to InvictaFC vet Jasminka Cive as she is battle a staph infection.
Still some heavy rumors that InvictaFC 11 will be in Denver.
Princesses of Pain is back as they are set for their all female MMA card this weekend in New Zealand.
In the main event, champion Kate da Silva will start her drop in weight classes, taking on Rhiannon Thompson in a 132 pound catchweight bout.
In the co-main event, Tairi Ford and Gaela Nixon duke it out in a flyweight contest.
Amateur standout Roma Pawelek will make her long awaited pro debut as she takes on the undefeated Ashleigh Heustis at Beatdown in Newtown, ND.
Also on the card, InvictaFC vet Kathina Catron battles Rachael Smith.
In other pro bouts:
In a pair of bouts at It’s Lanna Time 2 in Germany, Katharina Lehner takes on Sandra Redegeld, and Ania Fucz faces Cinja Kiefer
Karine Silva battles Sarah Silva at AFC 14 in Lages, Brazil
In amateur action:
In a pair of bouts at Spar Star in Inglewood, CA, Danielle Mack fights Farren Romero and JaShonna Owens faces Selena Lorigo
Jady Larissa takes on Paula Eletrica at Copa Striker’s House 44 in Brazil
Pound for pound queen Cecilia Braekhus will defend her four titles this weekend in Frederiksberg, Denmark.
The 26-0 WBA/WBO/WBC/IBF World welterweight champion will take on #1 contender Jennifer Retzke.
Retzke (15-1-1) has only lost once in the past 4 years. She is the current IBO welterweight champion, but will not be defending her title.
Both Brækhus (64.6 kg) and Retzke (66 kg) made weight.
Also on the card, Klara Svensson will defend her interim WBC World light welterweight title against Lucia Morelli.
In Guanajuato, Mexico, Jessica Gonzalez will defend her interim WBC World female bantamweight title for a second time against Magali Rodriguez.
Gonbzalez (5-1) won the title last year, and is coming off a split draw to Estrella Valverde this past August. Rodriguez (14-5-1) is coming off a TKO win over Marisela Landa in August and is looking for her first win.
In other boxing bouts:
In Buenos Aires, Argentina, Fernanda Soledad Alegre takes on Ana Laura Esteche
Enis Pacheco faces Paola Rojas in Montelibano, Colombia
In Samobor, Croatia, Ivana Habazin battles Galina Gumliiska
Megan Ouvrard fights Cyrielle Hebert in Charente-Maritime, France