Kristina Williams used her reach advantage, and kept Emily Ducote at bay for the better part of three rounds on Friday night at Bellator 195, in a spirited, close contest.
At Bellator 195 in Thackerville, OK on Friday, a pair of women’s flyweights threw down in a rather intriguing match-up. Emily Ducote, fresh off a title challenge for the inaugural 125lb championship in Bellator, was taking on Kristina Williams. Williams had just a single pro fight to her name, but that was a win over the popular Heather Hardy.
As the action got underway, Ducote held center, but Williams used her length to keep her outside. Ducote was stuffed on her first single leg attempt, and from there, Williams would control on the feet. She turned the affair into a standup battle, with Ducote occasionally threatening to get inside, or catch a kick. However, it was mostly Williams making an impact until the final minute of round one, when Ducote did in fact catch a kick, taking Williams down. There wasn’t enough time to make much happen, however, and they went to round two.
The second saw Emily Ducote do everything she could to close the distance. She would launch attacks, only to be countered and pushed back by Williams, who was soon firing combinations, and effective high kicks. Ducote showed considerable heart, but was eating a hefty number of shots. She was, however, able to land a high kick of her own. In the dying seconds of the round, Wiliams exploded with a barrage of strikes, including elbows, that pressed Ducote back against the fence. Ducote fired back with a shot that rocked Williams just as the round came to a close.
Ducote continued to initiate the attacks early in round three. Williams was answering back and getting the better of most exchanges; Ducote was bloodied and still trying to figure out how to combat the reach of Williams. Ducote was bloodied but far from unbowed, and scored a takedown in the final ninety seconds of the fight. Williams employed a butterfly guard; Ducote passed first to side control, then to mount, and threw up an arm-bar attempt in the dying seconds. Williams defended well, and forced the fight to the scorecards, in what could be a very interesting result. And it was — a split decision, with two judges seeing it for Williams, but the third giving all three rounds to Emily Ducote.
Kristina Williams def. Emily Ducote by split decision (29-28, 27-30, 29-28)