Would Sarah Kaufman win another major world title? Was it inevitable for Pearl Gonzalez to steal the show after a heated weigh-in on Thursday? Invicta FC 29 had the answers Friday night in Kansas City!
Invicta FC 29 went down Saturday night, live from the Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, MO. Topped by a bantamweight title fight between former Strikeforce champ Sarah Kaufman and Germany’s Katharina Lehner, the promotion’s third show of 2018 was a star-studded affair. Also on the card, former UFC strawweight turned flyweight Pearl Gonzalez — who had a bit of a shoving match with opponent Barbara Acioly at the weigh-ins a day earlier. And in the co-main event, Pannie Kianzad, looking to snap a three fight skid after starting her career out a perfect 8-0.
It was Kianzad who Sarah Kaufman defeated earlier in the year to earn her shot at the vacant bantamweight title.
Airing exclusively on UFC Fight Pass, Invicta FC 29: Kaufman vs. Lehner kicks off at 8PM ET. Check back come fight time for a full recap and results from the evening’s action!
Helen Peralta vs. Cheyanne Vlismas
Strawweight action kicked off the Invicta FC 29 card, as Helen Peralta met Cheyanne Vlismas in the first bout of the evening. A little bit of bad blood permeated this bout, with Vlismas feeling Peralta had disrespected both her and a teammate at varying points. It was Vlismas catching a kick early and pressing Peralta up against the cage with underhooks. Back in the middle, Peralta was firing, but not really landing until a right hand connected. Vlismas answered with a kick. She caught another Peralta kick, and was able to connect with a punch over it. Vlismas continued to find success with counters, but Peralta was starting to find her range as the round wore on. Vlismas, however, capped the round off with a push kick and waved Peralta in as the bell sounded.
Round two saw both girls looking fresh, but it was Helen Peralta landing a huge right hand, dropping her opponent. Vlismas stayed on her back, defending, but Perlata refused to follow her to the ground. With the ref standing Vlismas back up, Peralta began to stalk her, backing her up and landing a flurry of strikes as Cheyanne Vlismas covered up. She survived, answering back, but she was under heavy fire in the round. Peralta was loose, throwing in a spinning kick, and Vlismas was looking for a takedown to take the pressure off. Peralta utilized a whizzer to fend her oppoent offer, then tagged Vlismas yet again. Vlismas looed for a throw, but Peralta again fought her off. More blows by Peralta landed, though in the final minute Vlismas was able to land a standing elbow. Still, she finished the frame by giving up her back and being thrown to the ground.
Round three saw Vlismas pressing the action against the fence in a clinch only to be reversed, and nearly tripped. Peralta slipped in a gorgeous standing elbow, but Vlismas again initiated a clinch by the fence. What had fallen off, however, was her striking, though she went high with a kick moments later. As the third round wore on, Vlismas found her hands again, and began landing a number of combinations, punctuating several with leg kicks and knees. Vlismas began connecting more and more in the final minute, and the scorecards were going to be interesting.
Helen Peralta def. Cheyanne Vlismas by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Allison Schmidt vs. Macy Chiasson
In featherweight action, Schmidt vs. Chiasson suddenly had a little more weight to it with the UFC’s recent decision to include women’s 145lbs on The Ultimate Fighter. Regardless as to whether either woman were to go on the show, suddenly, the weight class appeared to have a future beyond the reign of Cris Cyborg. Early in this one, it was Schmidt pressing the clinch against the fence. When they did break, Macy Chiasson let lose, tagging Schmidt at least once.
The second saw Chiasson loading up her shots, while Schmidt stayed on the outside, circling out of danger and throwing the odd kick. When she did find her way isnide, Schmidt initiated the clinch, but was unable to take her opponent down. Once Chiasson escaped, she was able to unleash another flurry of strikes, but Schmidt managed to avoid taking too much damage. Chiasson would begin to work in a number of kicks, and mixed in stance switches as well. Schmidt would again initiate a clinch in the dying moments of the second round, looking for a single leg but unable to complete it.
In the third, Chiasson was able to drop Schmidt with a left hand in the opening minute of the round. Chiasson than pressed for a takedown, working for a single leg and trying to sneak a leg behind her opponent’s for a trip. Schmidt, however, was able to stay on her feet, buying some recovery time. The remainder of the round had her on guard for both Chiasson’s heavy hands and a possible takedown, and there was no surprise at the victor when it went to the scorecards.
Macy Chiasson def. Allison Schmidt by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Sarah Kleczka vs. Lisa Spangler
‘The Strangler’ Spangler displayed some great lateral movement early in this bantamweight bout. Kleczka, who had fought just a week earlier, looked for a way in, throwing jabs and leg kicks. Spangler then connected with a kick that tripped up Kleczka, and nearly took the back looking for a choke. Kleczka was able to fight her off, but her mobility may have taken a hit due to the earlier kick.
With little action early in round four, Kleczka was once again looking for a way in. When she did close the distance, Spangler was able to push her off easily enough. Spangler was able to land a couple of times following that; Kleczka spent much of the round circling, though she did land a couple of rights as time wore on. However, neither woman was able to get their combos going, with the final minute seeing the most action. Kleczka would move in for a takedown, only to slip to her back with Spangler on top dropping hammer fists.
In the third, Spanger kept her jab working, and continued the strong lateral movement that seemed to have thrown Kleczka for a loop most of the fight. Kleczka did, however, connect with a heavy kick just under two minutes in, in what was one of her better moments. Just as in the second round, a Kleczka takedown led to Spangler getting on top, unleashing another short flurry of strikes before Kleczka could escape. In the final minute they finally opened up, with Kleczka opening up a cut on the cheek of Spangler. That was too little, too late however, as Spangler already had it in the bag.
Lisa Spangler def. Sarah Kleczka by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Liz Tracy vs. Cheri Muraski
It was Tracy punching her way to a clinch early in flyweight action between Liz Tracy and Cheri Muraski. Come the midway point, Muraski was bloodied, and had to contend with Tracy on her back. Eventually they’d go to the ground, with Tracy wrestling her down. Muraski would make it back up, only to have Tracy drag her down again. On the bottom, Muraski was actively looking for an arm-bar, but Tracy wisely began tagging her, and ultimately controlled most of the round.
Liz Tracy once again punched her way in to start the second round against Cheri Muraski. Tracy was able to get her hands going, but Muraski did answer back with a hard elbow on the feet. Muraski would commit to a driving single leg later in the round, and despite an impressive effort to finish it, Tracy showed some excellent balance, at one point hopping back on a single leg to fight off the takedown. Towards the end of the round it was Tracy who did score the takedown, after softening her opponent up with elbows.
Round three saw Cheri Muraski likely in need of a finish. It wasn’t in the cards, however. Liz Tracy continued to control the bulk of the action, cruising to a unanimous decision on the scorecards.
Liz Tracy def. Cheri Muraski by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Julia Avila vs. Marciea Allen
Just seconds into this 135lb bout, undefeated bantamweight Julia Avila blocked a front kick with her hand. Moments later, the fight was over. Though Avila showed no change in expression and kept on fighting, she’d broken her finger, the bone jutting through the skin — something she actually showed off for the camera after the cage side doctor waved off the bout. Good eye from the ref catching it, and Avila proved incredibly tough simply by not even flinching from the injury.
Marciea Allen def. Julia Avila by TKO (doctor’s stoppage), Round 1, 0:49
Pearl Gonzalez vs. Bárbara Acioly
After a heated exchange at Thursday’s weigh-ins, how would Gonzalez vs. Acioly play out? Pearl worked her jab and inside leg kicks early, while Acioly had a bit of a size advantage. The right had for Pearl landed several times; Acioly would later catch a kick, but Gonzalez stayed on her feet then scored a takedown of her own. Acioly defended with a guillotine, but Gonzalez stepped over her opponent, then moved to mount. Acioly would manage to get on top, while Pearl Gonzelz sunk in a triangle choke. She added some nasty elbows from the bottom the opened op Acioly on the top of her head. Gonzalez then sunk in an arm-bar and got the tap!
Pearl Gonzalez def. Barbara Acioly by submission (arm-bar), Round 1, 1:30
Pannie Kianzad vs. Bianca Daimoni
On a three fight skid, Pannie Kianzad certainly needed to get back in the win column. She was heavy on her opponent early, driving opponent Bianca Daimoni into the fence and controlling her. Daimoni landed a punch over the top off a break, while Pannie pressed forward with front kicks and combinations. Later in the round she’d initiate a clinch again, grinding on Daimoni. She landed a knee and uppercut while still in the clinch as the round wore down, then shot for a high double leg takedown in the final minute. While that would have been a strong finish to the round for Kianzad, Danimoni was able to stay standing.
Daimoni opened round two with a right, while Pannie answered by initiating a clinch and landing a knee. Daimoni answered back with some knees of her own. Pannie pressed forward with a combo, ending with a clinch. Simply put, Pannie Kianzad was winning the control game through the first half of the fight. Daimoni looked to land a liver kick, but was getting outworked. In the final minute, Kiazad dropped Daimoni with a blistering left hook, likely securing her a second round, but she couldn’t finish the Brazilian.
Both girls came out swinging early in the third, with Daimoni likely aware she needed a finish. Pannie had the angles and was able to execute some hit and run action, firing off combos then moving out of range. Just past the midway mark Kianzad clipped Daimoni with a right; a couple other strikes connected shortly after, backing the Bazilian fighter up. Kianzad was on a mission, and there was no question her losing streak had come to an end.
Pannie Kianzad def. Bianca Daimoni by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Sarah Kaufman vs. Katharina Lehner
In the main event, Canada’s Sarah Kaufman squared off against Germany’s Katharina Lehner with the vacant bantamweight title on the line. Both ladies came out ready to swing, Lehner with a combo followed by a kick early, then Kaufman with a right hand. Kaufman was finding a home for that right often, clipping Lehner’s nose several times. Lehner would pres forward about two minutes in, initiating a clinch against the fence. She couldn’t get Kaufman down, however, and they re-engaged in the middle. There, Kaufman would continue to get the better of the striking exchanges.
With round one in the books, Lehner was going to need to make some adjustments. Early in round two, however, Kaufman was still landing her right hand seemingly at will. When they did go to the clinch, Kaufman’s power was on display, and she was finally able to muscle Lehner to the ground. Lehner gave up her back briefly, then moved to half guard, trapping a leg to try to keep Kaufman from moving to mount. Kaufman was able to lock in a arm triangle choke, and things looked dire for Lehnar. Kaufman had it in tight, but Lehner signaled she was okay, and was eventually able to slip out as Kaufman moved to tighten her grip.
Round three saw Kaufman and Lehner trading early again, with both ladies landing shots. The pair would stand and trade through the first two minutes, with the exchanges fairly even. Kaufman would slip under a Lehner punch, but the takedown wasn’t there. However, another attempt with about ninety seconds was successful, and Kaufman was back in half-guard. Kaufman was able to take the back, and this time got her arm under the chin! With no way out, Lehner was forced to tap! With that, Sarah Kaufman earned the Invicta FC bantamweight title, the third title of her career and second in a major promotion. She also earned the first submission win of her career, and became the first fighter other than Cris Cyborg to hold gold in Strikeforce and Invicta FC.
Sarah Kaufman def. Katharina Lehner by submission (rear-naked choke), Round 3, 4:30
Invicta FC 29 Full Results:
Bantamweight Title Bout: Sarah Kaufman def. Katharina Lehner by submission (rear-naked choke), Round 3, 4:30
Bantamweight Bout: Pannie Kianzad def. Bianca Daimoni by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Flyweight Bout: Pearl Gonzalez def. Barbara Acioly by submission (arm-bar), Round 1, 1:30
Bantamweight Bout: Marciea Allen def. Julia Avila by TKO (doctor’s stoppage), Round 1, 0:49
Flyweight Bout: Liz Tracy def. Cheri Muraski by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 30-27)
Bantamweight Bout: Lisa Spangler def. Sarah Kleczka by unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Featherweight Bout: Macy Chiasson def. Allison Schmidt by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Strawweight Bout: Helen Peralta def. Cheyanne Vlismas by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)