UFC Vegas 92: Vanessa Demopoulos Takes Close Decision Over Emily Ducote Despite Injured Arm

Vanessa Demopoulos and Emily Ducote, UFC Vegas 92
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - MAY 18: (R-L) Vanessa Demopoulos punches Emily Ducote in a strawweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on May 18, 2024 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Strawweights Emily Ducote, a former Invicta champ and Bellator title challenger (the latter at flyweight), and ex-LFA champ Vanessa Demopoulos kicked off the UFC Vegas 92 card on Saturday.

Both ladies were coming off single wins and looking to make it back-to-back victories; “Lil Monster” Demopoulos was 1-4 in her last five, Ducote 2-2 in the UFC to date.

Early on, Demopoulos flashed some heavy leather, loading up on her punches. Ducote was the more pinpoint, technical striker, looking to sneak in between Demopoulos’ looping blows. Aside from the work up top, both fighters traded leg kicks throughout the opening minutes of round one; just under three minutes in, Ducote landed a right hand that stood as the most significant strike of the fight to that point. Coming out of the round, Demopoulos was showing a bit of swelling by her right eye, but the fight was still very much in the air.

Round two started with a quicker pace, with Demopoulos going all out with her attacks, taking one to land one. She would catch Ducote with a head kick at least partially; a kick was nearly caught a short time later. Ducote still found success with her right hand, but she soon had a trail of blood trickling down from one eye kick. Demopoulos, meanwhile, fired her left kick to the body, a blow she would land several times in the second frame.

Come round three it was still very much anyone’s fights. Ducote chopped at the legs of her opponent and continued to find success with her right hand. Later in the round, Demopoulos connected with a straight right of her own, rocking Ducote and forcing her to backpedal. That might have swayed the balance in her favor, but late in the frame, Ducote would get the fight down, and settle in on top. The Invicta FC alum didn’t have much time to make things happen, but would finish in a dominant position, sending the bout to the judges.

Two judges, however, awarded Vanessa Demopoulos the split decision win; after the bout, she revealed she had sustained an injury to her right arm just days before the fight, then jumped into Paul Felder’s arms.

Official Result: Vanessa Demopoulos def. Emily Ducote by split decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)