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Dern prevails in UFC debut, Hernandez & Dodson also earn victories

Read on for UFC 222 prelim results...


Highly touted strawweight newcomer Mackenzie Dern had a successful UFC debut at T-Mobile Arena Saturday, holding off a spirited charge from Ashley Yoder to take a close split decision win in UFC 222 prelim action.

Scores were 29-28 twice and 28-29 for Dern, now 6-0. Yoder falls to 5-4.

She gets it done in her Octagon debut! @MackenzieDern #UFC222
— UFC (@ufc) March 4, 2018

A wild exchange opened the bout and allowed Dern to bull Yoder into the fence. After a spell in the clinch, the two broke, and Dern went back to throwing haymakers in order to lock up again, but once more, Yoder was able to get free, and down the stretch she was able to land several solid punches and kicks.

Yoder continued to have success with her left hand in round two, even scoring a flash knockdown with it just before the midway point. Dern got in some shots as well, opening a cut over Yoder’s right eye, but her inability to get the fight to the mat was becoming problematic.

Dern kept pressing though, and with 1:45 left in the fight, she got her takedown and immediately took Yoder’s back. Yoder gamely fought out of a rear naked choke attempt, though, making it out of the round and the fight. Yet the late surge by the Arizonan was enough for her to take the fight on the scorecards.


Stepping in for the injured Bobby Green on a little over a week’s notice, Alexander Hernandez made quite the impression in his UFC debut, knocking out lightweight contender Beneil Dariush in the first round.

Hernandez came out blasting at the bell, dodging a touch of gloves to land a kick to the body, and he kept the heat on from there, with a flush left hand tagging Dariush and putting him down hard. As he followed up on his fallen foe, referee Jason Herzog shot in to stop the fight, with the official end coming 42 seconds into the first round.

San Antonio’s Hernandez moves to 9-1 with the win. The No. 12-ranked Dariush falls to 14-4-1.


Originally scheduled to face off in Brazil a month ago, bantamweight contenders John Dodson and Pedro Munhoz finally got to throw hands, and it was Dodson emerging with the three-round split decision victory.

Scores were 30-27, 29-28 and 28-29 for the No. 8-ranked Dodson, now 21-9. The No. 10-ranked Munhoz falls to 15-3 with 1 NC.

Back on track!@JohnDodsonMMA gets the win at #UFC222!
— UFC (@ufc) March 4, 2018

Dodson’s speed and movement put him in the lead early, as Munhoz’ charges were easily dodged and met with quick punches in return. But as the bout progressed, the steady pressure of the Brazilian began to get him closer to Dodson, and in the second frame, he landed several hard blows that went a long way in closing the scoring gap.

Some of the best exchanges in the fight took place in the third round, with Dodson holding the edge, but a late takedown by Munhoz made it another close round to score. Ultimately though, it was “The Magician” picking up his ninth UFC win.


Cuba’s Hector Lombard was disqualified in his middleweight bout against CB Dollaway due to two punches landed after the end of the first round that rendered the former Ultimate Fighter finalist unable to continue.

It was a fairly slow first round as both fighters calmly circled and looked for openings to exploit. Dollaway was the busier of the two, but Lombard landed the harder shots, the hardest of which was an illegal left hand after the horn that put the Arizonan on the deck and hurt him bad enough that Dollaway couldn’t continue, with referee Mark Smith rendering a disqualification verdict.

Dollaway moves to 18-9 with the win. Lombard falls to 34-9-1, 2 NC.


The final fight of Mike Pyle’s stellar MMA career didn’t go the way he planned it, as he was halted in the first round by Zak Ottow, but that does nothing to dent the legacy of “Quicksand,” who fought the best of the best since 1999.

“I loved every bit of it,” said the 42-year-old Pyle, who retires with a 27-14-1, after the welterweight bout.

Ottow (16-5) went on the attack from the start, leaving Pyle few openings to counter, and just before the midway point of the round, he tagged his foe with a hard right hand that put the Tennessee native on the deck. The follow-up shots by Ottow brought an end to the fight, with Herb Dean stepping in at the 2:34 mark.


Bantamweight prospect Cody Stamann picked up the biggest win of his career, taking a split decision over longtime contender Bryan Caraway.

Scores were 29-28 twice and 28-29 for Stamann, now 17-1. The No. 7-ranked Caraway, fighting for the first time since May 2016, falls to 21-9.

Caraway’s first several takedown attempts came up empty, but with 1:45 left, he finally put Stamann on the mat and put the Michigan native in deep trouble late in the round until the horn sounded.

Stamann was able to stay upright in the second, and when he wasn’t successfully defending takedowns, he was tagging Caraway with hard counters, pulling him even in the fight.

Both fighters got after it in the final frame, impressively trying to close the show. And while Stamann looked to be edging the action out, a sloppy takedown at the end was met by a Caraway guillotine attempt. Time ran out on Caraway, though, with the judges’ verdict favoring “The Spartan.”


Unbeaten Jordan Johnson spoiled the 205-pound debut of Adam Milstead, winning a three-round split decision in the opener.

Scores were 29-28 twice and 27-30 for Johnson, now 9-0. Milstead falls to 8-2 with 1 NC.

Milstead’s first round as a light heavyweight was a solid one, as he controlled the action at range and eluded Johnson’s attempts to take the fight to the mat, breaking one clinch with an elbow that clearly got Johnson’s attention.

Johnson evened the score in the second as he controlled the action in the clinch, and even with two restarts by referee Mark Smith, the San Diegan did more than enough work to set up a deciding third round.

An overhand right rattled Johnson early in the final frame, but Johnson shook it off and again used his grappling to good effect, putting Milstead on the deck with under two minutes to go. Milstead rose quickly, but Johnson kept him locked up against the fence until a late flurry from “The Prototype.”