Read on for UFC Lincoln main card results...
Fighters heading in opposite directions collided in the penultimate fight of the night at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Saturday as Andre Fili carried his tidy two-fight winning streak into a showdown with former lightweight contender Michael “The Menace” Johnson, who was looking to halt a three-fight skid.
The two spent the entire first round trading shots and smiles on the feet, Johnson landing the more telling blows, but Fili countering with greater volume. In the second, the Team Alpha Male product turned a well-timed takedown into an extended run of back control, threatening with a rear-naked choke. While Johnson was eventually able to free himself and finish the round in top position, Fili was close to getting the finish and clearly got the better of things in the middle stanza.
In the third, Fili once again did a great job of timing his lone takedown attempt, briefly putting Johnson on the ground and threatening to take his back, though he didn’t get there. When they were standing, it was the same as it had been throughout the contest, with Johnson connecting on the heavier blows and Fili throwing more.
The fight went to the scorecards and the final tallies were quite different, with one judge scoring the bout 30-27 for Fili and the other two seeing things 29-28 for Johnson, awarding “The Menace” his first victory in the featherweight division.
The strawweights brought the smoke on Saturday night in Lincoln, Nebraska.
For 15 minutes, Cortney Casey and Angela Hill traded punches and kicks, with a couple takedowns and one armbar attempt mixed in for good measure, neither woman interested in conceding ground or letting off the gas. Every time one would land, the other would counter and each exchange featured two, three or four shots going each way.
While Hill was often the one pressing forward, Casey did a good job to fire back and neutralize her aggression, forcing Hill to showcase her improving takedown defense sporadically through the first two rounds. In the third, they opted to just stand and trade, firing an assortment of strikes in close and in space right to the final horn.
The judges were split on the decision, with Casey coming out on the happy side of the verdict after landing on the wrong end of the same result in each of her last two fights. With the win, “Cast Iron” moves to 8-6 overall, with Hill dropping to 8-5 overall and just 2-5 inside the Octagon with the loss.
Bryan Barberena spoiled Jake Ellenberger’s Nebraska homecoming, handing “The Juggernaut” his fourth straight stoppage loss on Saturday night.
The fight began with the welterweights feeling each other out in the center of the cage, but when they started trading, Barberena clipped Ellenberger and sent him to the canvas. While he got back to his feet, his legs were never quite back underneath him. After a clubbing right hand to the temple, Ellenberger was down for good. Barberena followed up with punches on the ground and the referee stepped in to stop the fight.
Following the contest, Ellenberger announced that he was retiring from the sport, ending his career at home to a roaring ovation, finishing his career with a 31-15 record. As for “Bam Bam,” he gets back into the win column in impressive fashion and pushes his record to 14-5 in the process.
46 pro fights. 21 inside the Octagon.
Deiveson Figueiredo is officially a contender in the flyweight division. Taking a sizable step up in competition to face former title challenger John Moraga, the unbeaten Brazilian showed he’s a serious threat by collecting his fourth straight UFC victory and second consecutive stoppage.
The two went toe-to-toe in the first, trading punches and getting into a solid grappling exchange on the ground, with Figueiredo getting the better of things, scoring with strikes from top position and taking Moraga’s back in the closing seconds of the round.
In the second, he upped the pressure and the intensity, flooring Moraga with a tight left hook. Clinched along the fence, Figueiredo blasted home a body shot that crumpled the perennial contender and brought the fight to a close.
Now owning the longest winning streak in the flyweight division and sporting a perfect 15-0 record overall, Figueiredo should find himself in the Top 10 once the rankings update next week.
Eryk Anders entered as the biggest favorite on Saturday’s fight card, but early in the contest, it was Tim Williams who was having all the success.
“The South Jersey Strangler” took advantage of Anders’ sluggish start, connecting with several good kicks and clean punches before taking the fight to the ground and taking the former Alabama linebacker’s back in the final seconds of the frame.
Anders came to life a little more in the second, letting loose with his hands and keeping Williams backpedaling. While the volume wasn’t there, the power was as “Ya Boi” needed just a couple clean shots to open a cut under Williams’ left eye and make him be a little more hesitant with his own offense.
Both men came out ready to fire in the second, but it was Anders who got things started with a bang, countering a low kick with a clean left hand that put Williams on the canvas. The veteran got back to his feet and the two traded strikes throughout the next several minutes, reaching the final 60 seconds locked in a close battle.
But that’s when Anders ended things in a flash. After Williams slipped to the ground and looked to stand, Anders timed his strike perfectly and planted his shin across Williams’ chin, bringing the fight to a sudden halt.
This was a solid rebound performance for Anders, who suffered the first loss of his career in February, but moves to 11-1 with the victory. Unfortunately for Williams, his strongest effort to date in the Octagon goes for naught as he drops his second straight and falls to 15-5 overall with the loss.