Invicta FC 25 results: Yana Kunitskaya flawless vs. Raquel Pa'aluhi to win bantamweight title

Yana Kunitskaya is the Invicta FC bantamweight champion, and this time there is no question about it.

Kunitskaya (10-3-1), competing in her third consecutive title fight, firmly held Raquel Pa’aluhi (6-6) in check, en route to a clean sweep unanimous-decision win to claim the vacant 135-pound championship in the Invicta FC 25 headliner.

The event took place at Tachi Palace Casino in Lemoore, Calif., and streamed on UFC Fight Pass.

The title came up for grabs after previous champion Tonya Evinger left to challenge Cris Cyborg for the then-vacant UFC featherweight title at UFC 214, a bout won by Cyborg via TKO.

Kunitskaya had challenged Evinger twice before for the title, initially scoring a victory in their first bout, which was later overturned after Evinger appealed the result because of in-fight instructions from the referee leading to an armbar submission. There was no controversy in the rematch, however, as Evinger choked out Kunitskaya at Invicta FC 22 in March.

After all that, Kunitskaya lays claim to the gold after a dominant performance.

For 25 minutes, Kunitskaya dominated every time she engaged in the clinch with Pa’aluhi, using her position to wear her down and land shots from the inside. When they separated and banged, Kunitskaya won there, as well.

Pa’aluhi’s best chance to turn things around was to get the fight to the mat, though she couldn’t quite succeed. There was just one moment, near the end of the fourth round, that Pa’aluhi threw Kunitskaya to the ground and trapped her in a head-and-arm. She went for broke and squeezed tight, though the bell ended the action.

But overall, there simply was no question who the better fighter was on this night. Kunitskaya is the champion – finally.

Lehner calls her shot, finishes Conners by TKO

Katharina Lehner was specific in her prediction before facing Alexa Conners: “I will break her and win by TKO.”

Lehner was right on point.

Lehner (6-0) used high volume and a variety of punching combinations to wear down Conners (3-2) before landing a straight left hand to the temple that dropped her opponent, resulting in a TKO win 4:21 into the first round.

Aside from missing the 135-pound bantamweight limit, it was a tremendous Invicta FC debut to keep Lehner undefeated.

Robbins staves off early onslaught, earns quick submission win

Kali Robbins was in all sorts of trouble. And then suddenly it was over.

Robbins took a barrage of punches from Sharon Jacobson before she was hip-tossed to the mat. Once there Robbins (5-0) immediately went into jiu-jitsu mode, climbing her legs and grabbing a hold of an arm until she was belly down and submitted Jacobson (4-2) with an armbar just 42 seconds into the first round.

It was a remarkable turn of events that happened so fast.

“I’ve been waiting for this opportunity,” said Robbins, competing in her first fight in nearly 18 months. “Everything has been building up. I knew she was going to come at me. I was sincerely doubting myself before I came out here. This couldn’t have been better.”

The only damper to Robbins’ win was that she came in over the 115-pound strawweight limit, though she expressed sincere remorse afterward.

“I’ll come back better than this,” she said, “and I won’t ever do that to another opponent again.”

Complete Invicta FC 25 results:

For more on Invicta FC 25, visit the MMA Events section of the site.

Filed under: Featured, News
Source: MMA Junkie

With Evinger's title vacated for UFC 214 shot, lineup set for Invicta FC 25: Pa'aluhi vs. Kunitskaya

With its bantamweight champion off to go after the UFC’s featherweight title on Saturday, Invicta FC will crown a new 135-pound champ next month. The lineup now is set for the card.

Evinger vacated Invicta’s 135-pound title to fight ex-Invicta FC 145-pound champ Cristiane Justino at UFC 214 on Saturday for the vacant women’s featherweight title. So Raquel Pa’aluhi (6-5) will take on Yana Kunitskaya (9-3-1) for the now-vacant bantamweight title in the Invicta FC 25 main event. Another title will be on the line in the co-main event when Livia Renata Souza (10-1) takes on Jodie Esquibel (6-2) for the vacant strawweight title.

Invicta FC 25 takes place Aug. 31 at Tachi Palace Casino in Lemoore, Calif. The entire card will stream on UFC Fight Pass. And that card now is complete with a total of seven more bouts below the two title tilts.

Alexa Conners (4-1) will meet Katharina Lehner (5-0) at bantamweight; Sharon Jacobson (3-1) meets Kali Robbins (4-0) at strawweight; atomweights Alyse Anderson (3-0) and Shino VanHoose (5-5) will square off; in bantamweight action, Kelly McGill-Velasco (2-1) fights Amberlynn Orr (0-1), and Yaya Rincon (1-0) takes on Stephanie Egger (2-1); Cheri Muraski (3-0) fights Tracy Cortez (0-0) at flyweight; and debuting atomweights Ashley Medina (0-0) and Jillian DeCoursey (0-0) are booked to open the card.

Kunitskaya (9-3-1) will enter after a pair of fights with Evinger. Kunitskaya originally defeated Evinger by submission in Nov. 2016 but later had the result overturned because of a controversial call by the referee. They rematched in March, with Evinger winning by second-round submission.

Pa’aluhi (6-5) will enter having won four of her last five fights, including most recently a rear-naked choke finish in January at Invicta FC 21. She will enter trying to follow the footsteps of UFC champion Max Holloway to bring a second MMA title to Waianae, Hawaii.

Souza (10-1) will enter her bout against Esquibel (6-2) looking to reclaim the 115-pound title she lost in a split decision to Hill in May 2016. Souza rebounded with an impressive TKO finish of Ayaka Hamasaki in March at Invicta FC 22.

Esquibel, who has won three of her last four, had her most recent fight on the same night, defeating DeAnna Bennett by split decision.

The complete Invicta FC 25 lineup includes:

  • Raquel Pa’aluhi vs. Yana Kunitskaya – for vacant bantamweight title
  • Jodie Esquibel vs. Livia Renata Souza – for vacant strawweight title
  • Alexa Conners Katharina Lehner
  • Sharon Jacobson vs. Kali Robbins
  • Alyse Anderson vs. Shino VanHoose
  • Kelly McGill-Velasco vs. Amberlynn Orr
  • Stephanie Egger vs. Yaya Rincon
  • Tracy Cortez vs. Cheri Muraski
  • Jillian DeCoursey vs. Ashley Medina

For more on Invicta FC 25, visit the MMA Rumors section of the site.

Filed under: News
Source: MMA Junkie