“The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil” Season 1 alum Renee Forte bullied the Englishman with punches and takedowns, as he secured a unanimous decision in their lightweight encounter at UFC on Fuel TV 7 “Barao vs. McDonald” on Saturday at Wembley Arena in London. Forte (8-2, 1-1 UFC) swept the scorecards by 29-28, 29-28 and 30-27 counts.
In his first appearance since his ill-fated encounter with Edson Barboza more than a year ago, Etim (15-5, 6-5 UFC) was on the defensive from moment one. Forte nearly put him away in the second round, as he stunned the 27-year-old Team Kaobon representative with a searing combination, trailed him to the canvas and dropped some heavy artillery. Etim reclaimed guard and recovered his wits but never found his footing in the fight.
‘Last Call’ Castillo Outpoints Sass
Airtight submission defense, a suffocating top game and ground-and-pound with purpose spurred Team Alpha Male’s Danny Castillo to a unanimous decision over Paul Sass in an undercard tilt at 155 pounds. All three cageside judges ruled on favor of Castillo (15-5, 5-2 UFC): 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28.
Sass (13-2, 3-2 UFC) nearly locked up a flying triangle in the opening moments, only to have Castillo answer with a powerful slam. The British submission ace tried every trick in his book, from more traditional triangle chokes to heel hooks. Nothing caught Castillo. The Californian remained alert inside Sass’ notorious guard, peppering him with punches, hammerfists and elbows.
Castillo has won four of his last five bouts.
Ogle Hands Grispi Fourth Straight Defeat
“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 15 alum Andy Ogle recorded his seventh victory in eight outings, as he took a unanimous decision from the talented but enigmatic Josh Grispi in a preliminary featherweight duel. All three cageside judges saw it for Ogle (9-2, 1-1 UFC): 29-28, 29-28 and 30-27.
Ogle did his best work in the third round, where he wounded the 24-year-old Massachusetts native with a liver kick, defended against a guillotine choke and set up shop in guard, pelting Grispi (14-5, 0-4 UFC) with heavy ground-and-pound. Ogle struck for another takedown in the closing seconds, sealing the American’s fate.
A winner in 14 of his first 15 professional fights, Grispi has now lost four in a row -- a precipitous fall for a man once considered one of the top 10 featherweights in the world.
‘Kong’ Watson Stops Nedkov
Former British Association of Mixed Martial Arts champion Tom Watson stopped the previously unbeaten Stanislav Nedkov on second-round punches in an entertaining and competitive preliminary middleweight scrap. Watson (16-5, 1-1 UFC) finished it 4:42 into round two.
Nedkov (12-1, 1-1 UFC) had his chances, particularly late in the first frame, where he staggered and floored the Brit, nearly ending it with hammerfists on the ground. Watson survived to see a second round and resumed his knee-heavy assault on the Bulgarian’s body. Nedkov delivered a couple of takedowns, but his failure to control his foe on the mat proved costly. Watson returned to his feet, increased the intensity and volume of his strikes in close quarters and put away the Sengoku veteran with a beautiful four-punch combination and knee to the body.
Lee Gets Defensive, Denies Tezuka
Occasional strikes from the clinch and hearty takedown defense carried Englishman Vaughan Lee to a unanimous decision over Japanese import Motonobu Tezuka in a forgettable undercard bout at 135 pounds. Lee (13-8-1, 2-2 UFC) swept the scorecards by identical 30-27 marks.
Though his successes were few, Tezuka (19-6-4, 0-2 UFC) was relentless in pursuit of takedowns. He pinned Lee against the cage repeatedly, fishing for single-legs while eating knees to the body and short punches to the head. Lee remained patient and steadfast, content to rack up points while Tezuka expended his energy in close quarters.
Harris Outduels ‘Useless’ GomezJudo black belt Phil Harris won for the sixth time in seven appearances, as he captured a unanimous decision from former Tachi Palace Fights champion Ulysses Gomez in a preliminary flyweight matchup. All three cageside judges scored it for Harris (22-10, 1-1 UFC): 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28.
Gomez (9-4, 0-2 UFC) seemed content to fight at a distance, relying heavily on his leg kicks. They served their purpose inside the Octagon but failed to make enough of an impression on the scorecards. Harris shut down his foe’s advances in the clinch, countered effectively and delivered stronger, cleaner blows to the head and body. Gomez has lost three of his last five bouts.