Fight Facts: Invicta FC 35

By: Jay Pettry
Jun 11, 2019

Fight Facts is a breakdown of all of the interesting information and cage curiosities on every card, with some puns, references and portmanteaus to keep things fun. These deep stat dives delve into the numbers, providing historical context and telling the stories behind those numbers.

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Invicta Fighting Championships on Friday in Kansas City, Kansas, wrapped up its inaugural flyweight tournament with a rematch as close as its predecessor. Invicta 35 featured a pioneer making her resurgence after a lengthy layoff, an apparent cross-promotional deal paying dividends and two women making their pro debuts. NOT SURE THAT IS A REWARD: By taking a close decision in a rematch against DeAnna Bennett, Karina Rodriguez won the second tournament in promotional history. Brianna Van Buren won the first, as she took the Invicta Phoenix Rising strawweight tournament. After winning this tournament, Rodriguez will next face flyweight queen Vanessa Porto.

LITTLE COLUMN A, LITTLE COLUMN B: After suffering her fourth loss under the Invicta banner, Bennett is now tied with four other fighters for the second-most losses in company history. She is also still tied with three other fighters for the second-most wins in company history with six.

WHAT IS THIS, A CENTER FOR ANTS?: With Viviane Pereira and Alesha Zappitella measuring in at a total of 119 inches -- or 9-foot-11 -- they combined for the most diminutive fight in Invicta history.

THIS DEAL IS GETTING WORSE ALL THE TIME: In an apparent cross-promotional deal with Invicta and Rizin Fighting Federation, the two organizations have recently shared fighters. Invicta atomweight champ Jinh Yu Frey went over to compete at Rizin 15 and lost a decision. Rizin standout Kanako Murata fought at this event and tapped Liana Ferreira Pirosin.

A LITTLE LIGHT ON THE STRANGLING: Lisa Spangler remained unbeaten when she topped Katharina Lehner on the scorecards. Nicknamed “The Strangler,” all four of her wins have come by decision.

FROM MATCHMAKER TO FACE BREAKER: In finishing Faith McMah with strikes, former Invicta matchmaker Kaitlin Young earned her second knockout inside the Invicta cage, tying 11 other fighters for the fourth-most knockouts in company history. Only Aspen Ladd (three), Megan Anderson (four) and Cristiane Justino (five) have more.

FOREVER YOUNG: The win was Young’s third in row and marks her longest such streak since she started her career 4-0. She also brought her win-loss record above .500 for the first time since 2012.

IT’S A YOUNG WOMAN’S GAME: After winning by knockout, eight of Young’s 10 wins have now come from stoppage due to strikes. Along with one draw, her losses are equally distributed: three losses by knockout, three by submission and another three on the scorecards.

BRUISED AND BATTERED: Young picked up the victory with 68 seconds left in the third round, earning the second-latest finish in Invicta featherweight history. Only Justino’s fourth-round finish of Marloes Coenen at Invicta 6 came later.

LIKE MEN’S HEAVYWEIGHT: Their encounter originally scheduled for the featherweight division, Young dispatched McMah in the third round. In the featherweight division and above, the finish rate is substantially higher than it is in other weight classes, with just under 70 percent of all bouts at 145 pounds or higher ending before the final bell.

GOTTA HAVE FAITH: McMah missed weight by 0.4 pounds for her featherweight clash with Young. This was not the first time she has come in heavy for an Invicta fight, as she previously missed the bantamweight limit by 2.5 pounds before facing and ultimately losing to Irene Aldana at Invicta 19. McMah became the sixth Invicta fighter to ever miss weight more than once and the third to fail to make weight at two different weight classes, joining Bennett and Pam Sorenson. SOMETHING TO PROVE: Across all of the Invicta fights in which two women were making their pro debuts, the bout between Genia Goodin and Valerie Wong was only the fifth to go the distance. The finish rate for those fights sits over 64 percent, substantially higher than the promotion’s average stoppage rate of 47.4 percent.

NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN: Coming into Invicta FC 35, Zappitella (six fights) and Brittney Victoria Grizzelle (three fights) had never been defeated, Pirosin had never been stopped (eight fights) and Lehner (eight fights) and McMah (nine fights) had never lost consecutive bouts.

Sherdog contributing editor Jay Pettry is an attorney and a statistician. Writing about MMA since he started studying the “Eminem Curse” in 2012 and working for Vice Sports and Combat Docket along the way, he put together many fight result and entrance music databases to better study the sport. You can find him on twitter at @jaypettry.

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