Emily Ducote as soon as fought for Bellator gold, and now she’s nicely on her method to title competition in Invicta FC.

Ducote (9-6 MMA) headlined Invicta FC 40, the corporate’s first occasion since March 6 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, on Thursday night time in opposition to former UFC competitor Juliana Lima. Ducote obtained off to a gradual begin within the opening spherical of the strawweight scrap, then roared again to take the ultimate two rounds and thus the unanimous resolution in an entertaining battle.

The judges’ scores on the Police Athletic League in Kansas Metropolis, Kan. had been 29-28 throughout the board, as Ducote gained for the third time in her previous 4 fights.

“I assumed I’d be a bit extra aggressive, however I used to be higher tonight than she was,” Ducote (9-6 MMA) stated.

Lima (9-6 MMA) obtained the higher of issues within the opening spherical, as she used her size and attain benefit to her profit.

Someday within the second spherical, although, Ducote broke by means of and started persistently closing the gap. As soon as she did so, she started to implement her wrestling recreation. A takedown late within the second spherical turned issues in her favor for good, as she opened up a nasty lower underneath Lima’s proper eye with ground-and-pound offense from high place.

The third spherical noticed each fighters go for it, however Ducote had extra within the gasoline left within the tank. She threw calf kicks all through the battle, and so they noticeably slowed Lima by the ultimate spherical, as Ducote threw extra typically and landed the extra damaging pictures to seal the choice.

Ducote, who misplaced to Ilima-Lei Macfarlane in 2017 in a Bellator flyweight title battle in her highest-profile bout, took the win over a fighter with Lima’s title recognition as a stable step ahead.

“I knew she’s skilled, she fought a number of high-level individuals and that’s a degree the place I need to be at, so I’m going to take this lesson and be a bit extra aggressive.”

Lima has now dropped three fights in a row.

Within the night’s co-feature bout, Alesha Zappitella made her case for a shot on the vacant Invicta atomweight title with a formidable efficiency in opposition to Lindsay VanZandt, incomes a break up resolution on scores of 28-29, 29-27, and 30-27.

The Michigan-based Zappitella (7-2 MMA) used a robust floor recreation to stymie VanZandt (7-Four MMA) for a lot of the battle. VanZandt, for her half, landed the battle’s heaviest pictures within the standup, however each time it appeared she may be beginning to flip the battle in her favor, Zappitella reinstituted her recreation plan and took issues again to the mat, the place she regained management.

The night’s fights had been performed underneath open scoring guidelines. After the battle, Zappitella made clear she knew she was up on two scorecards, and thus her third spherical method was to easily ensure VanZandt couldn’t do something to steal the battle.

“Clearly, the open scoring gave me an enormous thought I had already gained,” Zappitella stated after her sixth profession resolution win. “I knew on the finish of the second spherical I had it gained.

“Going into this battle I had this was going to be the AW contenders battle so I hope this win exhibits sufficient that I can battle for the title.”

Full Invicta FC 40 outcomes:

  • Strawweight: Emily Ducote def. Juliana Lima through unanimous resolution (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
  • Alesha Zappitella def. Lindsey VanZandt through break up resolution (28-29, 29-27, 30-27)
  • Chelsea Chandler def. Liv Parker through submission (rear-naked choke) — Spherical 1, 1:05
  • Trisha Cicero def. Laura Gallardo through break up resolution (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
  • Genia Goodin def. Shelby Koren through unanimous resolution (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)