The seventeenth Strikeforce Challengers event took place tonight from the new home of the Challengers series, the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada. Airing live on Showtime the card was headlined by the first ever trilogy bout between Roger Bowling and Bobby Voelker.
The main card opened up with an exciting middleweight bout between Donald Stallings and Adlan Amagov that ended in a split decision on the judges scorecard. Stallings hung tough in the fight but Amagov was just too much and two of the three judges called it in favor of Russian.
The women were up next as Liz Carmouche looked to build off her performance against Marloes Coenen against the former champion, Sarah Kaufman. This fight was contested mainly on the feet and it was the jab of Kaufman that was the difference. The bout went the distance with Kaufman leaving Carmouche battered and bloody, winner a unanimous decision.
Ovince St. Preux improved to 5-0 with Strikeforce by winning his eighth in a row tonight against the undefeated Joe Cason. The TKO should have earned OSP a ticket to the big show for his next bout.
The night’s co-main event featured heavyweights Devin Cole against the late replacement Shawn Jordan. Replacing Lavar Johnson, Jordan was a very game opponent, but in the third round he missed submission attempt that likely cost him the fight.
Closing the night out was the third bout and rubber match between welterweights Roger Bowling and Bobby Voelker. Bowling looked very fast in the opening round but in the second round it was Voelker who had man the proper changes between rounds. A knee rocked Bowling and Voelker pounced on him and forced the referee to step in an end the fight. The win for Voelker gives him the best two of three in the trilogy and possibly a shot at the vacant welterweight title.
170 lbs. bout: Roger Bowling vs. Bobby Voelker – Bobby Voelker by 2nd rd. TKO
265 lbs. bout: Devin Cole vs. Shawn Jordan – Devin Cole by Unanimous Decision
205 lbs. bout: Joe Cason vs. Ovince St. Preux – Ovince St. Preux by 1st rd. TKO
Women’s (135 lbs) bout: Liz Carmouche vs. Sarah Kaufman – Sarah Kaufman by U.D. (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
185 lbs. bout: Ronald Stallings vs. Adlan Amagov – Adlan Amagov by Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 29-28)
205 lbs. bout: Lionel Lanham vs. T.J. Cook – T.J. Cook by 1st rd. TKO
185 lbs. bout: Anthony Smith vs. Ben Lagman – Anthony Smith by 2nd rd. KO
155 lbs. bout: Maka Watson vs. Bill Cooper – Bill Cooper defeated by 2nd rd. submission (rear-naked choke)
185 lbs. bout: Sterling Ford vs. Brian McLaughlin – Sterling Ford by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 30-27).
Get more great MMA news, recaps and analysis over at MMAValor.com