The women’s flyweight division has a new contender.
Former title challenger and top contender Jessica Eye faced Cynthia Calvillo in the UFC on ESPN 10 main event on Saturday in Las Vegas trying to work her way back to a title fight. After missing weight in two of her last three fights in the strawweight division, Calvillo moved up to the 125-pound weight class to take on Eye.
“Evil” Eye has struggled with making weight in her last two bouts. She moved down to the flyweight division in January 2018 and reeled off three consecutive wins earning a title shot. She was defeated by champion Valentina Shevchenko but rebounded in her next outing against Viviane Araújo at UFC 245 in December. She missed weight for that bout and came in a quarter pound heavy at Friday’s weigh-ins.
Despite struggling with her weight cut, Eye was the aggressor in the opening round. She moved forward landing her jab and counter right hands. Calvillo connected with two head kicks but Eye was able to absorb them both.
In the second frame, Calvillo made adjustments. She picked up the pace and mixed in takedowns. After securing a takedown, Calvillo was able to take Eye’s back. She spent the remainder of the round peppering Eye with punches and looking to set up a rear-naked choke.
Calvillo was able to get Eye to the canvas late in he third frame and quickly took the fight to the ground in the fourth round. Midway through the frame, Eye scrambled back to her feet and connected with right hands. Heading into the final round, Eye was going to need to get the finish to win.
Calvillo won the exchanges in the fifth frame. She changed levels and put Eye on her back again. Eye was able to get to her feet in the closing moments of the round but it was too little too late. All three judges scored the fight for Calvillo.
“I feel great especially for putting on a performance like that with like a short amount of training. I understand we’re going through crazy times but it just feels amazing to be able to do this during this time,” said Calvillo after the win.
“I felt great. It’s my first time doing a five-round fight but I train super hard,” she said. “I always outwork everyone. It’s my first time doing that, so I’m really proud of myself that I know I’ll be able to push and get more energetic as the rounds come.”
Calvillo entered the bout ranked No. 10 in the strawweight division. With the win over the top flyweight contender, she’ll be highly ranked in next week’s rankings. No. 2 ranked Katlyn Chookagian called out Calvillo immediately after the fight.
“I’m down to fight everybody. Just keep me busy,” Calvillo said. “Bring it on. Let’s do it.”