Coming into the fight, Penne and Sugiyama were ranked unanimously as the No. 1 and No. 2 fighter in the atomweight division (105lbs), so it was a rare treat to see the first ever champion crowned with the two best in the weight class squaring off.
As soon as the fight began, Penne displayed her dominance and power, whipping Sugiyama around from the clinch and applying pressure on the ground. In the second round moving in from the Muay Thai clinch, Penne’s power actually put Sugiyama on the mat, but in a scramble the Japanese fighter was able to slip under and get a takedown.
It didn’t take long however for Penne to pull her leg up around Sugiyama’s head and lock on a triangle choke. Sugiyama pressed down trying to take the pressure off, but for all her work, Penne just tightened the hold as she continued to swivel her hips and lock in her legs.
A few moments later Sugiyama tapped out, and Penne celebrated as the new Invicta FC atomweight champion.
“I’m up in the clouds right now,” said Penne after the win. “I put a lot of pressure on myself, but I train with the best and they’re so supportive and they kept me focused.”
Shayna Baszler made a strong statement for her case to get a shot at the first ever Invicta FC 135lb title with her dominant performance over Sarah D’Alelio on Saturday. Baszler controlled the action on the mat throughout the first five minutes, while also opening a cut on her opponent’s head when working from the back.
The second round didn’t take nearly as long to develop after Baszler forced the action back to the mat and quickly locked on a rear naked choke that forced a submission from D’Alelio. Baszler now has to stand atop the list of fighters that could compete for the 135lb title, which may be introduced at Invicta’s next show in early 2013.
One of the biggest upsets of the night came courtesy of Vanessa Porto who won a unanimous decision over former top ranked women’s fighter Tara LaRosa in her Invicta FC debut.
While there were several great fights on the Invicta FC 3 card, a back and forth battle between Team Jackson fighter Michelle Waterson and Lacey Schuckman helped launch the main card in exciting fashion.
Both fighters came close to finishes throughout the first two rounds, and when the final judges’ totals were read it was Waterson who came out on top via split decision.
INVICTA FC 3 FULL RESULTS:
Jessica Penne def. Naho Sugiyama by submission (triangle choke) at 2:20, R2
Shayna Baszler def. Sarah D’Alelio by submission (rear naked choke) at :37, R2
Leslie Smith def. Kaitlin Young by TKO (punches) at 2:19, R2
Barb Honchak def. Aisling Daly by unanimous decision
Vanessa Porto def. Tara LaRosa by unanimous decision
Cat Zingano def. Raquel Pennington by submission (rear naked choke) at 2:32, R2
Michelle Waterson def. Lacy Schuckman by split decision
Julia Budd def. Danielle West by TKO at 2:32, R1
Carla Esparza def. Lynn Alvarez by TKO at 2:53, R1
Joanne Calderwood def. Ashley Cummins by KO at 3:13, R1
Stephanie Frausto def. Amy Davis by submission (guillotine choke) at :48, R1
Jessamyn Duke def. Marciea Allen by submission (armbar) at 4:42, R1
Tecia Torres def. Kaiyana Rain by unanimous decision
Ediene Gomes def. Katalina Malangahu by submission (rear naked choke) at 4:19, R1