A key women’s strawweight bout featuring former division champion Carla Esparza taking on Alexa Grasso co-headlines tonight’s UFC Mexico event.
Esparza (14-6) will be looking to build off the momentum of her unanimous decision victory over Virna Jandiroba from back in April.
‘The Cookie Monster’ has gone 4-3 since surrendering her title to Joanna Jędrzejczyk in March of 2015.
As for Alexa Grasso, the Mexican native is coming off a unanimous decision victory over former division title challenger Karolina Kowalkiewicz in her most recent Octagon appearance at UFC 238. That win improved Grasso’s overall record to 11-2 in mixed martial arts.
Round one begins and Alexa Grasso takes the center of the Octagon and pumps her jab. Esparza circles and then leaps in with a combination. Grasso resets and lands a combination. Carla Esparza with a good right hand. She steps in with a jab. Low kick from Esparza but Grasso counters nicely with a straight right. Esparza shoots in for a takedown and gets it. Grasso looks to reverse the position and wind up in mount. Somehow Esparza avoids the sweep and winds up in top position. She begins working from full guard and landing punches. Grasso pushes off the hips and gets back to her feet. She just misses with a kick. Esparza fires off a kick of her own but it falls well short. Grasso shoots in and presses Carla Esparza against the cage. The former champ reverses the position and lands some shots. Esparza scores a takedown and look to lock up a submission. Grasso avoids and eventually escapes back to her feet. She lands a good shot before the horn sounds to end round one.
Round two of the UFC Mexico co-main event begins and Carla Epsarza leaps forward with a superman punch that is way off. Still, she closes the distance enough to score an early takedown. She immediately begins working some shots to the body of Grasso. Alexa looks for an armbar but it is not there. Esparza with a nice right hand. She continues to land punches. Body and then the head. She lands a nice forearm and then another. Two minutes remain. Esparza takes the back of Alexa Grasso but the local talent lands a sweep and then gets back to her feet. Esparza with a kick and Grasso answers with a straight punch up the middle. Both ladies land good shots inside. Carla Esparza shoots in and lands another timely takedown. Twenty seconds remain. Esparza works some punches before the horn sounds to end the round.
Round three of the UFC Mexico co-main event begins and Grasso just misses with a right hand after Carla missed with a low kick. Esparza with a straight right. She circles along the cage. Grasso lands a left. Esparza is hurt. She staggers in retreat. Grasso needs to come forward and attack here. But she doesn’t. Carla attempts to clinch and goes for a takedown. Grasso locks up and armbar. This is deep. She transitions. Somehow Carla is gutting this out. My god! She escapes. That was just nasty. Carla Esparza is now on top and working punches. There is no way that arm can be at 100% after that. Under one minute remains. These ladies are trading shots. Carla from the top and Grasso off her back. Alexa Grasso gets back to her feet and lands a combination. They are both throwing. What a fight! The horn sounds to end round three.
— UFC (@ufc) September 22, 2019
Official UFC Mexico Result: Carla Esparza def. Alexa Grasso (28-28, 29-28, 29-28)
Who would you like to see Carla Esparza fight next following her majority decision victory over Alexa Grasso at tonight’s UFC Mexico event? Sound off in the comments section PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com September 21, 2019