Bout #1: Fogle vs. Marie – Triangle Queen
LFC27 [0-0] led off with a very fit looking Lauren Fogle [0-0] taking on a last-minute replacement and first-timer Jesabella Marie [0-0]. It was obvious that Fogle, without the aid of a knee brace, was in fighting form, showing off some power kicks that took down the ‘Fire Queen’ early in the first round. Fogle fights best when she is comfortable and in control, and it showed. As much as Marie tried to mount an attack, briefly maneuvering into top position, beating an in shape Fogle was just not going to happen.
The improved leg game of Fogle spelled the end for the rookie in the first round. Lauren submitted her foe via a triangle choke, earning her some redemption after suffering a humiliating loss by submission to Andreea Vladoi [0-0] at LFC25 [0-0]. The LFC is about being matched against opponents who do not make life easy on a fighter; going forward, Fogle will have to prove herself against an elite opponent. As impressive as this was, a top 10 opponent is needed for this veteran of the LFC.
Bout #2: Hexxx vs. Ink – Blotted Out
Jenevieve Hexxx [0-0], making her return to the LFC, faces off against Bella Ink [0-0]. Ink made her debut at LFC26 [0-0], losing by submission to Jolene Hexx [0-0]. This fight started off with both women trying to establish their stand-up game. Very slight remnants of Hexxx’s former style of fighting remain. She no longer relies on her Psychic abilities to wade through a match, but now fights more conventionally as was demonstrated in the first round. She and Ink tried to box for a short time before exchanging leg holds, pushing the pace hard for a quick conclusion that eluded both of them.
Round 2 started the same, both fighters intent on boxing their way to dominance, but a determined Ink first trapped Hexxx in a vicious leg lock, before turning her around and taking full control of Jenevieve’s head, submitting her with authority by a rear naked choke. Ink appeared the veteran of the two, having made the most of her training and her recent loss to an experienced champion. Ink has made a strong case for being on the card at the next event, LFC28.
Bout #3: Tajima vs Valentine – Path to Redemption
Two wrestlers lock up in the third fight on the card. Tomiko Tajima [0-0], fresh from the Booty Camp and full of swagger, takes on the powerfully built Jenny Valentine [0-0]. Tomiko came out aggressively with a pair of illegal strikes to the face. Valentine responded with an illegal kick to the groin that put an end to the rough play. Valentine, emboldened by winning her first fight in the LFC at the last event, took control of the round and pushed Tajima around, getting the best of the exchanges.
Round two was all Valentine. ‘The Temptress’ did not show any of the promise she had in her first fight against Shelly DaSilva [0-0] at LFC26 [0-0]. Tomiko appeared in danger the whole round. Did fighting just seven weeks earlier take too much out of her?
Tomiko finally started to harass Valentine in the final round, jumping on her back and looking for the choke. The opportunity to submit her rival was there, but Tomiko was not able to push through, Valentine finished strongly, earning a unanimous decision. Valentine, capitalizing on facing rookies, is now on a two match winning streak and on the path to redemption after going 0 and 3 in the LFC.
Bout #4: Hexx vs. Garcia – European Meltdown
Hoisting the European title belt at ringside, Jolene Hexx [0-0] entered the ring first and watched as Monica Garcia [0-0], confident as ever, strutted into the ring for the co-main event. This was fighter vs. fighter, champion vs. ex-champion, and reputation vs. reputation. Monica started very strong and looked to dominate the first round. Jolene, appeared more subdued than usual, had difficulty establishing her style against a heavier opponent. The opener goes to Garcia.
Jolene spent much of the second round wrapped up between Monica’s powerful legs. The ‘Flowerbomb’ was full of fight, hoping to erase the bitter sting of two tough title losses. Showing her frustration after the round, Hexx was slow to break and when she finally did, kicked the acting coach of the black team, her old rival, Andreea Vladoi [0-0]. If she was looking to earn herself a disqualification, that may have been enough, but to make it a no-brainer, Hexx knocked down the interim Prez of the league, Holly Mei [0-0], who came into the ring to keep order. The win awarded to Garcia via disqualification.
As exciting as it was to see so much post-round enmity, there was more sadness to it than anything. Nobody wants to see a fighter of Jolene’s caliber disqualified for not keeping her emotions in check, regardless of the back and forth taking place in the ring. Upon exiting, she lifted her belt, as if to say that, in spite of the disqualification, of kicking a coach/rival, and of disrespecting Mei’s authority, she remains champion.
What caused Jolene’s meltdown? I don’t know. I can say that Vladoi has never beaten her, but it appeared that the ‘Storm’ was going to coach her way to a victory against Jolene. That might have lit the fuse.
Main Event: Cardinal vs. Forbes – Paparazzi Flash
The main event featured another returning fighter, Sheila Cardinal [0-0], taking on a new face in Katie ‘The Bombshell’ Forbes [13-8]. Sheila came into the ring with as much bounce to her step as ever, hearing the cheers of her fans. Forbes, meanwhile, received the paparazzi-like attention of the photographers gathered at ringside, whose camera flashes signaled the arrival of an exciting and capable newcomer. Welcome to the LFC, Ms. Forbes.
The first round was slow to build, the action seemingly waiting for a spark to get things rolling. Once the punches (some illegal) began to fly, competition started to take root. A somewhat even round, albeit Forbes may have tilted it in her favor with a winning persona and a refusal to take a step back. The round ended with the promise of more hostility to come.
Cardinal owned most of round two, finally getting ‘The Bombshell’ under her control; although that control was tenuous at best. Forbes, who had shown a propensity for throwing punches early in the fight, was seemingly conserving her energy for the last round, for a final assault.
Forbes, after her mid-fight break, came out reinvigorated and picked up the pace in round three. A well-timed suplex by Katie, followed by both a leg choke to the head and neck and an armbar that stretched Cardinal both physically and possibly mentally. A testament to Sheila’s experience is that she did not tap. Forbes earned a split decision win, making a case for one of the best debuts in the LFC.