Holly Holm got a win tonight at UFC 184 in her debut, but Raquel Pennington didn’t make it easy and took her to a split decision.
Holm working on the outside to start. Pennington with a leg kick. Holm tries a side kick to the head. She comes forward with a punch and Pennington clinches. Holm reverses and pushes here away.
Holm with a punch that Pennington ducks under and the former boxer clinches momentarily before breaking away. Holm with a front kick to the leg.
This time Holm targets the body. She unleashes an aggressive flurry of punches. Now a knee.
Pennington looking for a leg kick and Holm responds with a side kick to the leg again. Pennington looks to clinch, but Holm lands a knee.
Pennington with a leg kick. Holm with punches then throws up a head kick, but Pennington partially catches it, walks her to the cage and clinches up.
Holm able to get away. The two exchange punches. Holm with a front kick upstairs but doesn’t land. A chain of left and rights from Holm now.
Holm upping her punch volume now. Lefts, right, then a head kick attempt now. Front kick to the body from Holm to end the round as she keeps her work-rate high without yet landing any particularly damaging blows.
Both ladies come up short with punches and Pennington lands a kick to the upper body. Holm just misses with a head kick.
In close Pennington lands a punch in close. Holm taking the center of the cage for the most part though and feeling out with punches and then tries another big kick.
Holm lands a nice knee. Pennington with a couple of punches in close and then it’s Holm on offense again with a kick to finish.
Pennington coming forward and Holm keeps her at bay with a side kick. Another head kick attempt that doesn’t pay off.
A series of jabs from Holm now. Hard left to the body. She makes Pennington miss with a leg kick. Pennington comes forward again with punches and one lands.
Pennington beats Holm to a front kick. Nice exchange of punches in close then Holm is moving smoothly around the Octagon picking her moments to strike. Pennington landing occasionally, but Holm is getting the better of it for the most part.
Holm looks to be warming to her Octagon debut in this round and she ends the five minute spell with rapid fire side kicks.
Straight left for Holm. Leg kick for Pennington and a right hand. Another leg kick for Pennington and Holm lands a harder one of her own.
Pennington with a side kick to the body. Uppercut connects for Holm. Now a hook that gave Pennington pause for thought.
Front kick attempt and then a hook kick from Holm that’s just short. Pennington comes forward and lands a nice right hand. Spinning kick from Holm doesn’t find the target.
Left lands for Holm, Pennington lands a right. Head kick for Holm that’s blocked. Holm lands a strike as she presses forward with a flurry.
Pennington on offense now trying to land a kick upstairs. Pennington lands a punch and Holm stumbles to the mat. Not sure how big of a connection that had, think it was more of a push but either way Holm is right back up and into the clinch landing a knee.
Holm stays in the clinch momentarily and when they break Pennington lands a punch. Holm with a flurry but Pennington connects. A few punches land for Pennington, she’s finding her range here.
High kick for Holm that’s blocked. Both women exchange punches as the round comes to an end and Holm is bleeding from her nose.
So, Pennington certainly made a fight of it, particularly in the third round and that’s reflected in a split decision ruling but it’s Holm who emerges with the win in her Octagon debut (29-28, 28-29, 30-27).