After a thrilling back-and-forth first round, Pablo Garza utilized his superior ground skills to rough up and dominate Mark Hominick and claim a unanimous decision victory at UFC 154 tonight.
Hominick pressed forward from the opening bell and tried to get his offense going, but Garza was happy to meet him half-way and his rangey punches and kicks gave the Canadian plenty to think about.
Garza seemed comfortable at this stage and was firing off kicks at will, but mid-way through the round Hominick started to find a home for his punches, with one in particular sending him stumbling back towards the cage.
That forced Garza to change his gameplan and he looked for the takedown, but Hominick ended up on top. However he wasn’t safe their as Garza threw up his long limbs and worked for an armbar. It looked tight, but Hominick stayed calm and escaped before working back to his feet.
They go back to the striking game and Garza’s trying to get back into his groove, but Hominick has other ideas and rips a nasty strike to the body that folds his opponent to the mat.
Garza gets back to his feet and in trying to land more strikes in search of a finish Hominick slacks on his defense and pays for it when Garza lands a punch that leaves him cut above and below the eye.
Hominick’s struggling to see due to all the blood and Garza presses forward with strikes, but the bell sounds to bring an end to an action-packed round.
Garza starts the second round with a spectacular spinning kick, but it misses. Hominick tries to work to the body again, but doesn’t find the same success this time around.
Garza looks for a takedown and after a brief scramble secures top control. That’s where he spends the rest of the round, working some nasty ground and pound, making particularly good use of elbows strikes and it opens up Hominick’s existing cuts on the left side and opens a new one below his right eye too.
To his credit Hominick was trying to do something off his back, but Garza shuts him down and it’s a big round for him.
Onto the final round and after a brief striking exchange Garza again ducks down and secures a takedown. He’s not working quite as hard this round, just keeping the dominant position and doing just enough to keep the referee at bay.
With a minute to go Hominick suddenly was able to get in a position to kick Garza off of him and get back to his feet, but it was short-lived with Garza immediately charging forward and getting the fight back to the mat for the remainder of the fight.
Onto the scorecards we go then, and it’s no surprise to see that Garza’s ground dominance has earned him the victory here (29-27, 30-26, 29-28).