Invicta FC 7 Results: Barb Honchak, Lauren Murphy Win Title FightsInvicta FC Flyweight Champion Barb “Little Warrior” Honchak successfully defended her title in the main event of Invicta Fighting Championships 7 tonight in Kansas City, Missouri. Honchak earned a five-round Unanimous Decision victory over challenger Leslie “The Peacemaker” Smith.

In tonight’s co-main event, Lauren Murphy captured the inaugural Invicta FC Bantamweight Championship with a fourth-round injury stoppage win over “The Queen of Mean” Miriam Nakamoto. Strawweight prospect Tecia “The Tiny Tornado” Torres excelled in victory over Felice “Lil’ Bulldog” Herrig.


Honchak (9-2-0) and Smith (6-4-1) engaged in an action-packed fight in tonight’s headliner that drew a standing ovation from the crowd in attendance. Honchak landed combinations in round one, but Smith repeatedly thwarted her attempts to take the fight to the ground. Honchak landed counterpunches and she finally got Smith down after ducking under a kick. She tried for a rear-naked choke and an arm-triangle before time expired.

In round two, Honchak once again controlled the action with quick strikes and a takedown into mount, but Smith rallied in round three and she threw a series of head kicks. Honchak took her down late in the round, but Smith countered with an omoplata attempt and she used it to sweep into top position.

Not to be deterred, Honchak came on strong in the final ten minutes and she once again took control of the striking exchanges by putting together combinations of punches and kicks. She scored takedowns in each of the final two rounds and struck from top position until shortly before the end of the entertaining fight.

All three judges scored the fight 49-46 for Honchak, who retained her title with her eighth straight win. She has not lost in more than three years and sports a perfect 4-0 record inside the Invicta FC cage.


The Invicta FC 7 co-main event was originally set to feature Invicta FC Strawweight Champion Carla “Cookie Monster” Esparza (9-2-0) defending her title against Claudia “Claudinha” Gadelha (11-0-0). However, for the third time, the bout was scrapped. This time, the fight’s cancellation came on fewer than 24 hours’ notice when Gadelha fell ill following the pre-fight weigh-ins and was taken to a nearby hospital. She was diagnosed with a bacterial infection and her fight was pulled from the card.

As a result of the bout’s cancellation, the inaugural bantamweight title tilt between Murphy (8-0-0) and Nakamoto (2-1-0, 1 NC) assumed second billing on the card. Nakamoto got off to an excellent start and she punished Murphy with chopping leg kicks and stiff jabs in the opening round. She followed with knees and slashing elbows to take an early lead on the scorecards. It was more of the same in round two, but Murphy began to find her range and she landed some solid knees of her own in close as the momentum began to shift.

In round three, Murphy worked for takedowns until she was finally able to get Nakamoto down against the cage. Nakamoto twisted her knee awkwardly on the way down and appeared to be in pain. Murphy landed some solid ground and pound and secured another takedown before the end of the round. Nakamoto was favouring her right knee prior to round four, but the fight continued on. However, Nakamoto’s knee gave out on her and the fight was stopped at the 23-second mark of round four.

Though her victory did not ended in the manner that she had hoped, Murphy nevertheless walked away as the new Invicta FC Bantamweight Champion after a gritty performance that saw her take some hard shots from Nakamoto and keep on fighting. Murphy appeared to be gaining momentum as the fight progressed. She remains perfect as a professional. Nakamoto, who sat out all of 2011 after undergoing ACL reconstructive surgery, was helped from the cage and taken to hospital.


In one of the most highly-anticipated fights on tonight’s card, Torres (4-0-0) put on another stellar performance in a dominant victory over Herrig (9-5-0). Right from the opening bell, Torres was a step ahead of Herrig in the striking exchanges and she repeatedly scored with flurries of punches and a variety of kicks. Herrig struggled to mount any offence as Torres kept her on the defensive with side kicks and front kicks.

Torres threw axe kicks in the final round and fought off Herrig’s takedown attempts. She eventually scored a takedown of her own and struck from the top until Herrig swept into top position. The fight ended with both fighters landing punches on the ground. All three judges saw the fight 30-27 for Torres, who earned a huge victory and accomplished her goal of cracking the strawweight top ten.

Following the fight, Esparza, who is best friends with Herrig, entered the cage and stated that she would like to face Torres in her next title defence. Torres was caught off-guard by the challenge and said that she was in no rush to fight for the title, but later noted that she would evaluate any fight offer that came her way.


Scottish striker Joanne “JoJo” Calderwood (8-0-0) kept her unblemished record intact with a competitive Unanimous Decision victory over previously unbeaten Finnish prospect Katja “Killer Bunny” Kankaanpää (8-1-1). Calderwood pawed out with jabs in the cautious opening round and she fought off Kankaanpää’s takedown attempts with knees in close. Kankaanpää eventually got her down, but Calderwood reversed and landed ground and pound before the end of the round.

Kankaanpää took Calderwood down on two occasions in the second round and she threatened with a rear-naked choke and an arm-triangle. Calderwood escaped, but the second stanza belonged to Kankaanpää and the fight was even heading into round three. Calderwood maintained a slight edge in the striking exchanges, but Kankaanpää clinched and took her back against the cage. Calderwood broke free and secured a late takedown that likely helped her to win the close round. The judges were united and all three saw the fight 29-28 for Calderwood, who may next challenge for Invicta FC title gold.


Earlier on the card, Julia “The Jewel” Budd (6-2-0) picked up her fourth straight win for Invicta FC by dominating fellow Canadian Charmaine “Not So Sweet” Tweet (4-4-0). Budd took Tweet down in all three rounds and she controlled the fight with ground and pound and occasional keylock and armbar attempts. Tweet remained active from her back, but Budd escaped each submission attempt and she never let Tweet mount any sustained offence. After three rounds, Budd took a Unanimous Decision win with a trio of 30-27 scores.

Former Invicta FC flyweight title challenger Vanessa Porto (16-6-0) got back on the winning track with a commanding Unanimous Decision victory over Zoila “The Warrior Princess” Frausto Gurgel (12-4-0). Gurgel landed knees and some nice right hands early on and she finished the round with a vicious head kick. However, Porto took control of the bout in the final ten minutes with one-twos and a takedown. She landed ground and pound from top position and avoided Gurgel’s late quest for a knockout. The judges scored the fight 30-27 and 29-28 twice for Porto, who has won six of her past eight bouts.

Bantamweight veteran Tonya “Triple Threat” Evinger (12-6-0) put on one of the most impressive performances of her career in a Unanimous Decision win over late replacement opponent Sarah “The Monster” D’Alelio (7-5-0). In round one, D’Alelio was in control of the action and she landed punches and elbows from the top after taking Evinger down. Evinger scored two takedowns of her own in round two and she rocked D’Alelio with a big right hook. With the fight up for grabs, Evinger seized control in round three with another takedown and a late rear-naked choke attempt. All three judges scored the fight 29-28 in her favour. She has won four straight bouts.

Opening up the card, Nina “The Strina” Ansaroff (6-3-0) knocked out Munah “The Perfect Storm” Holland (5-3-0) in a catchweight bout. Ansaroff countered Holland’s strikes in round one with quick kicks and punches and she took Holland down late in the round. Holland countered a takedown with an armbar attempt in round two and the fight returned to the feet. Ansaroff floored her with a four-punch combo and knocked her out with follow-up punches on the ground at the 3:54 mark of round two. Ansaroff has now finished five straight opponents.

Full play-by-play for all of the Invicta FC 7 bouts can be found here.



(Photo Credit: Esther Lin, /

  1. I’m 6-3*

  2. Such a disappointing ending to Murphy-Nakamoto, as it was turning into a tremendous struggle. Congratulations to Murphy, but still I feel so very sorry for Miriam — I did not know that she sat out all of 2011 with an ACL injury. I wonder now if she re-injured the same knee or is it the other knee.

    I truly hope Miriam can return from this injury. She is such a smooth and slick striker, overall so immensely talented. Wishing her the best in her recovery.

  3. Sad to see Miriam lose in such a fashion. I’ve become a huge fan.

    I think she would have won, if not for the knee injury. She was picking Murphy apart in rounds 1 and 2.

    I hope this is nothing too serious…

    I love Leslie Smith, but she simply didn’t seem herself there… she was not smiling, she was somewhat tense for this fight… and Barb clearly won rounds 1, 2, 4 and 5.

  4. Yes Rafael, I’m also a huge Leslie Smith fan and I honestly thought she was going to dominate Honchak. Hats off to Barb – She fought a tremendous fight and proved she’s the best in the world at 125. But I also noticed that Smith didn’t seem herself. I’m starting to wonder if the cut to 125 has diminished her energy. Yes, maybe she was simply nervous.