Leslie Smith vs. Raquel Pennington Added To Invicta FC 4 in Kansas City on Jan. 5
By FCF Staff
A bantamweight (135 pounds) matchup between Invicta FC 3 winner Leslie”The Peacemaker” Smith (4-2-1) of Pleasant Hill, Calif. and submission specialist Raquel “Rocky” Pennington (3-2-1) of Colorado Springs, Colo. has been added to Invicta Fighting Championships’ fourth women’s MMA fight card at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan. on Saturday, Jan. 5.
“Leslie and Raquel have both proven to be ferocious and determined competitors in the Invicta FC cage, so we are excited to be able to match them up against each other and create what should be a barnburner of a fight,” said Invicta FC President Shannon Knapp in a press release issued by the promotion today.
The 30-year-old Smith performed brilliantly in her last start at Invicta FC 3 at Memorial Hall on Oct. 6, scoring a furious TKO on rival Kaitlin Young with an onslaught of punches from mount position in the second round (2:19) of action. The bout marked a rematch to the pair’s epic, three-round slugfest, which ended in a draw at the inaugural Invicta FC event on April 28.
Smith, who turned professional in March 2009 after compiling a perfect 3-0 record as an amateur, has earned three of her four victories as a pro by way of TKO with her hands. She is product of the Cesar Gracie Academy.
The 24-year-old Pennington, who has competed five times since turning professional just nine months ago, is looking to return to the win column after struggling with undefeated Cat Zingano in an Invicta FC 3 main card matchup that saw Zingano submit Pennington with a rear-naked choke in the second round (3:32).
Prior to the defeat, Pennington had reeled off two straight wins – a unanimous decision over Sarah Moras at Invicta FC 2 at Memorial Hall on July 28 and first round (3:52) submission (guillotine choke) of Raquel Pa’aluhi in Honolulu, Hawaii on Sept. 8.
Pennington amassed a near unblemished 7-1 record under amateur status between Feb. 2009 and Aug. 2011. She earned five of her seven amateur victories by way of submission.
Tickets for Invicta FC 4: Gadelha vs. Esparza, priced from $25, are on sale at Memorial Hall box office (913-549-4853), online at Ticketmaster.com and InvictaFC.com and by phone at 800-745-3000.
In the main event and first-ever Invicta FC world strawweight (115 pounds) championship bout, Claudia Gadelha (9-0) of Mossoro, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil will face streaking star Carla Esparza (8-2) of Redondo Beach, Calif.
In the bantamweight co-main event, crowd-pleasing submission ace Shayna “The Queen of Spades” Baszler (15-7) of Sioux Falls, S.D. will battle fellow top-ranked star Alexis Davis (12-5) of Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada.
Updated Invicta FC 4 Fight Card:
Strawweight (115 pounds) Championship Main Event: Claudia Gadelha (9-0) vs. Carla Esparza (8-2)
Bantamweight (135 pounds) Co-Main Event: Shayna Baszler (15-7) vs. Alexis Davis (12-5)
Bantamweight: Leslie Smith (4-2-1) vs. Raquel Pennington (3-2-1)
Bantamweight: Amanda Nunes (7-2) vs. Sarah D’Alelio (6-3)
Featherweight (145 pounds): Hiroko Yamanaka (12-2) vs. Ediane Gomes (8-2)
Strawweight: Joanne Calderwood (4-0) vs. Bec Hyatt (4-1)
Featherweight: Veronica Rothenhausler (0-0) vs. Katalina Malungahu (2-1)
Atomweight (105 pounds): Stephanie Frausto (4-4) vs. Cassie Rodish (3-3)
Featherweight: Tamikka Brents (1-0) vs. Amanda Bell (0-0)
Atomweight: Jodie Esquibel (2-0) vs. Liz McCarthy (1-0)
Strawweight: Emily Kagan (2-0) vs. Rose Namajunas (0-0)
Strawweight: Paige Van Zant (2-0) vs. Tecia Torres (1-0)