Bellator 201: “Macfarlane vs. Lara” takes place TONIGHT (Fri., June 29, 2018) at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, Calif., featuring a women’s Flyweight title defense for undefeated Brazilian jiu-jitsu expert Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (7-0) against the fun-loving and exciting Colombian fighter Alejandra Lara (7-1). That’s not the only Flyweight fight on tap tonight. You can also look forward to former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) star Valerie Letourneau (9-6) taking on a tough divisional rival in Kristina Williams (2-0) as both look to inch their way toward challenging the winner of the main event!
Bellator 201’s Paramount Network-televised main card will start at 9 p.m. ET. MMAmania.com will deliver results and play-by-play for the entirety of the Bellator MMA card, including “Prelims” undercard action at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Many readers check in before, during and after the fights to share their thoughts on all of the action. Feel free to leave a comment (or 201) about the bouts and chat with all the other Maniacs during the show -- it's always a lot of fun!
BELLATOR 201 QUICK RESULTS:
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane vs. Alejandra Lara — Macfarlane sub (armbar) 3:55 R3.
Valerie Letourneau vs. Kristina Williams — Letourneau UD 29-28 X3.
Saad Awad vs. Ryan Couture — Awad TKO 4:29 R1.
Juan Archuleta vs. Robbie Peralta — Archuleta KO 0:14 R3.
Jordan Young vs. Jamal Pogues — Young sub (triangle) 3:15 R3.
Victor Rosas vs. Ricky Furar — Furar UD 30-27 X3.
Keri Anne Melendez vs. Tiani Valle — Melendez sub (RNC) 2:46 R1.
Tyrell Fortune vs. Giovanni Sarran — Fortune TKO 4:35 R2.
Joey Davis vs. Craig Plaskett — Davis UD 30-26 X3.
Jacob Rosales vs. Joshua Jones — Rosales UD 30-27 X3.
Jay-Jay Wilson vs. David Conte — Wilson RNC 0:59 R1.
Ed Ruth vs. Andy Murad — Ruth TKO 4:59 R2.
BELLATOR 201 PLAY-BY-PLAY:
Ilima-Lei Macfarlane vs. Alejandra Lara
The champion Macfarlane is 7-0. The challenger Lara is 7-1. Lara dances her way to the cage again wearing the black top, black trunks and blue gloves.She’s even lip syncing to her entrance song and continues to dance as she leaves the prep point and enters the cage. If you just tuned in for the main event you got a bonus show. The champ is much more stoic but she has a full Hawaiian entourage surrounding her to dance. Mike Goldberg informs us she just got promoted to a brown belt at 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu. Macfarlane is in black head to toe and has on the red gloves. Lara hails from Medellin, Colombia. Macfarlane hails from Honolulu and fights out of San Diego. Our ref is Mike Beltran.
Round 1: Gloves are touched at the center before the first clinch attempt. They separate and reset. Macfarlane is definitely looking for a takedown. It’s Lara who ends up on top though about 46 seconds in as Macfarlane goes to rubber guard and begins to look for a triangle. She’s got almost got it cinched up at 1:27 but Lara slips out. Macfarlane goes for an armbar/triangle combo and Lara is on defense once again. Beltran is keeping a close eye on Lara to make sure she’s okay. Macfarlane lets it go at 2:54 and works her way to her knees. Lara looks to take her back in response. Lara has side control with 75 seconds left. North-South for Lara. Lara lands some good left hands before she flips over and both women stand with ten seconds left. Two knees from clinch before the bell for Lara. 10-9 Macfarlane.
Round 2: Macfarlane is trying to use her hands to set up takedowns this round. Lara is fencing her off and turns her around against the fence, but earns a stern warning from Beltran for grabbing it. Macfarlane finally throws Lara to the ground at 2:14. Lara keeps Macfarlane’s right leg trapped but that doesn’t stop Macfarlane from landing hard elbows to the head. 90 seconds remain. Macfarlane uses an armbar attempt to improve her position on the ground while Lara is defending and starts to look for a rear naked choke with 40 seconds left. Macfarlane softens her up with left hands from behind to finish the round. 10-9 Macfarlane.
Round 3: Macfarlane is opening up with the strikes and Lara is being caught flat footed. She’s got Lara backing up and now she’s got Lara’s back, dragging her to the ground a minute into the round. The crowd erupts as she gets one hook in and starts to flatten Lara out. She lets Lara roll underneath her and winds up on top in full mount. A hard right hand and elbow crack Lara’s head. Lara has to survive in this position for 2:40. Macfarlane switches to the armbar and Lara tries to push the arm away with her foot. Beltran is keeping an eye on it. Lara is not tapping even as John McCarthy screams on commentary how tight the armbar is. 90 seconds remain. She finally gives up at 3:55! Macfarlane successfully defends her title.
Final result: Ilima-Lei Macfarlane retains via submission (armbar) at 3:55 of round three.
Valerie Letourneau vs. Kristina Williams
Black body suit, blue gloves, camouflage trunks with yellow trim for the 2-0 Williams. Black top, dark trunk and red gloves for the 9-6 Letourneau. 35 to 28, 5’7” to 5’8” and 69.5” to 66” reach from Letourneau to Williams. Williams fights out of Edmond, Oklahoma. Letourneau fights out of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Our referee is Rob Madrigal.
Round 1: Williams circles outside initially then comes forward to exchange kicks. She throws a combo and Letourneau backs up. Williams snaps a hard kick into Letourneau’s left thigh. Letourneau stuns Williams for a split second with her right hand. Williams throws another kick. Letourneau is knocked off balance and butt scoots her way to the cage to get back up. Body kick from Letourneau. Big right by Letourneau drops Williams and she puts an elbow on her face as Williams closes the guard. Letourneau postures up for another elbow and more right hands. Two minutes left in R1. Williams is warned about shots to the back of the head. Williams tries to trap an arm but fails. Madrigal calls for action at 3:59. He stands them up at 4:35. 10-9 Letourneau.
Round 2: The action has slowed down a little in the first minute of the round. Williams is still trying to fight at distance with her kicks. Letourneau lands the one two with the hard right hand. Exciting flurry for both women at 2:20. Williams wades into the fray swinging wildly and resets at 2:52. Williams tries to jackhammer several rights with elbows and Letourneau responds in kind. Good right hand for Williams. Two right hands from Letourneau. Leg kick for Letourneau. Face kick for Williams. Another right elbow by Williams. Left hook to the chin for Letourneau. Williams ends R2 with a head kick. Super close round that appeared to edge to Williams 10-9.
Round 3: Both women seemed ready to dump their entire gas tank in the first 20 seconds of this round. The crowd erupts for their fistick fury. Letourneau doubles Williams to the ground at 0:58. Williams closes guard and tries to tie her up but that’s only playing to Letourneau’s favor by giving her riding time on top. The sudden reluctance to stand them up by the ref also plays to Letourneau’s advantage. 90 seconds remain. They’re finally stood up with 1:10 left. Hard leg kick from Letourneau. Williams chases but doesn’t land the big shot. Letourneau single legs her to the ground. Williams tries to make a guillotine of it with short time left, then a triangle, but can’t cinch either one up. 10-9 Letourneau but this could wind up being a split decision.
Final result: All three judges score it 29-28 for “Trouble” Valerie Letourneau.
Saad Awad vs. Ryan Couture
Couture has the blue gloves, black trunks, and 11-5 record coming into the night. Saad Awad is 22-9 in the black trunks and red gloves, taking the 17th Bellator fight of his career tonight. Both men are 35. Awad stands one inch taller at 5’11”. Couture has a two inch reach advantage at 75”. He fights out of Las Vegas, Nevada. Awad fights out of San Bernardino, California. The ref is Jason Herzog.
Round 1: Both men are feeling out the range for the first half minute. Awad lands a solid right head kick but Couture keeps coming forward. Awad cracks with a right but then seems to shake out his hand. Couture clinches up and Awad turns him around against the cage. Couture tries to turn out and Awad turns him right back and throws knees to the leg. Couture considers a second turn but breaks off at 1:55. Awad backs Couture up with a combo. Couture tries a jump knee. Awad lands a flush 1-2. Couture clinches again at 3:12. They spin and spin on the cage and break at 3:40. Awad puts a right on Couture’s chin. Couture gets wobbled at 4:10 and Awad starts pouring it on against the fence. Couture can barely stay standing. He drops to his knees and Herzog waves it off at 4:29.
Final result: Saad Awad finishes via TKO at 4:29 of the first round.
Juan Archuleta vs. Robbie Peralta
19-1 vs. 19-8, 30 to 32, 5’9” to 5’7”, 69” reach each from Archuleta to Peralta, red gloves to blue gloves. Archuleta has on the white trunks and fights out of Venice Beach, California. Peralta has on the black trunks and fights out of Escondido, California. Our referee is Mark Smith.
Round 1: Peralta takes the center and Archuleta circles on the outside. Archuleta charges in and goes for a single leg then presses Peralta into the cage. Knees to the body from Archuleta as he tries to break Peralta down. He hits a flying knee as he backs away then a takedown seconds later as he comes back forward. 1:35 gone. Archuleta works more knees as Peralta gets back up. Another jumping knee and a right hook for Archuleta. Peralta backs away at 2:32 and Archuleta resets. Archuleta with a leg kick. Archuleta lands the leg kick and eats a hook for it. Peralta comes in swinging but Archuleta drops levels and avoids it. They’re pressed into the cage again and Smith calls for more work with a minute left in the round. They break apart at 4:25. Archuleta charges forward with a flurry. Spinning flurry from Archuleta and Peralta is against the cage to end R1. 10-9 Archuleta.
Round 2: Archuleta quickly has another takedown in the first 30 seconds. Peralta tries to stand up and Archuleta nearly gets an arm around his neck. He’s up at 1:04. Smith calls for work again. Archuleta lands an uppercut and goes for a leg trip. Smith calls to “improve your position” at 1:52. Archuleta tries for a single leg as Peralta widens his stance.Peralta lands a few right hands to the head as he struggles to keep his balance. Archuleta tries to trip the left leg to no avail. Peralta tries to shoot himself and Archuleta sprawls hard. Peralta can’t complete the takedown and Archuleta presses him into the fence to throw knees to the body. A couple of right hands hit Peralta’s head as some fans in the crowd cheer him on. Smith calls for work again at 3:50. Left hook from Archuleta as Peralta breaks away. Peralta comes forward swinging. Archuleta outboxes him and goes for the jumping knee once more before they end up against the cage. Peralta throws the right hand on the break. Archuleta gets a late takedown to ice a 10-9 round.
Round 3: Archuleta wasted little time finishing this fight after the bell to open the final five. Peralta came forward, Archuleta faked him out by dipping low then caught him flush with an overhand right STRAIGHT to the jaw. Smith stopped the fight immediately as Archuleta went to his team to celebrate.
Final result: Juan “The Spaniard” Archuleta wins by knockout at 0:14 of R3.
Jordan Young vs. Jamal Pogues
8-0 to 4-1, 23 to 22, 6’4” to 6’2” and 76.5” to 77” reach from Young to Pogues. Young has the red gloves, Pogues the blue. Pogues fights out of Victorville, CA. Young fights out of Coconut Creek, Florida. Our referee is Rob Madrigal.
Round 1: Glove tap at the center to start. Young is standing tall and fishing with his left hand. Pogues is trying to push his way forward for a takedown. Young spins free, Pogues shoots in again (eating a knee as he does) and Young widens his stance. Pogues is trying to uproot the left leg for a single but isn’t having much luck. Young slips out at 1:43. Pogues lands a solid left jab. Young lands consecutive left hooks. Pogues tries to close in again but Young pushes the head away and steps out at 2:25. Pogues tries again to shoot off a flurry but Young seems unfazed. 3:15 gone. Young breaks at 3:29. Young gets a knee to the sternum in clinch as Pogues shoots again then breaks at 4:03. Young initiates his own clinch with double underhooks looking for a takedown but breaks it and ends R1 standing. 10-9 Young.
Round 2: Pogues gets a takedown 12 seconds into R2. Young elbows him in the head a couple of times as he sits up against the fence. He starts to get up but Pogues sucks the leg up at 59 seconds to put him back on his butt. Pogues isn’t doing much damage with the takedown though and hasn’t gotten Young away from the fence. What we have here is a stalemate. Young looks at the ref for a stand-up but he’s not getting it. Young tries and fails to get up at 2:52. Pogues is landing a few body shots here and there and he wins this round but it’s a very boring 10-9 - maybe the least exciting tonight.
Round 3: Third and final round starts with Young and Pogues clinching up immediately. Pogues drops levels and doubles Young to the canvas but this time Young gets back up. Pogues tries to get a single leg on the left side but Young breaks free at 1:26. Pogues shoots and completes another takedown at 1:51. Pogues goes for the back and gets one hook in, then the second, and Pogues has 2:40 to work. Young escapes almost immediately though and the fight is standing again. Young comes forward looking to scrap. Pogues is told that he has to engage as he keeps backpedaling. Young pushes him into the fence but is unable to get the takedown. Pogues gets on top but Young slickly wraps a leg around his head in the triangle, snatching victory from the jaws of what could have been a decision defeat. Young looks both happy and completely spent after the finish.
Final result: Jordan Young wins via submission (triangle) at 3:15 of the third round.
Victor Rosas vs. Ricky Furar
Round 1: Unaired online.
Final result: Ricky Furar wins via unanimous decision 30-27 X3.
Keri Anne Melendez vs. Tiani Valle
1-0 each for Melendez and Valle. Melendez 34, Valle 23. 5’6” to 5’5”. 67.5” reach to 66” reach. Melendez has the red gloves and Valle the blue. Valle has a black top and trunks and fights out of Maui, Hawaii. Melendez has a black body suit and black trunks and fights out of San Francisco. Our referee in charge is Michael Bell.
Round 1: No glove tap as they come to the center looking to bang. Melendez turns Valle around with a hard left and then lands another. Her right hand is held high and cocked ready to let it go. She just misses with a right elbow as Valle tried an ill advised clinch. Body shot and kick from Melendez. Multiple rights and a left from Melendez. Cracking right by Melendez at 1:46. Another at 2:01. Valle is showing she’s tough but she doesn’t want to eat too many of those. Big left to the chin by Melendez and a counter right hook followed by a left uppercut. A right hand drops Valle at 2:28. Melendez jumps on the back and sinks in a very right rear naked choke. Valle is DONE. It is ALL over.
Final result: Keri Anne Melendez wins via submission (rear naked choke) at 2:46 of round one.
Tyrell Fortune vs. Giovanni Sarran
4-0 vs. 5-2, 27 vs. 29, 6’2” vs. 5’7”, 76.5” vs. 71.5” from Fortune to Sarran. Fortune fights out of Tempe, Arizona. Sarran fights out of Palmdale, California. Our ref is Frank Trigg.
Round 1: Fortune is in the red gloves and Sarran is in the blue. They circle for the first 40 seconds, clinch up, and Fortune drives him into the fence with a thai plum to throw nasty knees. Sarran is trying to work shots to the body as he’s pressed into the cage but Trigg is keeping a close eye on it to make sure he isn’t getting too hurt. Fortune is throwing uppercuts as well. He drops for a takedown and has it at 1:59. Fortune postures up to rain down heavy left hands. Fortune spins to the side, takes the back, and throws the uppercut under the chin from behind. Sarran tries and fails to get back up and is eating multiple right hands from behind. Trigg warns Sarran to defend himself or risk a stoppage. He briefly gets out of trouble but Fortune takes the back and continues to pour on lefts and rights. Trigg slaps Sarran’s hand away when he tries to grab the cage. Hammerfists rain down in the center. Sarran keeps moving just enough for it to not be stopped but it’s a 10-8 blowout for Fortune.
Round 2: Fortune admitted he spent a lot of gas trying to finish Sarran between rounds. They tap gloves to open the second. Fortune gets him down 23 seconds into R2. Fortune goes for a back mount but loses the hook. Trigg barks “work to finish” a couple of times as Fortune rides Sarran’s back. Sarran tries to get up, momentarily has a weak guillotine, and Fortune pops right out. Sarran stands up at 3:06. Fortune scores another takedown at 3:29. Trigg tells him to get busier this time or he’ll be stood up. Fortune gets one hook in and throws unchecked lefts to Sarran’s head from behind. Sarran is warned to move. He doesn’t. Trigg stops the fight.
Final result: Tyrell Fortune wins by TKO at 4:35 of the second round.
Joey Davis vs. Craig Plaskett
Davis is 3-0, 24, 5’11” with a 74” reach in red gloves. Plaskett is 2-2, 28, 5’11” with a 76” reach in blue gloves. Plaskett fights out of North Hollywood, California. Davis fights out of Compton, California. Our referee is Rob Madrigal.
Round 1: Davis gets a takedown 9 seconds into the fight. Plaskett gets to his knees near the fence and is trying to get back up and does a minute and change in but Davis immediately takes him down again. Plaskett stands up a second time and breaks free at 1:21. Davis circles and fires the left jab and overhand right. He tried a spinning heel kick but Plaskett got too close for it to land correctly and tagged Davis on the chin to boot. Davis tries the spin kick a second time. Plaskett responds with a leg kick. Plaskett throws a spinning high kick. Davis fires off the hands. Leg kick Plaskett. Another takedown by Davis at 3:41. He spins looking to take the back. Plaskett rolls him back to guard. They both get to their knees and Davis grabs the back to throw right hands to his head. 10-9 Davis.
Round 2: Both men dance to the center for R2. Plaskett keeps up the leg kicks and push kicks, coming forward with the jab toward Davis. Davis clinches up and doubles him to the ground with ease. Davis goes for the back and gets one hook in and briefly had the arm under the chin until Plaskett spins free. Plaskett and Davis fight for wrist control and leverage against the fence. Plaskett stands up at 2:36 and is thrown back down 4 seconds later. He stands up and is doubled down again at 3:00. Davis once again tries to go for the back for the rear naked choke but can’t sink it in. Plaskett covers up trying to avoid left hands. Davis is warned not to hit the back of the head. Plaskett tries to get a knee bar late but the bell ends R2. 10-9 Davis.
Round 3: Both men are breathing hard as they come out for R3. Madrigal calls time because Plaskett didn’t put his mouthpiece in. When the fight is restarted Davis hits the takedown at 0:15. Right hands and elbows come pouring down. Plaskett gets him back to full guard but Davis sits up and drops a right elbow on his face and you can see the blood on it as he moves to half. Plaskett paints the canvas as Davis continues to punish him. He’s warned to defend himself as Davis drills him from half guard, pushing Plaskett back down any time he tries to sit up. The mat is now a Jackson Pollock painting. So are Davis’ legs and chest. Plaskett goes for a heel hook with short time left but can’t get it. 10-9 Davis.
Final result: The judges all score it 30-26 for Joey Davis by unanimous decision.
Jacob Rosales vs. Joshua Jones
Round 1: Unaired online.
Final result: Jacob Rosales wins via unanimous decision 30-27 X3.
Jay-Jay Wilson vs. David Conte
Round 1: Unaired online.
Final result: Jay-Jay Wilson wins via rear naked choke at 0:59 of round one.
Ed Ruth vs. Andy Murad
5-0, 27, 5’11” and 77” reach for Ruth in the red gloves, 15-2, 35, 5’9” and 69” for Murad in the blue gloves. Murad fights out of San Diego, California. Ruth fights out of Fresno, California. Our referee in charge is Jason Herzog.
Round 1: Ruth lands a left hook seconds into R1 and pushes forward, forcing Murad toward the fence. He tries a superman punch and eats another right and left. His face is bruising up quickly. Murad tries to stuff a takedown and eats a series of punches against the fence. Murad turns Ruth around and goes for a single leg. Ruth slips behind him and leg trips him down face first. Ruth is firing hard right hands from behind and Murad is covering up. Murad gets up at 2:17 and is dragged right back down. Left hands to the body and head by Davis. Jumping knee to the ribs by Davis. Another knee lands flush. Ruth tries to get under the armpit to the chin as Murad keeps trying to cover up. Murad gets up and goes right back down at 3:55. Ruth gets one hook in from behind, considers a RNC and lets it go. Lefts and rights from behind. 10-9 Ruth.
Round 2: Ruth opens R2 with another flush shot to the face of Murad. Murad tries to land some hard kicks to the lead right leg of Ruth. Ruth keeps coming forward with the right hand and put a kick on his head to boot. Murad’s left eye is bleeding heavily now. Left head kick by Ruth. More leg kicks from Murad. Ruth has opened cuts under both eyes now. Ruth mixes in the kicks and jabs to the body to keep Murad guessing. The difference between Murad and a punching bag is that Murad occasionally lands a kick. Ruth wobbles him in the final 15 seconds of the round and Herzog steps in with a second left as Murad was no longer intelligently defending on his feet. It’s all over.
Final result: Ed Ruth wins via technical knockout at 4:59 of the second round.