Ben Rothwell and Ovince Saint Preux faced each other in a Light Heavyweight clash tonight (Wed., May 13, 2020) at UFC Jacksonville, which took place inside Vystar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida. After three fairly competitive rounds, Rothwell was awarded the split-decision victory.
Saint Preux opened the bout with his snap kick. Another scored to the mid-section moments later. One more! Rothwell backed his foe into the fence and caught a kick, but he wasn’t able to land. “OSP” kicked the inside leg, ate a hard right hand. Rothwell caught another kick, landed a combination. Saint Preux landed a solid left hand, circled back to the center. Saint Preux partially landed a high kick, but it allowed Rothwell to toss him to the mat and wrap up his neck. “OSP” controlled one hand to deny the choke, but Rothwell stayed heavy on top of him and landed small punches. Saint Preux finally escaped back to his feet with 20 seconds remaining in the round, but nothing really happened before the bell.
Glancing high kicked opened the second round for Saint Preux. He then scored with a left. Saint Preux stuck his foe with a jab, only for Rothwell to flurry with a combination and land clean at least once. Rothwell punched into the clinch, scoring with an uppercut. Rothwell kicked the inside thigh. Good snap kick landed for “OSP,” but Rothwell returned the favor. Body jab scored for Saint Preux. Overhand landed for “Big Ben,” followed by a shifting uppercut. Saint Preux landed two right hands in the clinch, but Rothwell was able to secure a double-collar tie and land knees. Rothwell scored two hard shots to the mid-section. Rothwell fired into the clinch, where he drove his forward into the jaw. “OSP” denied the takedown attempt but remained stuck on the fence. Just as Rothwell seems to really be taking over, Saint Preux cracked Rothwell with a counter hook and briefly sent his foe to the mat.
It didn’t take long for Saint Preux to find himself on the fence yet again in the third. Rothwell’s first flurry missed, but he was able to score a low kick. On his next attempt, he again wrapped up the double-collar tie and landed knees. Saint Preux scores with two hooks to the body and head. Big left hand from Rothwell snapped back his foe’s head. Rothwell ripped the mid-section. Rothwell went back to the clinch work, landing hard knees. Rothwell attacked a double leg, but Saint Preux was able to escape back to the center. “OSP” landed a big hook. Lunging right hand scored for Rothwell. Rothwell continued to pressure, landing a cross to the mid-section and uppercut. After some fence leaning, Saint Preux landed a left and ate a cross. The final exchange went a bit long after the bell, but it ended with Rothwell stumbling to the mat.
It wasn’t exactly pretty — did anyone think it would be? — but Rothwell’s combinations and forward pressure got the job done! Rothwell is now on a two-fight win streak, which is a solid rebound from his recent skid.
Result: Ben Rothwell defeats Ovince Saint Preux via split-decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
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