From Invicta FightingChampionships:
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (April 23, 2012) –SHOWTIME Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) voice Mauro Ranallo, light heavyweightsuperstar "King Mo" Lawal and women’s star Julie "Fireball"Kedzie will call the action cageside at the first-ever Invicta FightingChampionships all-women’s professional MMA event, live on InvictaFC.com, fromMemorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan. on Saturday, April 28.
Ranallo, the lead commentator for Strikeforce on Showtime as well as forCanada’s The Score Fighting Series and a former commentator for Japan’s PrideFighting Championships, will serve as the play-by-play announcer during thelive stream of the event.
"I have always been a huge advocate of female MMA and I am very excited tobe a part of the inaugural Invicta show," said Ranallo. "The ladieshave a history of stealing the show from the guys, so it’s nice to see them geta show of their own."
Lawal is a former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion who burst onto thefight scene four years ago with four straight victories in Japan’s WorldVictory Road MMA series and has since amassed a career record of 8-1 (1 NC). Aformer NCAA Division I All-American wrestler for Oklahoma State University, the31-year-old has gained recognition for his technical knowledge of MMA and his meticulousattention to fighters’ styles.
"I’m excited to be a part of this event with some of the top women’sfighters in the world," said Lawal. "The growth of women’s MMA isgoing to soar even more now, thanks to what Invicta is doing."
Like Lawal, Kedzie brings a wealth of MMA fight experience with her to theshow. A student of famed trainer Greg Jackson, the 31-year-old has beencompeting as a professional since 2004 and holds a career record of 16-9.
"This Invicta show is a landmark moment in the history of women’s MMA andI’m very excited and honored that I was asked to be a part of it," saidKedzie.
The live stream on InvictaFC.com will begin at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST with theevent’s five-bout preliminary card and continue with the six-bout main card.
The first-ever Invicta Fighting Championships event will be headlined by along-awaited featherweight (145 pounds) rematch between superstar MarloesCoenen (19-5) of The Netherlands and Romy Ruyssen (5-1) of France. Coenen wasthe victor of their first meeting on Aug. 2, 2008 by way of submission(rear-naked choke) in the second round of action.
In the co-main event, two 29-year-old submission specialists - Jessica Penne(8-1) of Laguna Hills, Calif. and Lisa Ellis-Ward (14-7) of Lacey, Wash.- willsquare off with one another at strawweight (105 pounds).
Strikeforce bantamweight star and United States Marine Liz"Girl-Rilla" Carmouche (5-2) of San Diego, Calif. will square offwith unbeaten prospect Ashleigh Curry (1-0) of Kansas City, Mo.
Another Strikeforce bantamweight competitor, Sarah D’Alelio (4-2) of San Jose,Calif., will face undefeated former Royce Gracie student and BrazilianJiu-Jitsu brown belt Vanessa Mariscal (2-0) of El Segundo, Calif.
Leslie Smith (3-2) of Pleasant Hill, Calif. will meet Kaitlin Young (7-5) ofSt. Louis Park, Minn. at bantamweight and Sally Krumdiack (9-4) of Bellingham,Wash. will duke it out with Sarah Schneider (5-5) of Kansas City, Mo. atflyweight (115 pounds).
Making her MMA debut on the preliminary card will be 2008 Olympic wrestlingbronze medalist Randi Miller (0-0) of Denver, Colo. Miller will face unbeatenMollie Estes (1-0) of Lake Lotawana, Mo. at featherweight.
In preliminary card action, Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc (7-5) of Tulsa, Okla. willtake on Amy Davis (2-2) of Idaho Falls, Idaho at strawweight. Sarah Maloy (2-2)of Ada, Okla. will meet Michele Gutierrez (3-2) of Las Vegas, Nev. in a superflyweight (125 pounds) tilt. Unbeaten Ashley Cummins (2-0) of St. Louis willbattle Sofia Bagherdai (4-1) of Upland, Calif. at flyweight. Cassie Rodish(1-3) of Waukee, Iowa will face Meghan Wright (1-3) of Cincinnati, Ohio in astrawweight matchup.
All bouts have been approved by the Kansas State Athletic Commission.
About Invicta Fighting Championships:
Invicta Fighting Championships is a world championship Mixed MartialArts (MMA) fight series dedicated to providing female athletes with a majorplatform to hone their skills on a consistent basis. Founded in 2012 bylongtime MMA executive Shannon Knapp and sports aficionado Janet Martin,Invicta is committed to pioneering the future growth of women’s MMA bypromoting the best possible matchups between female competitors and identifyingand developing future superstars of the sport.