In one of the best fights of the night at UFC on Fox 8, MMA veteran Liz Carmouche (9-3) defeated UFC newcomer Jessica Andrade (9-3) via second-round TKO to climb back into the conversation for another shot at Ronda Rousey’s Women’s Bantamweight Championship.
Andrade and Carmouche engaged in a back-and-forth grappling match in the first round. The 21-year-old Brazilian nearly secured a guillotine choke, while Carmouche scored multiple takedowns.
In the second round, Carmouche went right back to work, taking down her opponent and advancing to mount. After she rained down some undefended ground-and-pound, referee Herb Dean called an end to the fight to give Carmouche the stoppage win.
She was coming off a devastating loss to Rousey in her previous bout—a submission defeat via the champion’s renowned first-round armbar—and regaining her footing in the division is a great sign for the future.
If she ever wants another shot at the title, beating Andrade was the first step on the road to redemption.
The rematch will have to wait, though, as Rousey and Miesha Tate are scheduled to square off at UFC 168 in December after the latest season of The Ultimate Fighter concludes.
Cat Zingano had originally earned the right to coach opposite Rousey on the reality show, but an injury forced the undefeated star to withdraw from the competition, opening the door for Tate.
While Zingano could be a viable next opponent for Carmouche after such a huge win, another likely competitor could be the loser of Sarah Kaufman vs. Sara McMann on August 28.
Despite beating Andrade on Saturday, there is no doubt that Carmouche needs another victory before earning a title shot in the UFC.
No matter who is next for the female star, a huge victory at UFC on Fox 8 proves that Carmouche is one of the top women in the division and a serious contender for the title.
Her rise to the top of the bantamweight power rankings has begun.