Bellator 197 ‘Chandler vs. Girtz’ Play-by-Play, Results & Round-by-Round Scoring

By Sherdog.com Staff Apr 13, 2018


Sherdog's live Bellator 197 coverage kicks off at 7 p.m. ET.

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Eric Ellington vs. Jordan Howard

Round 1

Howard gets the better of a sparse opening minute, landing a few outside leg kicks and a grazing right hand as the bantamweights circle in the center. The going remains slow through the middle of the round; Ellington finally throws a three-punch combo, but Howard slides backward to dodge the punches. Howard finds a right hand over the top, lands another leg kick. When Howard throws another low kick, Ellington catches it and converts it for a takedown with 55 seconds on the clock. Ellington lands a few short punches to the body as he works from Howard's open guard in the final minute.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-10

Round 2

Howard connects with an early uppercut, but seconds later, it's Ellington driving forward to secure an opening-minute takedown. The bantamweights find themselves back in the same position as the end of round one, with Howard's head jammed up against the fence and Ellington working from open guard. Referee Mike England calls for work as Howard locks down Ellington's right arm, causing a bit of a stalemate. Ellington yanks the arm free and feeds Howard a few short right hands while snuffing out a nascent triangle attempt. Referee England calls the fighters back to their feet with 2:15 remaining in the round. Howard, now working southpaw, gives Ellington a hard inside leg kick. Back to orthodox goes Howard, landing an overhand right, but once again Ellington is able to plow Howard to the mat with a powerful takedown. Ellington holds Howard on the floor for the final minute, again working the body with short punches.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Ellington

Round 3

Howard, now leaking blood from the right side of his hairline, switches between stances in the opening minute, again landing some sporadic punches and leg kicks. Howard connects with a couple harder punches, then a knee. Once again, as soon as Ellington starts to absorb strikes, he changes levels and plows Howard to the floor. This time, Howard is waiting and throws up a quick triangle, then switching to an armbar attempt. Ellington powers his way out of both submission attempts and settles down in Howard's guard with half the round remaining. Thirty seconds later, with little happening on the ground, referee England orders the fighters back to their feet. Howard jabs his way forward, then socks Ellington with an uppercut. Ellington snatches a high double and takes down Howard yet again, this time right up against the fence. Howard quickly posts and stands, separating from Ellington with 45 seconds left to fight. Less than 10 seconds later, Ellington scores his final takedown, which keeps Howard on his back to the final horn.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Howard (29-29 Draw)

The Official Result

Eric Ellington def. Jordan Howard via Split Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29) R3 5:00

Dominic Mazzotta vs. Josh Sampo

Round 1

Sampo tries to get aggressive early, but when he comes forward swinging punches, Mazzotta pops him with a counter right and takes him straight to the ground. Mazzotta goes to side control on Sampo's left, where the "Honey Badger" works to secure a crucifix. Mazzotta leans across to try a kimura on Sampo's right arm, but Sampo gets the arm back in a hurry. Sampo tries to sit up and drive forward with a takedown of his own; Mazzotta has other ideas, trapping Sampo's right arm between his legs, then dropping right hands on his kneeling opponent. Sampo keeps driving for the takedown, but Mazzotta uses a reverse crucifix to plant "The Gremlin" on his back again. Halfway through a busy opening round, it's Mazzotta on top, working from Sampo's closed guard. Sampo kicks him away and jumps back to his feet -- but Mazzotta needs only a few seconds and a single-leg to take Sampo down again. Sampo tries to hold Mazzotta in butterfly guard, but he absorbs some elbows from Mazzotta anyway. Sampo drops back to try a heel hook; Mazzotta pulls the leg free and goes for a kneebar of his own at the end of the round.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Mazzotta

Round 2

Mazzotta comes forward as the bantamweights do some ineffective striking in the first minute of round two. The "Honey Badger" snatches up a single-leg and drives Sampo to the canvas yet again. Sampo tries to snare Mazzotta in a guillotine as he's taken down, but the choke falls apart as soon as they hit the ground. Mazzotta postures up to thump Sampo with some nice elbow strikes, then goes to the body with a few short punches. Sampo is taking some hard elbows to the face, and now he opens up his guard as he shifts and looks for an escape from the bottom. Mazzotta tries to transition from a crucifix to an armbar, but Sampo hooks the back leg of the Henri Hooft pupil and keeps the arm safe. Mazzotta sells out on the sub attempt, allowing Sampo to take top position. Sampo lands a few punches before Mazzotta grabs a leg and sweeps him underneath.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Mazzotta

Round 3

Mazzotta puts a spinning back kick in Sampo's breadbasket, then angles away as Sampo tries to blitz him with punches. Sampo comes forward for a brief clinch on the fence, then disengages with a spinning elbow which Mazzotta easily dodges. Mazzotta goes underneath a right hand for a slow-motion single-leg that puts Sampo on his back once again. It's Mazzotta in control on top with three minutes left to fight; Sampo is shifting underneath, angling for a submission, surely knowing that he needs a finish to win this fight. Sampo instead gets a knee inside, pushes Mazzotta away and jumps to his feet. Now it's Sampo's turn to drive forward and score a takedown. Mazzotta grabs a headlock and holds on to it as Sampo moves to side control, but Sampo is unable to work a shoulder choke before Mazzotta releases. Mazzotta gets hold of a leg and drops back to try a heel hook; Sampo counters with a kneebar attempt. Mazzotta releases the leg and drives forward, but Sampo catches his arm in an omoplata. Mazzotta frees the arm but cedes mount to Sampo, who tries a last-ditch guillotine just before the bell.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Sampo (29-28 Mazzotta)

The Official Result

Dominic Mazzotta def. Josh Sampo via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) R3 5:00

Derek Anderson vs. Zak Bucia

Round 1

Anderson comes straight forward at the bell, backing up Bucia to the fence and touching the veteran with a right hand over the top. Anderson quickly follows that with a takedown, but as soon as they hit the floor, it's Bucia doing work from his back. Within seconds, Bucia has what appears to be a deep armbar; "Crash" tries to go belly-down and stretch out the arm, but he's stacked up by Anderson at the base of the fence. Anderson finally pulls his arm free with 2:55 on the clock, after feeding Bucia a few short punches. Bucia throws up a triangle, but Anderson stuffs it instantly. The next triangle attempt from Bucia comes closer, but again Anderson is able to break free. Bucia is relentless from his back, attacking the right arm of Anderson with another armbar in the final minute. Anderson has his elbow clear, though, and once the arm is free, he slugs Bucia with a few elbows at the bell.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Bucia

Round 2

Anderson backs up Bucia with more combinations in the opening minute of the round, cracking the local favorite with a few hard right hands. "The Barbaric" blocks a head kick, lands another right hand. Bucia answers with a stiff left hand, then Anderson rocks him with a double jab. Suddenly, Anderson connects with a pair of uppercuts that put Bucia on roller skates. Anderson takes Bucia to the floor and follows up with some ground-and-pound. Bucia wraps up from the bottom to slow the pace, and the fighters come back to their feet with two minutes remaining. Anderson again finds success on the feet, with uppercuts that once again put Bucia on his back. Anderson follows Bucia to the floor and soon finds himself defending another Bucia armbar attempt. Anderson allows Bucia to stand with just under one minute to go. Bucia tries to come forward and eats a jump knee, then a jab. Anderson finds the mark with another uppercut but takes his foot off the gas in the final 30 seconds.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Anderson

Round 3

Anderson chops at Bucia's lead leg with some heavy kicks, then zaps the Kansas native with a left hook. Bucia is stuck on his back foot, circling the outside here in round three, with Anderson controlling the action from the center of the cage. Two minutes in, Bucia plants a nice left hand on Anderson's jaw, but the younger fighter seems unfazed as he marches forward again. A left uppercut from Anderson opens a cut underneath Bucia's right eye as they fight with under three minutes remaining. Bucia answers by blooding Anderson's nose with a left hand of his own. Anderson backs up Bucia with two hard right hands, then an inside leg kick. Bucia switches between stances but nonetheless eats an overhand right as Anderson comes forward. With 30 seconds on the clock, Bucia puts Anderson in trouble with a left high kick and a pair of punches. Anderson snuffs out the late rally with a takedown, then defends Bucia's last-second armbar attempt.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Anderson (29-28 Anderson)

The Official Result

Derek Anderson def. Zak Bucia via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) R3 5:00

Rebecca Ruth vs. Juliana Velasquez

Round 1

The southpaw Velasquez connects with a few hard left hands in the opening minute. Ruth tries to get busy with some inside leg kicks against the much larger fighter. Velasquez initiates a clinch on the fence, using an underhook to pin Ruth to the wall. Ruth puts her left arm across Velasquez's face to try and separate, but the Brazilian looks to be the stronger fighter here. Referee Marc Wasem calls for work in the clinch, which briefly turns into a whizzer as Ruth tries to escape. Velasquez tries a throw, but it's stuffed by Ruth. The flyweights come back to the center of the cage; Ruth is already breathing heavy, her mouthpiece hanging halfway out as she circles. Ruth tries a trip takedown, can't get it, and Velasquez makes her pay with a nice left hand.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Velasquez

Round 2

Ruth tries to get off to a big start, swinging her arms at Velasquez, but the American can't come up with much. Velasquez looks to be the much sharper boxer as she snaps back Ruth's head with a combination, then angles away. Ruth lands a body kick but takes a straight left for her troubles. Velasquez leans forward to deliver the left hand again, then counters a Ruth low kick with another left. Velasquez is strictly looking to counter now, waiting for Ruth to come forward and then slugging her with a straight left. Suddenly, Ruth knocks down Velasquez with a right hand, but the Brazilian jumps straight back to her feet. Ruth tries to follow up and walks into a heavy left from Velasquez, and now it's Ruth hitting the canvas. Ruth looks to be hurt as Velasquez tries to pound her out, but "Ruthless" is able to wrap up from the bottom and withstand the attack. Velasquez allows Ruth to stand with 30 seconds remaining in the round. Ruth charges forward swinging wild punches and get plunked with yet another straight left before the bell.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Velasquez

Round 3

Ruth tries to stomp her way into the pocket and gets dinged by another counter left. Velasquez angles off and Ruth comes chasing after her. Velasquez is waiting with a front kick that lands right in Ruth's stomach, and Ruth drops to her knee in agony. Referee Wasem immediately steps between the fighters, thinking it was a low blow; moments later, the ref figures out what happened and waves off the bout.

The Official Result

Juliana Velasquez def. Rebecca Ruth via KO (Kick to the Body) R3 0:19

Kevin "Baby Slice" Ferguson Jr. vs. Devon Brock

Round 1

Ferguson comes forward swinging punches, then changes levels for an early takedown, but Brock is quickly back on his feet. Brock lands an outside leg kick, then gets his head turned as Ferguson lands a left hand in the middle of a combination. "Baby Slice" counters a low kick with a right hand that touches Brock on the temple, and the Californian's legs go out from under him. Ferguson follows his wounded opponent to the ground, lands a few punches and then jumps on Brock's back. Within seconds, Brock is tapping out to a deep rear-naked choke.

The Official Result

Kevin Ferguson Jr. def. Devon Brock via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) R1 0:34

Joaquin Buckley vs. Logan Storley

Round 1

Storley circles for about 20 seconds before changing levels for an early takedown attempt. Buckley backs up against the fence and sticks out his right arm to post as Storley struggles to complete the takedown. One minute in, Storley puts Buckley flat on the mat, staying heavy and tight on top as he works from the half guard of "New Mansa." Buckley tries to explode out from the bottom, but he only succeeds in moving Storley to half guard on the opposite side. Buckley finally climbs back to his feet around the midway mark, but Storley is all over him and completes another double-leg in short order. Storley moves to side control on Buckley's left with 70 seconds on the clock, then quickly puts himself back in half guard to land a few short punches. Storley feeds Buckley three or four hard elbows as he moves into mount in the closing seconds.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Storley

Round 2

Storley goes diving for another takedown in the first 15 seconds of the round. Again, Buckley is able to post up and resist for a while, but eventually Storley is able to pull out his hips and complete the takedown. Fighting at the foot of the fence, Storley stays heavy on top as he bears down on Buckley from half guard. Buckley is trying to shift underneath, working toward some kind of escape, but he's barely able to move underneath the wrestler's stifling top control. Storley is staying just busy enough with punches to prevent a stand-up command from referee Jason Herzog. Storley passes to full mount with just over 60 seconds on the clock. Storley postures up to drop punches, but Buckley is doing well enough moving and covering up that he'll survive to see round three.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Storley

Round 3

Storley grabs a single-leg in the center of the cage, pushes Buckley to the fence and trips him to the ground. Same as the previous rounds, Buckley puts a hand out to post and balance -- but Storley's tenacity on his legs eventually yields a takedown. Buckley works back to his feet, even hitting Storley with an elbow along the way. Storley nevers lets go of Buckley, though, and another takedown follows in short order. The welterweights move toward the center of the cage, where Storley spins to take the back of the kneeling Buckley with 2:40 left in the bout. Buckley rolls and puts his back on the mat to escape the dangerous position, but this leaves Storley in side control. Storley stays busy with some half-hearted knees to Buckley's body. Buckley scoots backward and climbs back to his feet, only to be taken down again seconds later. Storley goes back to side control and lays across Buckley to ride out the final minute.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Storley (30-27 Storley)

The Official Result

Logan Storley def. Joaquin Buckley via Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27) R3 5:00

A.J. McKee vs. Justin Lawrence

Round 1

Both fighters land body kicks in the opening exchange, then Lawrence puts a heavy kick in the breadbasket of his southpaw opponent. McKee, who's circling the outside, misses as he swings a few long left hands in Lawrence's direction. McKee comes out to the center of the cage, where he lands a left that pushes Lawrence to the outside. McKee tries to follow up but is slowed by a takedown attempt. Lawrence gives up on the shot and circles out to the middle, where McKee touches him again with the left, then a clean body kick. McKee is waiting to counter, watching closely with his left hand cocked as Lawrence inches forward. McKee pops Lawrence with a nice one-two, misses an axe kick and then plunges a straight right onto the jaw of the local favorite. Lawrence tries an axe kick of his own but comes up short. McKee snaps off a hard jab in the face of Lawrence, then tries to go upstairs but has a switch kick blocked. Inside the final minute of a busy opening round, McKee touches Lawrence with another long left hand. McKee gets backed up to the fence but creates some space with a side kick to Lawrence's chest. "The Mercenary" gets the final word in round one with a pair of kicks to the body of Lawrence.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 McKee

Round 2

Lawrence quickly backs McKee up to the fence, but McKee plants his hand and creates some space with some capoeira-style kicks. Lawrence counters a kick with a nice body shot; McKee circles to his right and eventually responds with a hard jab. McKee dives from way out for a single-leg and is easily blocked by Lawrence, who circles away to continue striking. Another sharp one-two from McKee leaves Lawrence with a cut underneath his left eye. Lawrence gets tripped up and rolls his ankle, then circles away, stepping gingerly on his left leg. McKee aims a kick at the leg, and Lawrence jumps backward to protect it. Lawrence counters a low kick with a right hand over the top as he tries to regain some ground here in the final minute of the frame. McKee goes up top and slaps Lawrence's face with a right high kick, but it's Lawrence getting the final shot of the round with a left hand to the chin.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 McKee

Round 3

McKee drives Lawrence against the fence with a high double-leg in the opening seconds of the final round. Lawrence widens his base to defend, while McKee keeps digging, trying to clasp his hands and complete the shot. After a minute on the fence without much action, Lawrence shrugs at referee Mike England, who calls for action. The ref doesn't have to separate the fighters, as the featherweights break apart on their own a few second later. They go back to their familiar positions, with Lawrence working from the center and following McKee around the outside. McKee eats a right hand but answers with a clean body kick, then goes back to work on Lawrence's legs. Ninety seconds remain in a bout which has been largely controlled by McKee, though it has often been Lawrence coming forward. McKee changes levels to push Lawrence against the fence, then comes back up to hold him in place with an underhook. Lawrence slips out the side with 35 seconds left to fight and comes after McKee with fists and knees flying. "The American Kid" lands a few more strikes in the closing moments, but McKee avoids any major damage.

Sherdog Scores

Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 McKee (30-27 McKee)

The Official Result

A.J. McKee def. Justin Lawrence via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) R3 5:00

Michael Chandler vs. Brandon Girtz

Round 1

Referee Jason Herzog is the third man in the cage for tonight's three-round lightweight main event. The southpaw Girtz crouches low, testing the distance with flickering jabs as the orthodox Chandler inches forward. Both 155ers are swinging big single punches early, but it's a low kick from Girtz that inadvertantly lands on Chandler's cup. "Iron Mike" takes a minute to recover, then it's back to action with just over four minutes on the clock. Girtz catches a kick from Chandler and swings murderous punches as the former champion drops to the ground to evade the strikes. Chandler rolls back to his feet, and in the next exchange, it's Girtz receiving an accidental foul. Chandler's outstretched left hand have the fingers pointed outward and poke Girtz in the eyes and on the bridge of the nose. Referee Herzog calls for the cageside physician, who quickly clears Girtz to continue. Girtz circles to his left with his back near the fence, Chandler working from the center. Girtz touches Chandler with a check right hook. With 1:40 on the clock, Chandler scores his first takedown of the bout and immediately moves to side control. Chandler is on Girtz's right side, jamming his left up against the fence. The former champion catches Girtz trying to sit up, snares him in an arm-triangle choke, then hops off to the opposite side and sinks his hips to the ground. Referee Herzog recognizes that Girtz has gone unconscious and quickly waves an end to the bout.

The Official Result

Michael Chandler def. Brandon Girtz via Submission (Arm-Triangle Choke) R1 4:00

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