Caros Fodor (file photo) outpointed James Terry at Strikeforce "Challengers 16."
Caros Fodor stayed one step ahead of James Terry all night long.
Stubborn, aggressive and relentless, the 27-year-old Matt Hume protégé notched a unanimous decision against Terry in the Strikeforce “Challengers 16” headliner on Friday at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Scores were 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28, all for Fodor, who has won four consecutive fights.
Fodor (6-0, 1 NC; 4-0 SF) pushed a ridiculous pace throughout the competitive 15-minute affair, belting his foe with crisp, accurate punches, all while moving forward with measured abandon. Terry spent much of the fight on his heels, unable to discourage Fodor from walking him down, unable to land the one shot that might have turned the tide in his favor.
“I was definitely working on my striking a lot,” Fodor said. “Terry’s an extremely tough guy. We had a good strategy, and I was able to carry it out.”
Terry (10-3, 5-2 SF) often dictated the position of the clinches when the gap closed between the two lightweights, but Fodor created enough space on the cage to score with subtle but effective knees to the gut. Perhaps sensing he was behind on the scorecards, Terry finished with a flourish in the third round, as he freed himself from an attempted guillotine choke, moved into a dominant topside position and let the punches fall until the horn sounded.
Fodor has his sights set on bigger fish.
“This is four in a row,” he said. “I would like to start fighting the challengers.”
Ricehouse Hands Couture First Loss
In the co-main event, lightweight prospect Matt Ricehouse fed Ryan Couture a steady diet of body kicks and counter right hands on his way to a unanimous decision: 29-28 on all three scorecards.
Ricehouse (5-0, 3-0 SF) fought well in the clinch, stayed off his back and countered effectively throughout the 15-minute affair. He backed up Couture -- the son of UFC hall of famer Randy Couture -- with crisp counterpunching and well-placed kicks to the body. Ricehouse also scored with the only two takedowns of the fight.
“It wasn’t easy,” Ricehouse said. “I think I did pretty good. He’s no joke.”
Larkin Wears Down Villante, Stays Unbeaten
Undefeated light heavyweight prospect Lorenz Larkin weathered an early ground assault, turned up the heat with quick, accurate strikes and won a unanimous decision from former Ring of Combat champion Gian Villante in a featured matchup at 205 pounds.
All three cageside judges scored it 29-28 for Larkin, a 24-year-old Riverside, Calif., native who went the distance for the first time in eight appearances.
Villante (7-3, 0-2 SF), a two-sport standout at Hofstra University, controlled the first round. He landed a takedown, pinned Larkin to the mat and attacked with elbows and punches. However, he never again managed to ground Larkin. Villante’s pace slowed noticeably in round two, as Larkin brutalized his legs with punches, knees and kicks, many of them fired with his back stuck to the cage.
Larkin (11-0, 2-0 SF) stepped up his attack in the third, unleashing a pinpoint jabs, powerful straight rights and more thudding low kicks on the fading Villante. He iced the victory with an unlikely takedown
in the final 10 seconds.
High Wins Fifth Straight
UFC veteran Jason High made a successful promotional debut, as he delivered one takedown after another en route to a unanimous decision over King of the Cage champion Quinn Mulhern in a welterweight showcase. High swept the scorecards by matching 30-27 counts.
Mulhern (15-2, 0-1 SF) had no answer for his opponent’s takedown-heavy attack. Grounded over and over again, he stayed busy off his back but never had High in real danger. His six-and-a-half-inch height and four-inch reach advantage was not a factor. A finalist in the 2009 Dream welterweight grand prix, High (14-3, 1-0 SF) has rattled off five consecutive victories since being released by the UFC.
“I’d like to be able to do more,” High said. “I’m still working on changing some things.”
Budd Outpoints De Randamie
Julia Budd utilized clinches and takedowns in neutralizing the explosive standup skills of Germaine de Randamie, as she took a unanimous decision in a featured women’s middleweight tilt. All three judges scored it 29-28 for Budd, who trains under UFC veteran Lance Gibson.
Budd (2-1, 2-1 SF) was at her best in the first round. She secured a quick takedown, freed herself from a loose guillotine choke and moved into full mount. Budd, 27, remained there until she lost position on a failed armbar attempt near the cage.
Though she absorbed some punishment in brief standup exchanges, Budd remained true to her game plan, scoring with multiple takedowns in round two and three. De Randamie (2-2, 1-1 SF) had her chances in the third, when she stuffed a takedown, assumed a dominant position above her grounded foe and dropped punches. Ultimately, Budd returned to her feet and resumed her pursuits.
“I worked on my wrestling a lot,” Budd said. “I know she’s a good standup fighter. She hits so hard, so I wanted to wrestler her. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.”
More Strikeforce “Challengers 16” »
• Strikeforce Prelim Results & Play-by-Play