Carlos Diego Ferreira appears to have made the most of his time off.
Fighting for the first time since January 30, 2016, Ferreira dispatched former Cage Fury Fighting Championships titleholder Jared Gordon with first-round punches in the featured UFC Fight Night 126 prelim on Sunday at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas. Gordon (14-2, 2-1 UFC), who entered the cage on a five-fight winning streak, met his end 1:58 into Round 1.
After being warned for two errant inside leg kicks, Ferreira (13-2, 4-2 UFC) folded the New York native with a short left hook, climbed to full mount and ultimately advanced to the back. During the transition, he pinned Gordon’s left arm behind his back, putting him in a defenseless position. Unabated punches fell next, forcing referee Dan Miragliotta to intervene.
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Debuting Neal Taps Camozzi
Geoff Neal submitted former Resurrection Fighting Alliance champion Brian Camozzi with a modified rear-naked choke in the first round of their undercard confrontation at 170 pounds. Camozzi (7-5, 0-3 UFC) waved the white flag 2:48 into Round 1, as he lost for the third time in as many starts inside the Octagon.
Neal (9-2, 1-0 UFC) overwhelmed the Factory X representative with power and speed. He backed Camozzi to the fence with punches on more than one occasion, establishing his superiority from the start. Midway through the first round, they exchanged along the cage. Camozzi opened a gnarly cut above the Dallas-based welterweight’s eyebrow but could not keep him at bay. Neil moved to the back with Camozzi on a knee, locked down on the choke and squeezed for the finish.
The 27-year-old Neal has won three straight.
Choke Spurs ‘Little Fury’
Former Legacy Fighting Alliance champion Roberto Sanchez submitted Joby Sanchez with a rear-naked choke in the first round of their flyweight pairing. Joby Sanchez (11-3, 1-3 UFC) bowed out 1:50 into Round 1, his four-fight winning streak having run its course.
Roberto Sanchez (8-1, 1-1 UFC) pushed for a quick takedown, advanced to the backpack position during an ensuing scramble and secured his position with a body triangle. He then activated his hips on the standing Joby Sanchez, cinched the choke as they collapsed to the floor and sealed the deal soon after.
Pudilova Rallies to Decision
Lucie Pudilova overcame a slow start to win for the fifth time in six appearances, as she captured a unanimous verdict from “The Ultimate Fighter 18” semifinalist Sarah Moras in a three-round undercard scrap at 135 pounds. All three cageside judges scored it for Pudilova (8-2, 2-1 UFC): 29-28, 29-28 and 29-27.
Moras (5-3, 2-2 UFC) was on the right path for much of the first round, where she buzzed the Czech’s tower with a head kick, backed her up with punches and executed a takedown before applying her ground-and-pound. Pudilova later sat down the Canadian with a straight right, effectively turned the tide and extricated herself from attempted armbars and triangle chokes. For the next two rounds, she leaned on her superiority in the standup, peppering Moras with stiff jabs and surgical right hands. By the time it was over, Pudilova had made the judges’ jobs easy.
Morono Guillotine Submits Burkman
Onetime Legacy Fighting Championship titlist Alex Morono submitted Joshua Burkman with a guillotine choke in the first round of their preliminary welterweight affair. Burkman (28-17, 6-12 UFC) conceded defeat 2:12 into Round 1, as he suffered his fifth straight defeat and looked more and more like a fighter on his way out.
A brief stalemate gave way to powerful Morono leg kicks that had “The People’s Warrior” switching stances. Burkman hit the deck after eating a left hook, and in his haste to return to his feet, “The Ultimate Fighter 2” alum wandered into the fight-ending guillotine. He struggled briefly to free himself but soon found there was no hope of escape.
It was the ninth first-round finish for Morono (14-4, 3-1 UFC).
Unbeaten Piechota Blasts Williams
Former Cage Warriors Fighting Championship titleholder Oskar Piechota disposed of promotional newcomer Tim Williams with punches in the first round of their undercard clash at 185 pounds. Williams (15-4, 0-1 UFC) succumbed to blows 1:54 into Round 1, his run of five consecutive victories at an end.
Piechota (11-0-1, 2-0 UFC) cut down “The South Jersey Strangler” with an overhand right, assumed a kneeling position on his fallen counterpart and fired away with punches until it was over.
The 28-year-old Piechota has won eight fights in a row.