Bellator 144 ‘Halsey vs. Carvalho’ Results, Updates & Play-by-Play

Oct 23, 2015


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T.J. Hepburn vs. Sam Watford

Round 1

Watford tries to close the distance, walking Hepburn toward the fence, but the wrestler changes levels and puts Watford on the floor within 20 seconds of the opening bell. Hepburn works to improve position as he stacks his man up against the base of the cage, but Watford is rangy and keeps busy with open guard until he’s able to scramble back to his feet. Now it’s Hepburn’s turn to be pressed against the fence by Watford in the clinch. Halfway through the round, Watford hits a trip takedown; one minute later, he hasn’t accomplished much on the ground, just peppring the ribs of Hepburn with short left hands. Hepburn tries a butterfly sweep, creates enough space to scramble up but is pushed back against the fence by the larger man. Referee John McCarthy separates the fighters with 20 seconds to go, and Watford closes the round with a clinch knee.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Watford
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Watford
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Watford

Round 2

Watford bloodies the nose of Hepburn early in the second and then gets to work on another trip takedown. One minute in, Hepburn is once again seated at the base of the fence with Watford flattening him out from side control. Hepburn gets butterfly hooks and tries to elevate Watford, who stays heavy this time and keeps “The Carnivore” on the floor. Hepburn briefly rolls to his knees but has to put his back on the mat again when Watford threatens to take the back. More slow going late in the round as Watford continues to grind from top position, mounting sparse offense but completely handling Hepburn in the grappling department.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Watford
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Watford
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Watford

Round 3

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Watford cruised by Hepburn on the cards.
Hepburn charges straight at his opponent and shoots for a takedown, but he’s overpowered by Watford, who steps into full mount for the first time as they hit the ground. Hepburn quickly gets a knee inside, but Watford is basically mounting him, throwing short left hands to Hepburn’s unprotected face as Hepburn clings on from underneath. Three minutes left in the fight, and now Watford works from half guard on Hepburn’s right side, with his left side flush to the cage. Hepburn tries to push off the fence, can’t get away, but he’s aided by referee McCarthy’s stand-up order with 2:20 to go. This time it’s Hepburn who hits a fast takedown, though he’s immediately tangled up in the long, shifting guard of Watford. An armbar attempt from Watford forces Hepburn to stop what he’s doing, kneel and stack up until he’s able to yank the limb free. Hepburn needs a finish as he works on top with 30 seconds to go, and he tries to blast through Watford’s guard with heavy punches and elbows. Watford absorbs a few good shots, including one which cuts him on the forehead, but he survives to hear the final bell.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Watford (30-27 Watford)
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Hepburn (29-28 Watford)
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Hepburn (29-28 Watford)

The Official Result

Sam Watford def. T.J. Hepburn via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) R3 5:00

Pete Rogers vs. Marius Enache

Round 1

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Enache tested the limits of Rogers’ arm.
Enache switches between southpaw and orthodox stance as he slides backward in the opening minute, making Rogers contantly chase after him. Leg kicks are working for Enache until one catches Rogers on the cup, and referee Kevin MacDonald pauses the action. Rogers recovers after 30 seconds and action resumes with three minutes left in the round. Lots of circling and feinting from the 150-pounders until Enache uses a head-and-arm throw to put Rogers on the mat. Enache tries a neck crank from side control, then looks for a scarf hold armlock, but he doesn’t keep pressure and Rogers sweeps to top position with 90 seconds to go. Enache spends the remainder of the round threatening with a kimura from bottom.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Enache
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-10
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Enache

Round 2

There’s not much action through the opening half of round two, with the two unorthodox strikers continuing to circle, feint and weave. Enache gets a clinch on the fence and throws a few knees, but again there’s little happening in terms of offense. Rogers gets some separation, then walks straight forward at Enache and gets thrown back to the ground. Enache tries the scarf hold armlock again, and this time he’s got it. Rogers’ left arm bends at an unnatural angle, forcing him to tap.

The Official Result

Marius Enache def. Pete Rogers Jr. via Submission (Scarf Hold Armlock) R2 2:37

Matt Secor vs. Jeremie Holloway

Round 1

Secor hits a quick takedown near the center of the cage and passes to side control on Holloway’s left side. Secor is actively hunting for a choke, looking to move into north-south position, but Holloway is doing well to spin with him and stay out of danger. After two minutes of trying to set up a choke, Secor steps over to full mount and tries to tee up Holloway’s head for some ground-and-pound. Holloway wraps him up from underneath, using head-and-arm control to eliminate space and strikes. Secor finally gets some room with one minute left, but he only manages a few elbows before Holloway gets tight again. Secor tries to set up a triangle and rolls underneath, but he loses it instantly, allowing Holloway to finish the round on top.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Secor
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Secor
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Secor

Round 2

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Secor made Holloway cry uncle.
The welterweights stay standing through the first minute of the middle frame, both men pawing with jabs but neither landing cleanly with much of anything. Ninety seconds in, Secor fakes a right hand and drops levels to floor Holloway with an easy takedown in the center. Holloway clings to his opponent like a koala, but Secor soon has him flattened out again. Secor works from half guard with one minute left and suddenly drops back to try a kneebar, then a straight ankle lock. Secor is going hard for the submission with 30 seconds left in the round, but Holloway looks like he’ll be able to survive. Secor gets a heel hook locked on inside the 10-second clapper, wrenches it and gets the buzzer-beater tap.

The Official Result

Matt Secor def. Jeremie Holloway via Submission (Achilles Lock) R2 4:54

Kevin Haley vs. Mike Zichelle

Round 1

Haley catches a kick in the opening 20 seconds and runs Zichelle to the ground in the middle of the cage. Zichelle sweeps almost immediately to side control, leaning left to right across Haley’s body. Two minutes in, Zichelle passes to north-south position and fishes for a reverse triangle choke, but Haley escapes out the back door to his feet. Haley goes right after another takedown, and this time Zichelle is waiting with a guillotine on the way down. The headlock is loose, so Haley waits it out and slips his head free, then steps over to full mount. A few punches force Zichelle to give up his back, and Haley wastes no time applying a body triangle to secure the back mount. Zichelle escapes a rear-naked choke attempt, pins down Haley’s right arm and tries to roll over, but Haley uses the triangle to keep the position. Zichelle rolls to his knees and covers up as Haley drops punches from the back. Haley peels off to try an armbar in the last 30 seconds, but Zichelle defends.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Haley
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Haley
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Haley

Round 2

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Haley outpointed Zichelle.
Haley swings and misses with an overhand right but still manages to get into range, grab hold of Zichelle and floor him with another takedown. Again, Zichelle grabs a headlock on his way to the canvas, but again Haley is able to escape with little concern. Haley kneels in Zichelle’s half guard now, 90 seconds into the round. Zichelle suddenly drives forward and spins Haley against the fence, but he’s soon reversed again. The sloppy grappling continues as Zichelle reverses back to top position, and now it’s Haley’s turn to try a no-hope guillotine from the bottom. Zichelle frees his head and lands a pair of right hands which makes Haley grin, then another couple punches which do not. Ninety seconds to go, Zichelle continues to grind from the top, landing short hammerfists to the face of Haley, who’s just holding guard. Referee Dan Miragliotta finally stands them up with 20 seconds left, and Zichelle lands his best shot of the fight, a thumping right hand to Haley’s jaw.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Zichelle
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Zichelle
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Zichelle

Round 3

Zichelle slaps the face of Haley with a left high kick, but Haley catches the leg and uses it to run Zichelle to the ground near the fence. After a bit of grinding, a huge elbow strike busts Zichelle open, a massive bleeder on his left eyebrow. Referee Miragliotta calls the doctor, who clears Zichelle to continue. The fight is restarted with Haley on top, in Zichelle’s half guard, and just over 2:30 on the clock. Zichelle rolls away from the fence but can’t escape Haley, who once again locks onto back-mount when Zichelle rolls to his knees. Zichelle gets the angle and flips over to take top position with 70 seconds left. Haley wraps up from underneath, just trying to ride out the clock on the round he’s already won. Zichelle tries to push Haley’s head into the mat, tries to create some room to strike, but he can’t. Referee Miragliotta stands up again with 20 seconds left, but nothing much comes of it. Zichelle tries a spinning kick and is taken down one last time.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Haley (29-28 Haley)
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Haley (29-28 Haley)
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Haley (29-28 Haley)

The Official Result

Kevin Haley def. Mike Zichelle via Unanimous Decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28) R3 5:00

Matt Bessette vs. Kevin Roddy

Round 1

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Roddy tapped out quickly.
Bessette steps forward on the southpaw Roddy and gives him a few kicks to the lead leg. Roddy tries a kick of his own and falls to the ground, but he jumps back up before Bessette can capitalize. Roddy times a low kick and clips Bessette with a straight left counter, so Bessette slides out of range and resets. When Bessette pushes forward again, he catches Roddy with a left high kick behind a punching combination near the fence. Roddy hits the deck and Bessette is all over him, flattening Roddy from side control and grinding with short elbows. Roddy reclaims guard, kicks away Bessette and clips him with a perfectly placed upkick. Bessette wobbles momentarily, then regains his senses and hugs Roddy against the fence as they stand midway through the round. Roddy pulls guard and tries to catch Bessette with another upkick. Bessette counters by dropping to the ground, grabbing a heel hook and forcing a submission.

The Official Result

Matt Bessette def. Kevin Roddy via Submission (Heel Hook) R1 3:47

Billy Giovanella vs. Brandon Polcare

Round 1

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Giovanella caught Polcare in round one.
Polcare takes down the lanky Giovanella in seconds and works to stack him up at the base of the fence. Giovanella uses his long limbs to threaten with a triangle, forcing Polcare to bury his face in an attempt to avoid the submission. Giovanella switches the triangle to the opposite side, wrapping up Polcare’s head and right arm, but Polcare is staying alive, now two minutes into the bout. Polcare takes a seat and tries to extract his head as Giovanella continues to tighten the choke. Finally, Polcare has nowhere to go and is forced to submit to the triangle.

The Official Result

Billy Giovanella def. Brandon Polcare via Submission (Triangle Choke) R1 2:19

Kin Moy vs. Walter Smith-Cotito

Round 1

Cotito is pressuring early, keeping forward motion on Moy and catching him with some hard right hands down the center. Moy tries to work some leg kicks, but Cotito times these and finds success with more right hands. Cotito catches a kick and runs Moy against the cage. Moy sprawls well for a moment, but Cotito finds the angle on his double-leg and whips “Kin Kong” to the ground. Moy stands right back up and is underhooked against the fence. Cotito drops to try another takedown, can’t get it and stands up to avoid Moy’s knees. Cotito gets Moy back on the ground but can’t do much once there, instead picking the ankle to try and keep him on the mat.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Smith-Cotito
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Smith-Cotito
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Smith-Cotito

Round 2

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Moy forced a tap with an RNC.
Moy is finding some success on the feet early in the second, landing leg kicks and sticking Cotito with a few good right hands. Cotito tries a double-leg in the middle of the cage, gets stuffed and reversed, and now it’s Moy in top position with three minutes left in the round. Cotito tries to sit up and drive forward, so Moy wraps up a guillotine and squeezes until Cotito goes willingly to his back again. Moy has shifted the momentum in this fight drastically, as he is out-hustling Cotito on the mat here in the second stanza. Cotito finally kicks him away and scrambles up with 80 seconds on the clock, only to be taken back down again 20 seconds later. Moy puts a forearm across Cotito’s face, making things uncomfortable on the ground, but Cotito puts him back in full guard for the final 30 seconds.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Moy
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Moy
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Moy

Round 3

Cotito is back on his jabs and quick right hands to start round three, and he shuts down an early takedown attempt from Moy away from the fence. Moy is on his back foot again, now being jabbed into the fence and underhooked by Cotito. The bantamweights head-fight in the clinch, Cotito getting underneath and maintaining outside position by avoiding a Moy foot sweep. Moy breaks away after 90 seconds, and now referee Bryan Miner wants Cotito to fix a loose velcro closure on his trunks. The fight resumes and it’s Moy popping Cotito with a few fast right hands. The 135ers appear to clash heads on a few exchanges, then Cotito snaps off a nice left straight. Moy changes levels and drives Cotito to the canvas with 2:20 to go, but Cotito immediately hooks a leg and looks to sweep. Moy smashes out and gets Cotito to turn over, then scrambles to jump on his back. Moy is going all-out for a rear-naked choke with 90 seconds left, and he’s got his left arm underneath Cotito’s chin. Cotito is resisting but clearly fading due to the choke, blowing spit out of his mouth as he gasps for air. Finally, Cotito is forced to tap out, giving Moy the late submission victory.

The Official Result

Kin Moy def. Walter Smith-Cotito via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) R3 3:53

Michael Page vs. Charlie Ontiveros

Round 1

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“MVP” destroyed his foe with elbows.
Ontiveros passes on a touch of gloves, instead preferring to cut angles around the outside while Page sets up in the center. Ontiveros steps out to the middle and feints a few side kicks before going back to the outside. Page stalks the American around the cage, switching stances, dipping in and out of range in his wide, low-handed stance. Ontiveros steps out again, but this time “MVP” catches him coming into the pocket with a stinging right hand. Ontiveros eats it to clinch up and drag Page toward the fence, but once there, it’s the Englishman tripping Ontiveros to the ground. Page postures up in Ontiveros’ half guard but can’t get off any ground-and-pound. Page passes to mount, then back-mount when Ontiveros rolls to his knees and gives up his back. Ontiveros stands and sits out, so Page wrestles him back down and takes side control on the Texan’s left. A series of four heavy elbows to the face stun Ontiveros and send referee Dan Miragliotta into action, giving Page his eighth first-round finish in nine fights.

The Official Result

Michael Page def. Charlie Ontiveros via TKO (Elbows) R1 3:20

Goiti Yamauchi vs. Isao Kobayashi

Round 1

Kobayashi starts out circling to his right around the outside, then catches a step-in kick from Yamauchi and drags the Brazilian to the ground. Yamauchi absorbs some hard punches to the face as he rolls underneath, grabbing for a leg. Kobayashi defends but allows Yamauchi to stand, and now the featherweights tie up on the fence. They spin off to the center, where Yamauchi pulls guard and attacks the legs again. A quick heel hook attempt allows Yamauchi to scramble up. He catches Kobayashi turning his back to dash away and jumps on, then rides the former Pancrase champ to the ground. Yamauchi is set up on Kobayashi’s back, both hooks in, still with half the round to go. Kobayashi is doing well to fend off a rear-naked choke, and Yamauchi is trying to make him pay with punches over the shoulder. Yamauchi is relentless in his pursuit of the RNC but Kobayashi is showing great defense. Yamauchi switches to a reverse arm-triangle choke which seems to have Kobayashi concerned. Yamauchi switches back to the RNC, still can’t get under Kobayashi’s chin, so he spikes the Japanese fighter’s abdomen with heel strikes. With 20 seconds left, Kobayashi finally scrapes Yamauchi off his back and leaps to his feet. Yamauchi stays on the ground, upkicking, and that’s where the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Yamauchi
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Yamauchi
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Yamauchi

Round 2

Kobayashi stakes out the center but is quickly pushed backward by the long, straight right hands of Yamauchi. The Brazilian tries a Thai clinch but can’t break the posture of Kobayashi, who wraps up Yamauchi around the body and sweeps him to the mat in the middle of the cage. Yamauchi holds tight guard with a body triangle as he works to post and stand, possibly looking for a kimura as he leans to Kobayashi’s left arm. Yamauchi uses the kimura to sweep into Kobayashi’s half guard with just over two minutes remaining. Kobayashi keeps his gloves high to block punches on the side of the head, leaving himself open for a Yamauchi elbow on the jaw. Another elbow slices Kobayashi on the right side of his brow; another leaves him with a lump under the left eye. Yamauchi works his way to Kobayashi’s back in the final 20 seconds and finishes the round hunting for the rear-naked choke again.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-9 Yamauchi
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Yamauchi
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-9 Yamauchi

Round 3

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Kobayashi tapped for the first time.
Kobayashi is swinging hard to start round three but not producing much volume as he tries to walk Yamauchi toward the fence. Yamauchi circles out to the middle and floors Kobayashi with a sneaky left hand under the armpit in an exchange. A dazed Kobayashi catches Yamauchi in deep half guard but can’t prevent him from slipping around to take the back. Yamauchi is latched on with more than three minutes remaining, working to wrap his right arm around Kobayashi’s throat. Kobayashi is somehow staying alive, keeping his chin tucked and peeling at Yamauchi’s hands even as it looks like he might be going to sleep. Finally, Yamauchi gives up on the choke and tries to start from scratch with another. Kobayashi is just surviving in this round, forced to be completely defensive due to Yamauchi’s nonstop attack. Yamauchi goes after the choke once more, and this time he’s got enough of his right arm around Kobayashi’s neck to get a tap. Goiti Yamauchi scores another submission, bringing his career total to 15.

The Official Result

Goiti Yamauchi def. Isao Kobayashi via Submission (Rear-Naked Choke) R3 3:50

Brennan Ward vs. Dennis Olson

Round 1

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Olson was no match for Ward.
Olson shoots immediately for a single-leg and drives Ward against the cage, where Ward resists the takedown long enough to slap on a guillotine. Olson takes a seat at the base of the fence and has to go flat on his back to escape the choke, surrendering top position. Ward works from Olson’s half guard, roughing him up with a few grinding elbows before being kicked away. Ward stands and repositions himself to land in side control on Olson’s left. Olson shifts underneath, causing Ward to back off and request a stand-up from referee John McCarthy. Olson eats several punches before a straight right hand to the forehead makes him stagger backwards. Ward runs him down and unloads with ground-and-pound, then follows as Olson scrambles over to the fence. Ward keeps his foe on the ground, triangling Olson’s legs near the fence and advancing to full mount. Olson reclaims deep half guard and looks to have sliced Ward open with an elbow from underneath. Ward keeps the pressure on, socking Olson with short hammerfists and elbows, placing a forearm across his throat. Ward backs off to allow the fading Olson to stand, and within seconds, a right hand to the temple puts Olson back on the mat. Ward dribbles Olson’s head off the canvas with a few punches on the ground, sending referee McCarthy in for the stoppage.

The Official Result

Brennan Ward def. Dennis Olson via KO (Punches) R1 4:37

Bellator Middleweight Title Fight:
Brandon Halsey vs. Rafael Carvalho

Round 1

New Jersey’s Dan Miragliotta is the referee for tonight’s 185-pound title fight. Carvalho is on his back foot from the first moment, and Halsey shows why as he shoots and completes a takedown within 30 seconds. “The Bull” muscles Carvalho to the ground, the Brazilian’s left side up against the fence with Halsey pressuring from half guard on the right. Halsey steps over to full mount and snaps on a lightning-quick arm-triangle choke. Carvalho tries to clasp his hands above his head to loosen Halsey’s grip, but the choke is tight and the former champ is bearing down with all he’s got. Carvalho squirms and bucks underneath, finally forcing Halsey to release after nearly a minute of struggling. Carvalho sits up and drives on Halsey’s legs, but the Californian sprawls all over him and stacks up Carvalho at the bottom of the fence again. Carvalho jumps back to his feet with just over two minutes remaining, only to be run back down 10 seconds later by a Halsey double-leg in the center. Carvalho posts and stands, but Halsey never lets go and rides him right back to the mat. Full mount for Halsey in the middle of the cage with 90 seconds remaining. Carvalho’s arms are high, blocking Halsey’s attempted punches, so Halsey loops an arm around the Brazilian’s head and tees him up for a couple right hands as the round ends.

Sherdog Scores

Jordan Breen scores the round 10-8 Halsey
Tristen Critchfield scores the round 10-9 Halsey
Chris Nelson scores the round 10-8 Halsey

Round 2

(+ Enlarge) | Photo: D. Mandel/Sherdog.com

Carvalho timed his move perfectly.
Carvalho catches the incoming Halsey with a knee to the ribs, but the “Bull” charges through it to pin the Brazilian to the fence. Halsey abandons a takedown attempt to dig an underhook and keep Carvalho pinned, then drops levels to run him off the fence with a double-leg. Carvalho keeps his footing but can’t escape Halsey’s bodylock. Ninety seconds into the round, Carvalho shoves Halsey away and follows him to the center of the cage, where Carvalho finds his opponent’s body wide open for a liver kick. Halsey instantly doubles over and turns around, and after Carvalho hits him with a few punches on the ground, referee Miragliotta jumps in to halt the bout. Out of nowhere, Rafael Carvalho has pulled off the upset to become the new Bellator middleweight champion.

The Official Result

Rafael Carvalho def. Brandon Halsey via KO (Body Kick) R2 1:42

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