UFC Fight Night Prelims: Zach Makovsky Sends Tim Elliott to Third Consecutive Defeat

By Brian Knapp Feb 14, 2015
Former Bellator MMA champion Zach Makovsky took another step forward in the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s flyweight division.

Repeated takedowns, occasional guard passes and an opportunistic top game carried Makovsky to a unanimous decision over Tim Elliott at UFC Fight Night “Henderson vs. Thatch” on Saturday at the 1stBank Center in Broomfield, Colo. All three cageside judges scored it the same: 29-28 for Makovsky (19-5, 3-1 UFC).

The two flyweights were relentless in their pursuits across 15 minutes of entertaining, scramble-heavy exchanges. Elliott had his moments and utilized an active guard, but he spent far too much time in bottom position. Makovsky did his best work in rounds one and three, where he executed multiple takedowns, advanced to dominant positions -- he climbed to a mounted crucifix in the first and trapped Elliott’s arm from the back mount, ala B.J. Penn, in the third -- and threatened with chokes.

Resurgent Escudero Overwhelms ‘Monstro’

“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 8 winner Efrain Escudero won for the fifth time in seven outings, as he captured a one-sided unanimous decision from former Jungle Fight champion Rodrigo Goiana de Lima in a preliminary lightweight battle. Escudero (23-9, 4-5 UFC) swept the scorecards with identical 30-27 marks.

Escudero paired thunderous power punches on the feet -- his right hand was particularly effective -- with punishing ground-and-pound on the mat. He turned the tide of the fight permanently in the second round, where he made de Lima pay a heavy price for pulling guard and dropping to his back in desperation. Escudero blasted away with slingshot right hands and drained the Brazilian’s resolve from top position. In round three, the MMA Lab secured a takedown on the fading 23-year-old and attacked de Lima with short punches, hammerfists, elbows and forearm strikes.

Skelly Blitz Stops Alers

Team Takedown’s Chas Skelly put away former Cage Warriors Fighting Championship titleholder Jim Alers with a second-round punching burst in an undercard clash at 145 pounds. Alers (13-2, 1-1 UFC) succumbed to the blows 4:59 into round two.

Skelly (14-1, 3-1 UFC) fought through a takedown, a straight ankle lock from the Brazilian jiu-jitsu brown belt and increasing fatigue in the first round. The 29-year-old Texan ripped into Alers with looping right hands late in the second, backed him towards the cage and unloaded with a volley of unanswered punches. Alers squatted at the base of the fence and absorbed what was clearly an illegal knee strike to the head, though referee Tim Mills reportedly claimed to be in the process of halting the match when the blow in question was delivered.

Overweight Moontasri Submits Pfister

Black House representative James Moontasri submitted Cody Pfister with a second-round rear-naked choke in a preliminary lightweight scrap. A replacement for the injured Jake Lindsey, Pfister (11-4-1, 0-1 UFC) conceded defeat 1:49 into round two.

Airtight takedown defense and vicious knee strikes, at range and in close quarters, propelled Moontasri and slowly wore down the Octagon newcomer. Pfister had little left in the tank by the time the second round arrived. Moontasri (8-2, 1-1 UFC) countered a takedown attempt with one of his own, slid to the Coloradan’s back, set his hooks and executed the choke.

The 26-year-old Moontasri, who missed weight for the match, has recorded four wins in his past five appearances.

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