Invicta FC returns to Kansas City Friday, marking an opportunity for veteran company flyweight Roxanne Modafferi (19-12-0) to grab some interim flyweight gold from Brazilian champ Jennifer Maia (13-4-1).
With Barb Honchak currently on a leave of absence since 2014, Invicta has decided to strip the “Lil’ Warrior” of the undisputed belt. So Maia, who won the interim belt in an impressive come-from-behind win over Vanessa Porto at Invicta FC 16 will battle Modafferi for all the marbles.
Welcome back to The Crossfire.
Kenai Andrews checks in with his thoughts on the card.
ASHLEY GREENWAY (1-0-0) VS SUNNA RANNVEIG DAVIDSDOTTIR (0-0-0)
Andrews: Both fighters have a single fight of professional fight experience, but for Greenway, that fight was in Invicta and it was a win. I’m sure Davidsdottir does not want to disappoint Iceland or the IMMAF, but I have to go with Greenway.
Andrews Prediction: Ashley Greenway via unanimous decision
AMBER LELBROCK (1-1-0) VS AMY COLEMAN (2-0-0)
Andrews: Coleman is making her debut and has decent striking, but her ground game, while improved is still the weaker part of her game. I’m not sure Lelbrock can capitalize on that though. Coleman has the power to hurt the taller Lelbrock, but the much larger Amber has some power of her own. This is where Amy’s controlled aggressiveness and some technique can win her the fight. Properly used, I think she can get the TKO.
Andrews Prediction: Amy Coleman via TKO
JULIA JONES (4-0-0) VS STEPHANIE SKINNER (4-5-0)
Andrews: On paper, this looks like a bit of a mismatch, but Skinner has a two-fight win streak coming into this. She seems to either win or go out on her shield, but Jones has a single finish in her four wins. As long as Jones hasn’t underestimated Skinner and avoids the heavy shots, she should secure another decision.
Andrews Prediction: Julia Jones via unanimous decision
TIFFANY VAN SOEST (0-1-0) VS KAL HOLLIDAY (0-0-0)
Andrews: Van Soest is making the transition from a Muay Thai champion to MMA. No one knows if Tiffany has a ground game to combat “50Kal,” who by the way is a former KOTC champion, so Kal clearly gets the experience advantage. I’m going with the upset here.
Andrews Prediction: Kal Holliday via unanimous decision
MANJIT KOLEKAR (9-0-0) VS KALINE MEDEIROS (7-4-0)
Andrews: Medeiros will be the undefeated Indian star’s toughest opponent to date. My concern is that while Medeiros has fought a higher level of opponent – including an impressive win at Invicta FC 17 – she can be susceptible to the submission, a strength of Kolekar. Still, I have to go with the vast experience of Medeiros.
Andrews Prediction: Kaline Medeiros via TKO
IRENE ALDANA (6-2-0) VS FAITH VAN DUIN (6-2-0)
Andrews: Van Duin is returning after a win at Brace 41. She previously lost to Cyborg at featherweight at Invicta FC 13. This is a bantamweight bout and while Van Duin is a tough fight, the pin-point striking of Aldana should see her through.
Andrews Prediction: Irene Aldana via TKO
AYAKA HAMASAKI (13-1-0) VS JINH YU FREY (5-1-0)
Andrews: Frey is a decent striker who will need the keep this fight on the feet and the slick and cunning ground specialist Hamasaki. Can Frey do it? I’m not sure. Hamasaki has face experienced strikers before and her timing for critical takedowns is good. I’m going with Hamasaki to weather an early storm and eke out a late submission.
Andrews Prediction: Ayaka Hamasaki via submission
JENNIFER MAIA (13-4-1) VS ROXANNE MODAFFERI (19-12-0)
Andrews: Both fighters can take the fight on the feet or the ground, but Maia has the power advantage. She will wear out Roxanne if the fight goes to the ground, and she’ll take it there if she gets out struck. Roxanne can win the fight if it stays standing, but I think Maia’s takedowns and power give her the edge.
Andrews Prediction: Jennifer Maia via unanimous decision