Tonya Evinger would claim vengeance over Yana Kunitskaya with a second round submission victory at Invicta FC 22 on Saturday night and would settle once and for all who the true Invicta bantamweight champion is.

After a controversial loss in their first fight at Invicta FC 20, Evinger successfully had the decision overturned due to referee interference on appeal, and newly crowned champion Kunitskaya was forced to hand back the belt.

Invicta FC 22 took place on Saturday, March 26 at the Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, Missouri and provided a fantastic night of action with great fights up and down the card. The main event rematch between Kunitskaya and Evinger for the bantamweight title was highly anticipated and lived up to all expectations leaving nobody disappointed.

Evinger stretches win streak to seven with RNC victory

Evinger (19-6) quickly closed the distance in the first round and went in for a takedown. This started a chain of events that was almost frame-by-frame a doppelgänger of their first effort. After a guillotine attempt failed to materialise, the Russian contender switched between submission attempts trying variations of leg locks and knee bars as Evinger showed great flexibility and defence to fight them off.

The champ was resurgent in the second round however as she avoided the techniques more whilst working her trademark ground and pound. The constant pressure from the top forced “Foxy” Kunitskaya to give up her back and from there, Evinger had no hesitation in going for the finish. Securing in the rear-naked-choke, she left her opponent no choice but to tap to bring an end to the fight near the end of round two.

After the fight, “Triple Threat” did not mention the UFC as expected despite now holding a seven fight win streak and not having lost since 2011. The only other black mark in her career since then was a loss to Raquel Pennington during her time on TUF 18.

Kunitskaya (9-3), who has previously appeared for Russian promotion ACB, will need to return to the drawing board after falling to her second defeat in three fights.

Hamasaki has bad night at the office losing to former champ Souza

In the evening’s co-main event, Invicta atomweight champion Ayaka Hamasaki failed in her attempt to move up to the strawweight division as she lost to former champion Livia Renata Souza via a first round TKO.

After a tentative start to the bout from both fighters, the Brazilian started to turn up the pressure on Hamasaki (14-2) and landed an overhand right that dropped the Japanese fighter. Covering up when hitting the mat, referee Mike England inexplicably watched as Souza (10-1) rained down a barrage of strikes on a helpless Hamasaki before stopping the fight.

Meanwhile, Jodie Esquibel bounced back from a loss to Alexa Grasso at Invicta FC 18 by taking a close split decision win over DeAnna Bennett.

The first round did not go the way of the Jackson Wink MMA fighter as Bennett (8-3) locked in a deep armbar which Esquibel (6-2) did fantastically well to defend and survive. After that, the 30-year-old would take over and it was one way traffic as Esquibel would have the better of both rounds on the feet and on the ground. Landing the better combinations, Esquibel would do enough to take the fight on the judges scorecards.

Also on the card, Ashley Cummins and Amber Brown put on an exciting display of grappling as they went back-and-forth for three rounds locked in a BJJ battle which included a rarely seen double triangle as both women would briefly have the submission locked in simultaneously.

Cummins (5-3) would get the better of the scrambles and ground and pound over Brown (6-4) as the fight wore on and grew more dominant by the minute on her way to getting the unanimous decision victory.

Elsewhere, IMMAF 2015 European Open gold medalist Sunna Davíðsdóttir (2-0) would continue to impress in her professional career as she battled to a unanimous decision victory over Mallory Martin (1-1) in a razor-thin war that is sure to secure ‘Fight of the Night’ honors.

Invicta FC 22 Results

Bantamweight Title: Tonya Evinger (c) def. Yana Kunitskaya via Submission (Rear-naked-choke) (Round 2 – 4:32)

Strawweight: Livia Renata Souza def. Ayaka Hamasaki via TKO (Strikes) (Round 1 – 1:41)

Strawweight: Jodie Esquibel def. DeAnna Bennett via Decision (Split) (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)

Atomweight: Ashley Cummins def. Amber Brown via Decision (Unanimous) (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Strawweight: Sunna Davíðsdóttir def. Mallory Martin via Decision (Unanimous) (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)

Strawweight: Miranda Maverick def. Kal Holliday via Submission (Armbar) (Round 1 – 3:01)

Featherweight: Felicia Spencer def. Madison McElhaney via Decision (Unanimous) (30-27, 30-27, 29-28)