Cagewriter - Mixed Martial Arts

Voelker recovers from bad start, TKOs Bowling in second

Book Bobby Voelker-Roger Bowling fights every month! What fan is going to complain? They've fought three times and each bout has been a barnburner. Friday night at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, Voelker scored a nice comeback win by landing a nasty knee in the second round that Bowling never recovered from. Voelker wobbled Bowling with a right knee, saw his opponent's legs fail him, and then finished with nine unanswered shots on the ground at 2:15 of the second round at Strikeforce Challengers 17 .

"It was pretty suspenseful," Voelker told Showtime's Mauro Ranallo. "He was winning the whole way."

Voelker recovers from bad start, TKOs Bowling in second

Voelker's now won two straight against Bowling, but the loser has nothing to be ashamed about. Bowling outclassed Voelker (24-8) throughout the first round. He dominated the stand up with nasty legs kicks and a great left hook. He actually had Voelker on shaky legs in the final minute of the first, but didn't pour it on.

For some reason in the second, Bowling tried to wrestle and work the clinch game. At 5-foot-8, against the 6-1 Voelker, that proved to be a horrible move. With his back on the cage, Voelker got a thai clinch on Bowling's head and pulled his noggin down into that bigĀ  knee. Bowling stumbled backwards and his legs were gone.

Voelker deserves a lot of credit. Some of Bowling's shots in the first would've broken a weaker fighter. The 32-year-old said it was part of the plan against the less-experienced Bowling.

"I just knew he was coming in hard. He always does, that's the way he fights. It's just balls to the wall, ready to take your head off," Voelker said. "I knew I had to wait a little bit, weather the storm and he'd lower his hands a little bit or fade, and I'd catch him with something like I did."

Voelker's won 4-of-5 with Strikeforce and may set for a jump to Strikeforce's bigger shows. According to Yahoo! Sports' Kevin Iole, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker is considering giving Voelker the winner of the Scott Smith-Tarec Saffiedine fight.

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