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Valentina Shevchenko continues to be unbeatable at 125 pounds.
At UFC 261, Shevchenko (21-3 MMA, 10-2 UFC) successfully defended her UFC women’s flyweight title for the fifth straight time when she defeated Jessica Andrade by TKO at the 3:19 mark of Round 2.
The women’s flyweight title bout was part of the UFC 261 main card at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Fla. It aired on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and early prelims on ESPN+.
In the opening round, Shevchenko’s game plan became clear: Take the fight to the ground. In Round 1 alone, Shevchenko was able to score five takedowns on Andrade (21-9 MMA, 12-7 UFC). Her fourth takedown nearly led to a rear-naked choke submission, but Andrade found a way out.
The second round played out similarly, but with a different ending. While Andrade was able to control Shevchenko in the clinch, her success was short-lived. Shevchenko eventually turned the tide and dumped Andrade to the mat. From there, she moved straight to the crucifix position. Elbow after elbow rained down and blood was drawn. Referee Dan Miragliotta saw enough and stopped Andrade from absorbing any further punishment.
The successful title defense Saturday was Shevchenko’s fifth since her reign as flyweight champion began in December 2018. After she won the vacant title against Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 231, Shevchenko defeated challengers Jessica Eye, Liz Carmouche, Katlyn Chookagian,and Jennifer Maia.
In her UFC tenure, Shevchenko has only lost twice. Both defeats came against the same fighter: current UFC women’s bantamweight and featherweight champion Amanda Nunes.
Andrade came up short in her third title challenge. A former UFC women’s strawweight champion, Andrade is 1-2 in title-clinching bouts. Saturday’s fight was only her second as part of the UFC women’s flyweight division. She falls to 1-3 in her most recent four fights.
Up-to-the-minute UFC 261 results include:
Valentina Shevchenko def. Jessica Andrade via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 3:19
Uriah Hall def. Chris Weidman via TKO (injury) – Round 1, 0:17
Anthony Smith def. Jimmy Crute via TKO (doctor’s stoppage) – Round 1, 5:00
Randy Brown def. Alex Oliveira via submission (rear-naked choke) – Round 1, 2:50
Dwight Grant def. Stefan Sekulic via split decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Brendan Allen def. Karl Roberson via submission (heel hook) – Round 1, 4:55
Pat Sabatini def. Tristan Connelly via unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
Danaa Batgerel def. Kevin Natividad via TKO (punches) – Round 1, 0:50
Kazula Vargas def. Rong Zhu via unanimous decision (30-26, 29-28, 29-28)
Jeffrey Molina def. Qileng Aori via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-27)
Ariane Carnelossi def. Na Liang via TKO (punches) – Round 2, 1:28