Monterrey, Mexico- Enrique Barzola’s takedowns and activity from top position were too much for Horacio Gutierrez to contend with in the TUF: Latin America 155 lbs. finals.
UFC Fight Night 78 was held on November 21, 2015 at the Arena Monterrey in Monterrey, Mexico.
Gutierrez started the bout out by stalking Barzola, who was the more active with his footwork. Gutierrez was clearly looking to land something heavy from the very start, but he eventually made a mistake that allowed Barzola to slip behind and slam him hard to the mat. The rest of the opening round saw Barzola implement his ground game and control the favored Gutierrez with position and ground and pound.
It was more of the same at the beginning of Round 2. Gutierrez came forward, but Barzola caught a kick and planted his man square on the canvas. It was clear that Gutierrez was at a disadvantage on the mat and couldn’t do much other than try and push Barzola away with his legs. Barzola continued to land while in top position, opening Gutierrez up in the process. He did a good job of pinning “The Punisher’s” head to the mat while simultaneously covering his mouth and limiting his ability to draw breathe.
Barzola was busted open himself at this point, probably from one of many up-kicks being thrown by Gutierrez, but he was still able to pass 100 strikes landed while on the ground before the end of the 2nd stanza.
Going into the final round, it was clear that Gutierrez was behind on the cards and would need a finish to earn himself the 155 lbs. TUF: Latin America championship. Barzola seemed to be the more tired of the two, but was still the more mobile as Gutierrez continued to come forward slowly while looking for a fight-ending blow. Just as it seemed Guiterrez was finally gaining some momentum, however, “El Fuerte” scored with another takedown. The Peruvian fighter refused to allow Gutierrez back to his feet and continued to chip away with moderately powerful shots from the top. Body shots, hammerfists, and elbows rained down on Gutierrez almost at will and he looked helpless to stop the onslaught. Barzola never really threatened to finish the affair, but he gave the Mexican zero chance to escape as he pounded away.
Gutierrez simply had no answer for Enrique Barzola’s game on top and could basically do nothing outside of defend himself for the majority of the battle. Had he been capable of keeping the bout standing, he may have stood a chance on the cards, but Barzola’s takedowns were too much for him to overcome.
All three judges saw that bout as a clean sweep for Barzola, with one even awarding him a 10-8 round. Enrique Barzola captured the 155 lbs. TUF: Latin America title with the dominating performance.
Along with that title, Barzola extended his record to 11-1-1. Horacio Gutierrez fell to 2-2 due to the defeat.Check out our latest podcast episode featuring a conversation with Cortney Casey.