Invicta Fighting Championships, an all-women's world championship Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fight series led by longtime MMA industry executive Shannon Knapp, will launch with a stacked, 11-bout fight card headlined by a long-awaited featherweight (145 pounds) rematch between superstar Marloes Coenen (19-5) of The Netherlands and Romy Ruyssen (5-1) of France at Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan. on Sat., April 28.
Tickets for the first-ever Invicta Fighting Championships event, priced from $35, go on sale Fri., Feb. 24 at Memorial Hall box office (913) 549-4853), online at Ticketmaster.com and InvictaFC.com and by phone at (800) 745-3000.
In the co-main event, two 29-year-old submission specialists - Jessica Penne (8-1) of Laguna Hills, Calif. and Lisa Ellis-Ward (14-7) of Lacey, Wash.- will square off with one another at strawweight (105 pounds).
Strikeforce bantamweight (135 pounds) stars Liz "Girl-Rilla" Carmouche (5-2) of San Diego, Calif. and Sarah D'Alelio (4-2) of San Jose, Calif. have also been enlisted for action. Carmouche, a United States Marine who did three tours of duty in The Middle East, will square off with unbeaten prospect Ashleigh Curry (1-0) of Kansas City, Mo. while D'Alelio will face Shana "Rock Solid" Nelson (5-2) of Hibbing, Minn.
"The time has come for a platform dedicated exclusively to building the growing women's division in our great sport," said Invicta Fighting Championships Vice President Knapp, who has held positions with the UFC, the IFL and, most recently Strikeforce, where she served as head of fighter relations and a core member of the promotion's matchmaking team, until shortly after Strikeforce was acquired by the parent company of its top competitor, the UFC. "Invicta is committed to increasing the depth of the women's field and building female superstars by providing women athletes with the opportunity to compete and hone their skills on a consistent basis throughout the year.