Kyoji Horiguchi fell to his second successive defeat at Bellator 279 as Patchy Mix progressed to the semi finals of the Bantamweight Grand Prix at his expense. The American took a step closer to claiming the $1 million USD in prize money on the table for the tournament winner.

Horiguchi is the former 135lbs champion in both Bellator and Rizin and the Japanese star looked on course to win the title back when he faced Sergio Pettis in December. But having dominated the fight, he got caught by a spectacular knockout in the fourth round.

Mix was diligent here as he closed the distance and took his opponent’s back about a minute into the contest. Having locked in the body triangle the taller fighter was able to drag the former champ to the canvas and look for the rear naked choke. Horiguchi showcased his light evasive footwork in the second round as he danced on the outside and looked to land some big shots.

Patchy Mix gets kicked in the head by Kyoji Horiguchi at Bellator 279 in Honolulu

Solid work

He found a home for the left hook in the third and did some solid work to the body but was caught with another takedown midway through the round as Mix took his back once more. The New Yorker was left bloodied from Horguchi’s shots but got off some punches of his own as he sought out the choke.

‘The Typhoon’ continued to show slick movement and cracked Mix with a big leg kick in the fourth. The Xtreme Couture fighter looked to catch his Horiguchi on the way in and left his him with a cut above his left eye.

The final round saw Mix shoot in – and while his opponent resisted the takedown initially, the southpaw was able to take his back and lock in another body triangle. With a few minutes left he was able to get the Asian MMA icon to the deck. Horiguchi reversed the position as Mix went for the guillotine before finding the back again.

The former King of the Cage champion took the decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-47) and extends his record to 16-1. He’ll face one of Magomed Magomedov or Enrique Barzola in the semi-final. Meanwhile, it’s back to the drawing board for Horiguchi who slips to 29-5.

Bellator 279, Honolulu, March 12th
Cris Cyborg def. Arlene Blencowe by Decision (Unanimous)
Raufeon Stots def. Juan Archuleta by TKO (Knee and punches) at 0:16 of Round 3
Justine Kish def. Ilima-Lei Macfarlane by Decision (Unanimous)
Patchy Mix def. Kyoji Horiguchi by Decision (Unanimous)
Yancy Medeiros def. Emmanuel Sanchez by Decision (Unanimous)
Goiti Yamauchi def. Levan Chokheli by submission (armbar) at 3:49 of Round 1
Bobby King def. Keoni Diggs by Decision (Split)
Dayana Silva def. Janay Harding by Decision (Unanimous)
Lance Gibson Jr. def. Nainoa Dung by Decision (Unanimous)
Justin Gonzales def. Kai Kamaka III by Decision (Split)
Sumiko Inaba def. Whittany Pyles via KO (punches) at 1:22 of Round 1
Randi Field def. Maraya Miller via submission (rear-naked choke) at 0:48 of Round 2
Jordan Winski def. Ryan Dela Cruz by Decision (Unanimous)