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Marion Reneau plans appeal of sketchy decision loss to Ashlee Evans-Smith

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Marion Reneau's fight will continue after the final bell.

The UFC women's bantamweight contender plans on appealing her controversial, split decision loss to Ashlee Evans-Smith from UFC Fight Night: Cowboy vs. Cowboy on Sunday in Pittsburgh with the Pennsylvania Athletic Commission.

"As I look at it now, I'm kind of disappointed," Reneau told MMA Fighting. "I'm kind of disappointed that somebody is not owning up to their mistake. Because that's what I believe it was. I believe they confused us, in some way shape or form."

Reneau won the first round rather clearly. She rocked Evans-Smith against the cage with a right hand early on and landed hard punches after that. Then, late in the round, Reneau cinched in a tight guillotine choke. Evans-Smith was in danger of being finished when the horn sounded to end the frame.

In between those two events, Evans-Smith did not mount any significant offense. Yet, two judges -- Phil Rogers and Andrew Adkins -- scored the round for Evans-Smith. Reneau believes that one or both of those judges got her and Evans-Smith mixed up because it was so outlandish that any judge scored that first round for Evans-Smith.

"I just don't think they had the right person," Reneau said. "They're not going to own up to that mistake. They're just not. It's just gonna be one of those things that I'm gonna have to swallow and it's painful to swallow.

"For obvious reasons, Ashlee did not win the first round and two judges gave her the first round. I don't know. I swear to you, I do not know what they were watching."

The whole scorecard was odd. Adkins gave Evans-Smith all three rounds, while Rogers actually had Reneau winning the second and third rounds. The other judge, John Lapcevic, had his score added wrong. It was listed on the official card as 29-27 for Evans-Smith, but really added up to 29-28.

All but one media outlet scored the fight for Reneau, according to Two media outlets actually had Reneau winning the first round 10-8, which was a much more logical score than 10-9 for Evans-Smith.

Reneau (6-3) earned $15,000 to show Sunday night and would have made double that had she won.

"That's a $15,000 mistake," she said. "That's a lot."

Bad decisions from judges can affect a fighter's career. Now, Reneau has lost two in a row rather than bouncing back from a July loss to Holly Holm.

Reneau, 38, said she was told that Pennsylvania Athletic Commission executive director Greg Sirb would review the tape of the fight. It's unclear what chance, if any, the fight had to actually be overturned. But this one ranks up there with the worst decisions in recent memory, the first round specifically.

Sirb told MMA Fighting on Sunday night that his judges did not get Reneau and Evans-Smith confused.

"Everybody knew [who was who]," Sirb said. "We talked about [the decision], and it was straight-up. They said she [Evans-Smith] won most of the [first] round, and Reneau came on strong. [Reneau] threw a flurry, but [Evans-Smith] blocked everything and then Reneau had her in some type of choke, probably 10 seconds left."