Diego Rivas had a fired-up Chilean crowd on his his side on Saturday night. The only Chile native on the card in the UFC’s debut event in Santiago had ear-splitting support in his bantamweight bout against Guido Cannetti.
But the white-hot atmosphere wasn’t enough to lift him to victory, as Cannetti, from rival Argentina, emerged victorious. Cannetti took the first two rounds and held on in the third to earn a unanimous decision at UFC Chile. The judges’ scores were 29-28 across the board.
After a prolonged clinch-fest in the opening round, Rivas scored a trip. Cannetti ended up on top, only to have Rivas apply an armbar. Cannetti broke the armbar with a slam, got Rivas’ back, and stayed there awhile, even after Rivas got back to his feet.
With the exception of a brief-but-tight Rivas guillotine, Cannetti dominated the second round.
Rivas rebounded to win the third, opening a nasty cut over Cannetti’s right eye with a knee in the clinch and following with a wicked standing elbow. But following that exchange, Rivas did not show urgency for the finish, which meant he won the round but lost the fight.
Cannetti (8-3) has now won two of his past three. Rivas (7-2) has dropped two in a row.