In a rematch between lightweight contenders, Beneil Dariush scored his second victory over Diego Ferreira, taking a three-round split decision.
Scores were 29-28 twice and 28-29 for the No. 13-ranked Dariush, now 20-4-1. The No. 10-ranked Ferreira falls to 17-3. Dariush outpointed Ferreira in the first fight in 2014, as well.
There was no dip in the high-level action in the opening round, with some exciting grappling and striking exchanges highlighted by a knee to the body by Dariush that stunned Ferreira and some hard punches upstairs that rocked Dariush late in the frame.
Neither fighter backed away from each other as the second opened, the slugging continuing until a takedown by Dariush in the first minute of the round. Midway through, Ferreira got to his feet and separated, but only for a moment, as the two locked up again. With 1:45 left, there was some more striking until Dariush got another takedown and while Ferreira tried to stay busy, it was the Californian remaining in control.
Determined to keep the fight standing, Ferreira was able to do that for much of the final frame, but with a minute left, Dariush got the fight to the mat and kept it there until a late surge from the Brazilian.
Official Result: Beneil Dariush def. Diego Ferreira by split decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)