Benson Henderson and Peter Queally capped off an exciting night of fights at Bellator 285 in Dublin, Ireland — and the lightweight pair went right to work.
With the Irish crowd chanting and cheering on local hero Queally following his traditional walkout to The Cranberries’ Zombie, the pair came together in a few quick clashes punctuated by kicks. Just under two minutes in, however, former UFC champ Henderson shot for a takedown — an attempt that was stuffed, and led to the crowd at the 3Arena breaking out in their own rendition of Zombie.
Henderson, however, would then trap Queally against the cage, firing some knees to the thigh before the Irish fighter escaped. They returned to center for just a moment before Henderson drove his opponent right back to the fence, still showing surprising quickness and explosiveness at age 38. Soon after, however, Henderson was on the outside, Queally stalking him and landing at least one solid blow before “Bendo” escaped and began pressuring himself.
Round two was halted almost immediately as Henderson landed low with a quick. Queally took plenty of time to recover, and rightfully so. On the restart, however, it didn’t take long for Henderson to get the fight down — though Queally scrambled to the fence and wall-walked up, with Henderson still on him. Clinch work would eat up a large portion of the round from there, though they would finish the frame swinging.
Heading into the third, Henderson was almost certainly ahead. He implemented his game plan early, trapped Queally against the fence and getting him down. When the Irish fighter worked up, he was taken down again, legs pulled out from under him. Moving to a three-point stance, Queally wound up eating several knees to the thigh. Once upright, he fired an elbow, hitting Henderson, but was still pulled back down.
Nothing Peter Queally had done through the first three rounds was any answer for the pressure and grappling of Benson Henderson. Round four started out in similar fashion as the third, Henderson putting Queally against the fence, getting him down (or at least to a knee) and firing knees to the thigh. Queally making it to his feet and off the fence drew a cheer from the crowd, but Henderson pressed forward, ripped the body, and put his opponent back on the fence. They’d spend more time there, with Henderson at one point landing clubbing blows to Queally’s ribs.
Round five found Peter Queally in need of a finish if he were to have any hope of winning the fight. Henderson had not slowed, however, and used kicks and his right hand to back Queally up. Soon enough, Henderson had a leg in hand, and backed Queally up to the fence. There, as he had throughout the fight, Queally struggled to make something happen. He defended the takedown with a guillotine that wasn’t in tight enough, and soon bailed on it. This time, however, Queally used leverage and sheer strength to push Henderson off him. That gave the Irish fighter roughly two minutes to make something happen.
Instead, Henderson ripped the body again, changed levels, grabbed on to a leg and drove Queally into the fence. Queally put on the guillotine again, with about a minute left. But again, he didn’t have it, and Henderson easily slipped out. They’d go to the bell, with Henderson a lock in the end.
Official Result: Benson Henderson def. Peter Queally by unanimous decision (49-45, 49-45, 49-45)