Prior to Saturday’s UFC Vegas 65 kicking off, Chase Sherman vs. Waldo Cortes-Acosta was almost an afterthought — at most a vehicle to boost the profile of DWCS product Cortes-Acosta.
With the loss of Saturday’s main event with the card already underway, however, the fight suddenly found itself as the evening’s co-main event. If you needed a little storyline to go with the violence, Sherman was an ex-college football athlete; Cortes-Acosta a former minor league baseball player in the Cincinnati Reds organization.
Cortes-Acosta targeted the body early, while Sherman, taking a page out of the book of Cortes-Acosta’s previous opponent, Jared Vanderaa, chopped at his opponent’s lead leg. The Dominican heavyweight would have to be wary, given the damage he took in that fight just a few weeks ago.
As the round went on, the pair exchanged single strikes, until Waldo put together a combo. Moments later he caught a kick, forcing Sherman back to the fence; Chase reversed, separated, and landed a left hand. He tied things up moments later, looking for a trip. Cortes-Acosta started playing the “hands up/hands down” game, making himself a grounded opponent to avoid Sherman’s knees. They eventually broke with just over 20 seconds remaining, but Sherman finished the round with a takedown.
In the second, Cortes-Acosta came out strong, landing clean on Sherman. Sherman survived, tied things up, and bought some recovery time. After breaking, Sherman then used his hands to close distance and tie up again, but couldn’t get anything done. And at range, Cortes-Acosta was winning the exchanges. Sherman ripped a leg kick; Cortes-Acosta did a bit of showboating. He followed with a pair of jabs and a right hand. Sherman had a leg kick, leading to a low blow that the ref did not see — when Sherman complained, the ref ordered him to fight on.
Chase Sherman was now under fire, and ate a clean right hand. More blows followed, with another right landing flush. Sherman was covering up and trying to escape; Cortes-Acosta poured it on. Sherman somehow survived, firing a front kick. The round came to a close with Sherman still standing.
Despite that onslaught, Cortes-Acosta still had some gas in the tank in the third. He continued to land right hands, one of which rocked Sherman. He survived, and despite his corner’s instructions between rounds, Sherman hadn’t looked to get the fight down. He’d survive the fight, but lose the battle, with Waldo Cortes-Acosta coming away with the decision win.
Official Result: Waldo Cortes-Acosta def. Chase Sherman by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)