Liz Carmouche

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Liz Carmouche
Liz carmouche.jpg
Born (1984-02-19) February 19, 1984 (age 38)
Lafayette, Louisiana, United States
Other namesGirl-Rilla
ResidenceSan Diego, California, United States
Height5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
Weight125 lb (57 kg; 8.9 st)
Reach66 in (168 cm)[1][2]
Fighting out ofSan Diego, California, United States
TeamTeam Hurricane Awesome
TrainerManolo Hernandez
RankBlack belt in 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu[3]
Yellow belt in American Kenpo[4]
Years active2010–present
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout8
By submission3
By decision6
By submission2
By decision5
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog
Military career
Allegiance United States
Service/branchFlag of the United States Marine Corps.svg United States Marine Corps
Years of service2004–2009
Battles/warsWar in Afghanistan
Iraq War

Liz Carmouche (born February 19, 1984) is an American mixed martial arts fighter currently signed to Bellator MMA, where she is the current Bellator Women's Flyweight World Champion. Carmouche competed for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) in the Women's Flyweight and Women's Bantamweight divisions. At the time of her UFC departure, she was #4 in the UFC women's flyweight rankings.[5]

Carmouche competed in the first ever women's MMA match in the UFC when she competed against Ronda Rousey for the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship at UFC 157. A two-time title challenger, Carmouche also challenged for the UFC Women's Flyweight Championship in August 2019 against Valentina Shevchenko. Carmouche was the first openly lesbian fighter in the UFC and was praised by company president Dana White for coming out.[6] As of April 26, 2022, she is #2 in the Bellator Women's pound-for-pound Rankings.[7]

Early life and military service[edit]

Carmouche was born in Lafayette, Louisiana, and grew up on Okinawa, Japan. She is of Lebanese, Irish and Cajun French descent.[8][9] She currently resides in San Diego, California and trains at San Diego Combat Academy.

She went to Okinawa Christian School International in Japan graduating in the class of 2003. She is currently attending San Diego City College studying Kinesiology.[10]

Prior to becoming a professional MMA fighter, Carmouche spent five years in the Marine Corps as an aviation electrician[11] during which she did three tours of duty in the Middle East.[9] Her nickname is Girl-Rilla, earned from her muscular physique and strength that outperforms male counterparts.[12]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Carmouche started her professional career in 2010, winning her first three fights via knockout or submission.


On August 13, 2010, she made her Strikeforce debut at Strikeforce Challengers 10 in a reserve bout for their one-night Women's Welterweight tournament.[13] She defeated Colleen Schneider via unanimous decision after two rounds.[14]

Carmouche returned to the promotion at Strikeforce Challengers 12 on November 19, 2010,[15] where she defeated Jan Finney via TKO in the third round.[16][17]

On February 23, 2011, it was announced that number one title contender Miesha Tate had suffered a knee injury and that Carmouche would step in on short notice to face Women's Bantamweight (135 lbs) champion Marloes Coenen on March 5, 2011 at Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson.[18] Carmouche was defeated via triangle choke in the fourth round, after dominating two of the previous rounds.[19]

On July 22, 2011, Carmouche faced Sarah Kaufman at Strikeforce Challengers: Voelker vs. Bowling III in Las Vegas, Nevada. She was defeated by unanimous decision.[20]

Carmouche was scheduled to return to Strikeforce to face Sara McMann at Strikeforce: Cormier vs. Mir on November 3, 2012,[21] but the event was cancelled.[22]

Invicta Fighting Championships[edit]

Carmouche faced Ashleigh Curry at Invicta Fighting Championships 1 on April 28, 2012.[23] She won the fight via TKO in the first round.[24]

Carmouche faced Kaitlin Young at Invicta Fighting Championships 2 on July 28, 2012.[25] She won the fight via submission due to a rear-naked choke in the second round.[26]

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

It was announced at the UFC on Fox: Henderson vs. Diaz pre-fight press conference by UFC President Dana White that former Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey would be the very first UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion. It was confirmed by White that Carmouche would be challenging Rousey for the Women's Bantamweight title at UFC 157. In the early part of the first round, Carmouche locked in a standing rear-naked choke/face crank on Rousey. However, Rousey escaped and eventually finished the fight by armbar with 11 seconds left in the first round.[27]

Carmouche was expected to face Miesha Tate at UFC on Fox 8 on July 27, 2013.[28] However, Tate was pulled from the bout to participate as a coach on The Ultimate Fighter 18.[29] Carmouche instead faced promotional newcomer Jéssica Andrade. She won the fight by TKO in round two, earning her first win inside the Octagon.[30][31]

In her third UFC fight, Carmouche faced Alexis Davis on November 6, 2013 at UFC Fight Night 31.[32] She lost the fight via unanimous decision.[33][34]

Carmouche faced Miesha Tate in the co-main event at UFC on Fox 11.[35] She lost the back-and-forth fight via unanimous decision.

Carmouche faced Lauren Murphy on April 4, 2015 at UFC Fight Night 63.[36] She won the fight by unanimous decision. However, 10 out of 13 media outlets scored the bout for Murphy, whilst 3 scored it for Carmouche.[37]

Carmouche faced Katlyn Chookagian on November 12, 2016 at UFC 205.[38] She won the fight via split decision.[39]

Flyweight division[edit]

Carmouche faced Alexis Davis in a women's flyweight bout on December 9, 2017 at UFC Fight Night 123.[40] She lost the fight by split decision.[41]

Carmouche faced Jennifer Maia on July 14, 2018 at UFC Fight Night 133.[42] She won the fight by unanimous decision.[43]

Carmouche faced Lucie Pudilová on February 23, 2019 at UFC Fight Night 145.[44] She won the fight by unanimous decision.[45]

A rematch with Valentina Shevchenko was scheduled on August 10, 2019 at UFC Fight Night 156 for the UFC Women's Flyweight Championship.[46] She lost the fight via unanimous decision.[47]

On December 6, 2019, it was announced that Carmouche had been released from the UFC despite signing a new contract after the failed title bid.[48][49]

Bellator MMA[edit]

On December 21, 2019, Carmouche was signed by Bellator MMA.[50]

Carmouche was scheduled to make her debut at Bellator against Mandy Böhm on May 29, 2020 at Bellator 243 but the bout was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[51] Carmouche made her promotional debut against DeAnna Bennett at Bellator 246 on September 12, 2020.[52] At the weigh-ins, Bennett missed weight, weighing in at 131.7 pounds. The bout proceeded as a catchweight and Carmouche was awarded a percentage of Bennett's purse. Carmouche won the bout via third round submission.[53]

Carmouche faced former Invicta FC Flyweight World Champion Vanessa Porto on April 9, 2021 at Bellator 256.[54] She won the bout via a unanimous decision.[55]

Carmouche faced Kana Watanabe on June 25, 2021 at Bellator 261.[56] She won the bout via TKO within 35 seconds of the first round.[57]

Bellator Women's Flyweight World Champion[edit]

Carmouche faced undefeated flyweight champ, Juliana Velasquez for the Bellator Women's Flyweight World Championship on April 22, 2022 at Bellator 278.[58] She won the bout and the title via elbows from crucifix at the end of the fourth round.[59] Following the bout, Velasquez's team appealed the result on the grounds of refereeing error made by Mike Beltran, but the appeal was denied by the Hawaii State Boxing Commission.[60]

In a title rematch, Carmouche is scheduled to face Juliana Velasquez on December 9, 2022 at Bellator 289.[61]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Carmouche is openly lesbian, and has a son with her wife.[64][49] She has a tattoo on her left side representing the Chinese zodiac symbol of her mother and sister.[65][66] Carmouche is the spokesperson for Medical Marijuana Inc. on the cannabidiol (CBD) therapeutic benefits for athletes.[67]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Professional record breakdown
24 matches 17 wins 7 losses
By knockout 8 0
By submission 3 2
By decision 6 5
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Win 17–7 Juliana Velasquez TKO (elbows) Bellator 278 April 22, 2022 4 4:47 Honolulu, Hawaii, United States Won the Bellator Women's Flyweight World Championship.
Win 16–7 Kana Watanabe TKO (punches) Bellator 261 June 25, 2021 1 0:35 Uncasville, Connecticut, United States
Win 15–7 Vanessa Porto Decision (unanimous) Bellator 256 April 9, 2021 3 5:00 Uncasville, Connecticut, United States
Win 14–7 DeAnna Bennett Submission (rear-naked choke) Bellator 246 September 12, 2020 3 3:17 Uncasville, Connecticut, United States Catchweight (131.7 lbs) bout; Bennett missed weight.
Loss 13–7 Valentina Shevchenko Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Shevchenko vs. Carmouche 2 August 10, 2019 5 5:00 Montevideo, Uruguay For the UFC Women's Flyweight Championship.
Win 13–6 Lucie Pudilová Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Błachowicz vs. Santos February 23, 2019 3 5:00 Prague, Czech Republic
Win 12–6 Jennifer Maia Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: dos Santos vs. Ivanov July 14, 2018 3 5:00 Boise, Idaho, United States
Loss 11–6 Alexis Davis Decision (split) UFC Fight Night: Swanson vs. Ortega December 9, 2017 3 5:00 Fresno, California, United States Flyweight debut.
Win 11–5 Katlyn Chookagian Decision (split) UFC 205 November 12, 2016 3 5:00 New York City, New York, United States
Win 10–5 Lauren Murphy Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Mendes vs. Lamas April 4, 2015 3 5:00 Fairfax, Virginia, United States
Loss 9–5 Miesha Tate Decision (unanimous) UFC on Fox: Werdum vs. Browne April 19, 2014 3 5:00 Orlando, Florida, United States
Loss 9–4 Alexis Davis Decision (unanimous) UFC: Fight for the Troops 3 November 6, 2013 3 5:00 Fort Campbell, Kentucky, United States
Win 9–3 Jéssica Andrade TKO (punches and elbows) UFC on Fox: Johnson vs. Moraga July 27, 2013 2 3:57 Seattle, Washington, United States
Loss 8–3 Ronda Rousey Submission (armbar) UFC 157 February 23, 2013 1 4:49 Anaheim, California, United States For the UFC Women's Bantamweight Championship.
Win 8–2 Kaitlin Young Submission (rear-naked choke) Invicta FC 2: Baszler vs. McMann July 28, 2012 2 3:34 Kansas City, Kansas, United States
Win 7–2 Ashleigh Curry TKO (punches) Invicta FC 1: Coenen vs. Ruyssen April 28, 2012 1 1:58 Kansas City, Kansas, United States
Loss 6–2 Sarah Kaufman Decision (unanimous) Strikeforce Challengers: Voelker vs. Bowling III July 22, 2011 3 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Loss 6–1 Marloes Coenen Submission (triangle choke) Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson March 5, 2011 4 1:29 Columbus, Ohio, United States For the Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Championship.
Win 6–0 Jan Finney TKO (punches) Strikeforce Challengers: Wilcox vs. Ribeiro November 19, 2010 3 1:30 Jackson, Mississippi, United States
Win 5–0 Valentina Shevchenko TKO (doctor stoppage) C3 Fights: Red River Rivalry September 30, 2010 2 3:00 Concho, Oklahoma, United States
Win 4–0 Colleen Schneider Decision (unanimous) Strikeforce Challengers: Riggs vs. Taylor August 13, 2010 2 3:00 Phoenix, Arizona, United States Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Tournament reserve bout.
Win 3–0 Margarita de la Cruz Ramirez TKO (doctor stoppage) Ultimate Warrior Challenge 7 June 26, 2010 2 5:00 Tijuana, Mexico
Win 2–0 Aleena Albertson Submission (armbar) Native Fighting Championship 5 May 29, 2010 2 0:48 Campo, California, United States
Win 1–0 Trudie Ginn TKO (body kick) Independent Event March 13, 2010 1 2:59 Tijuana, Mexico


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Liz Carmouche - Official UFC Fighter Profile". 14 September 2018. Retrieved February 22, 2019.
  2. ^ "Fight Card - UFC Fight Night Werdum vs. Browne". Archived from the original on November 19, 2014. Retrieved April 21, 2014.
  3. ^ Averi Clements (December 3, 2018). "UFC Fighter & Marine Veteran Liz Carmouche Has Received Her BJJ Black Belt". Jiu-Jitsu Times.
  4. ^ Key Martial Arts/The Dojo Oceanside, CA
  5. ^ "Rankings | UFC". Retrieved 2019-09-09.
  6. ^ "Dana White on gay fighter Liz Carmouche: 'I love what she did'". 2012-12-19. Retrieved 2012-12-19.
  7. ^ "Bellator Rankings". Retrieved 2021-06-16.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  8. ^ "Liz Carmouche".
  9. ^ a b "Liz Carmouche's Bio". 2011-02-23. Retrieved 2011-02-23.
  10. ^[user-generated source]
  11. ^ "Meet Liz Carmouche". 2011-05-19. Retrieved 2012-11-01.
  12. ^ "They call her 'Girl-Rilla' or 'beast,' but carmouche's calling out rousey". The San Diego Union-Tribute. 2012-10-15. Retrieved 2021-11-08.
  13. ^ "Strikeforce Women's Tournament Reserve Bout Set". 2010-08-03. Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  14. ^ "Miesha Tate Wins Strikeforce Women's Tournament". 2010-08-13. Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  15. ^ "Finney vs Carmouche Planned For November 19th". 2010-10-31. Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  16. ^ "Strikeforce Challengers 12 Live Play-By-Play & Results". 2010-11-19. Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  17. ^ "Wilcox Outboxes 'Shaolin,' Calls Out Beerbohm". 2010-11-20. Retrieved 2011-04-03.
  18. ^ "Tate out at "Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson," Carmouche challenges Coenen for belt". 2011-02-23. Archived from the original on 2011-02-26. Retrieved 2011-02-23.
  19. ^ "Champ Comes Back: Marloes Coenen Submits Liz Carmouche". 2011-03-05. Retrieved 2011-03-06.
  20. ^ "Strikeforce Challengers 17 Live Play-By-Play & Results". 2011-07-22. Retrieved 2011-08-01.
  21. ^ "Sara McMann vs. Liz Carmouche Slated for Strikeforce: Cormier vs. Mir". 2012-09-07. Retrieved 2012-09-17.
  22. ^ "Strikeforce cancels Nov. 3 event in Oklahoma City, plans January return". 2012-10-12. Archived from the original on 2012-11-09. Retrieved 2012-11-01.
  23. ^ "Invicta Fighting Championships 1 Main Card Bouts Revealed". 2012-02-20. Retrieved 2012-02-20.
  24. ^ "Invicta FC 1 Results: Marloes Coenen, Jessica Penne Victorious". 2012-04-29. Retrieved 2012-04-29.
  25. ^ "Liz Carmouche vs Kaitlin Young Booked For Invicta FC 2 Card". 2012-05-29. Retrieved 2012-05-29.
  26. ^ "Invicta FC 2 Results: McMann, Davis & Carmouche Victorious". 2012-07-29. Retrieved 2012-07-30.
  27. ^ "Ronda Rousey now has championship belt, first UFC opponent". 2012-12-06. Retrieved 2012-12-06.
  28. ^ "Johnson vs. Moraga at UFC on FOX". 2013-04-24. Retrieved 2013-04-26.
  29. ^ A.J. Perez (2013-05-28). "Tate replacing Zingano on TUF". Retrieved 2013-05-28.
  30. ^ "Liz Carmouche, Germaine De Randamie Win At UFC On FOX 8". 2013-07-27. Retrieved 2013-07-28.
  31. ^ "UFC on FOX 8 results/photos: Liz Carmouche pounds out Jessica Andrade in second". 2013-07-27. Retrieved 2013-07-28.
  32. ^ "Liz Carmouche vs. Alexis Davis booked for 'UFN 31: UFC Fight for the Troops 3'". 2013-09-06. Archived from the original on 2013-09-08. Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  33. ^ "Alexis Davis, Amanda Nunes Victorious At UFC Fight Night 31". 2013-11-06. Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  34. ^ "UFC Fight Night 31 results, photos: Alexis Davis kicks way past Liz Carmouche". 2013-11-07. Retrieved 2013-12-01.
  35. ^ Steven Marrocco (2014-01-13). "UFC on FOX 11 heads to Florida with Werdum vs. Browne, Tate vs. Carmouche". Retrieved 2014-01-13.
  37. ^ MMADecisions (2015-04-04). "Liz Carmouche defeats Lauren Murphy".
  38. ^ Kaplan, Michael (2016-11-06). "This hot bartender is ready to fight at UFC 205". New York Post. Retrieved 2018-12-19.
  39. ^ "UFC 205 results: Liz Carmouche tops Katlyn Chookagian by split call in historic New York City opener". MMAjunkie. 2016-11-13. Retrieved 2018-12-19.
  40. ^ "Carmouche, Davis, More Added To UFC Fight Night Fresno | Fightful MMA". Retrieved 2017-09-29.
  41. ^ "UFC Fight Night 123 results: Alexis Davis takes split from Liz Carmouche in flyweight rematch". MMAjunkie. 2017-12-10. Retrieved 2017-12-10.
  42. ^ "First Three Fights Announced for UFC Fight Night In Boise – 99.1". Retrieved 2018-04-20.[permanent dead link]
  43. ^ "UFC Fight Night 133 results: Takedowns help Liz Carmouche to decision win over Jennifer Maia". MMAjunkie. 2018-07-14. Retrieved 2018-07-15.
  44. ^ "Pudilová v Praze vyzve ženu, která zlámala čelist Rondě Rousey!". (in Czech). 2018-12-12. Retrieved 2018-12-12.
  45. ^ "UFC Prague results: Liz Carmouche survives scrappy Lucie Pudilova on enemy soil". MMAjunkie. 2019-02-23. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  46. ^ Jon Fuentes (2019-06-19). "Breaking: Valentina Shevchenko Will Defend Title Against Liz Carmouche In UFC Montevideo Main Event". Retrieved 2019-06-19.
  47. ^ Harshman, Heath (2019-08-10). "UFC Uruguay Results: Champion Valentina Shevchenko Dominates Liz Carmouche in Unanimous Decision Win". Cageside Press. Retrieved 2019-08-11.
  48. ^ "Two-time UFC title challenger Liz Carmouche released from contract". December 6, 2019. Retrieved December 6, 2019.
  49. ^ a b Nolan King (December 6, 2019). "Liz Carmouche 'a little bit pained' by unexpected UFC release during promotional appearances".
  50. ^ "Ex-UFC fighter Carmouche signs with Bellator". 2019-12-21. Retrieved 2019-12-29.
  51. ^ Martin, Damon (2020-03-06). "Liz Carmouche books main event fight against Mandy Bohm in Bellator debut". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2020-03-07.
  52. ^ "Liz Carmouche vs. DeAnna Bennett, Campos vs. Huerta among Bellator 246 additions". August 21, 2020.
  53. ^ "Bellator 246 results: Liz Carmouche finishes DeAnna Bennett in third". MMA Junkie. 2020-09-13. Retrieved 2021-07-04.
  54. ^ Kaplan, Amy (22 March 2021). "Bellator 256: Liz Carmouche vs. Vanessa Porto official for April 9". FanSided. Retrieved 22 March 2021.
  55. ^ Anderson, Jay (9 April 2021). "Bellator 256 Results: Liz Carmouche Imposes Her Will Against Vanessa Porto". Cageside Press. Retrieved 10 April 2021.
  56. ^ "Liz Carmouche vs. Kana Watanabe co-headines Bellator 261 on June 25". MMA Junkie. 2021-06-08. Retrieved 2021-06-08.
  57. ^ Anderson, Jay (2021-06-25). "Bellator 261: Liz Carmouche Mauls Kana Watanabe to Earn Title Shot". Cageside Press. Retrieved 2021-06-26.
  58. ^ "Bellator 278 headliner set with Juliana Velasquez defending against Liz Carmouche". MMA Junkie. 2022-03-22. Retrieved 2022-03-22.
  59. ^ Anderson, Jay (2022-04-23). "Bellator 278: Liz Carmouche Claims Gold with Fourth-Round TKO of Juliana Velasquez". Cageside Press. Retrieved 2022-04-23.
  60. ^ Guilherme Cruz (July 5, 2022). "Juliana Velasquez appeal of Bellator 278 title loss to Liz Carmouche denied by Hawaii commission".
  61. ^ Cruz, Guilherme (2022-09-14). "Flyweight champion Liz Carmouche, Juliana Velasquez set to rematch at Bellator 289". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 2022-09-14.
  62. ^ Jed Meshew (April 23, 2022). "Bellator 278 results: Liz Carmouche claims flyweight title with controversial finish over Juliana Velasquez". MMA Fighting.
  63. ^ "WMMA Press Awards 2010". Retrieved 2016-02-24.
  64. ^ Davidson, Neil (25 July 2013). "UFC to make history with two openly lesbian fighters set to face off in Seattle". The Canadian Press. Retrieved 25 November 2013.
  65. ^
  66. ^ LIZ CARMOUCHE [@iamgirlrilla] (10 July 2017). "I'm not big on putting my personal business out there but Wikipedia and Google are messing up. I am not dating Elisa as of four years ago" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  67. ^ "Liz Carmouche, cannabis spokesperson, ready to clear up misinformation on hemp oil". Retrieved 2018-01-25.
  68. ^ "Liz". Sherdog. Retrieved 2019-08-10.

External links[edit]