All women’s promotion Invicta Fighting Championships is looking to take its brand to a new location, Southern California. Invicta’s President, Shannon Knapp, revealed the promotion will venture away from its usual stomping grounds of Kansas City, Kan. and is targeting the UCI Bren Events Center in Irvine for an April event.

As announced during its fourth event, the April card will feature two title fights.

Recently-crowned atomweight champion Jessica Penne will make the first defense of her belt against “The Karate Hottie” Michelle Waterson.  Penne earned the promotion’s first title at Invicta FC 3 by submitting Naho Sugiyama. Meanwhile, Waterson claimed a narrow, split decision win over Lacey Schuckman at the same event.

Also, the promotion will crown its inaugural flyweight champion as Barb Honchak battles Brazilian Vanessa Porto. Honchak has picked up two wins under the Invicta banner and is currently riding a six-fight winning streak. Porto fell in her Invicta debut to Sarah D’Alelio, but scored a dominant win over MMA pioneer Tara LaRosa in her 125-pound debut.

Knapp originally stated the promotion was looking at an April 13 date, but with the UFC announcing that it would be hosting The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale on that date, she quickly tweeted that Invicta would look at a different date.

In addition to the title fights, Knapp hinted that multiple fighters from its latest event on Jan. 5 would also grace April’s card, including strawweights Bec Hyatt and Rose Namajunas, as well as featherweight Veronica Rothenhausler. As Knapp told The MMA Corner following the promotion’s last event, Sarah Kaufman is expected to make her promotional debut on the April fight card, possibly against Leslie Smith.

Broadcast plans for the event have yet to be announced, but Knapp was less than pleased with the outcome of the promotion’s attempt at a pay-per-view stream on Ustream at its most recent event.

Photo: Michelle Waterson (Jeff Vulgamore/The MMA Corner)

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