10/10 MAE YOUNG CLASSIC 2018 – EP. 6: Zeuxis vs. Io Sharai, Deonna Purrazzo vs. Xia Li, Teagan Nox vs. Nicole Matthews, Mia Yim vs. Kaitlyn

By Nate Lindberg, PWTorch Contributor


MAE YOUNG CLASSIC II – EPISODE SIX
PREMIERED ON OCT 10, 2018
TAPED IN ORLANDO, FLA. AT FULL SAIL UNIVERSITY
AIRED ON WWE NETWORK

Announcers: Michael Cole, Renee Young, Beth Phoenix.

-The second round of the quarterfinals kicked off with a video package highlighting last week’s round, and hyping the four matches for tonight’s episode.

-Michael Cole introduced himself and his two counterparts, Beth Phoenix and Renee Young. Getting straight into the action, they announce the first match.

(1) Zeuxis vs. Io Sharai

In their native languages, Io Shirai said that this is her opportunity to make her name known to the world, and Zeuxis said that she is here to make history and leave her mark in women’s wrestling. Highlights of their first-round matches played as a voiceover of Cole talked up each competitor.

-Cutting back to Full Sail, three of the Four Horsewomen (The MMA Horsewomen, that is) were shown ringside. Jessamyn Duke, Marina Shafir and former NXT Women’s Champion as well as last year’s MYC finalist Shayna Baszler waved to the cameras and the crowd.

-Zeuxis made her way to the ring first to no reaction from the Full Sail crowd. The announcers talked about her first-round match, as highlights played on split screen. Io Shirai made her entrance next, garnering a loud pop from the crowd. Cole called her one of the most decorated wrestlers on the planet, with highlights of her first-round match playing on split screen.

Analysis: Not only do the fans love Io Shirai, but Cole seemed to as well. He called her one of the most decorated wrestlers on the planet. Not one of the most decorated WOMEN’S wrestlers. Granted, this is an all-women’s tournament, but still. It’s nice that her accolades are recognized as impressive throughout all of wrestling, regardless of gender.

-Phoenix mentions that this is the first time these two competitors will cross paths, as the two women meet in the center of the ring for the handshake. Their hands meet for the shake, and Shirai then made a power play by pulling Zeuxis in close to her as if to say, “I respect you, but I will beat you.”

-The ref called for the bell and the two circle each other in the ring as “Let’s Go Io!” chants can be heard throughout the arena. The two lock up, and Zeuxis backed Shirai into the ropes. The ref broke them up, and they locked up once more. Shirai gains the advantage and bounces off the ropes to attack Zeuxis, who ducked out of the way. Twice more Shirai ran the ropes and attacked with Zeuxis ducking, before Shirai landed a dropkick sending Zeuxis flying through the ropes and onto the floor.

-Shirai threw her back into the ring and went for a springboard move from the apron, but was met with a forearm to the face, knocking Shirai into a sitting position on the apron. Zeuxis followed the forearm up with a basement dropkick, which sent Shirai sailing off the apron and onto the mat, where she sold her right shoulder.

-At the ref’s 5, Shirai got back into the ring. Zeuxis attacked the injured arm and locked in a submission. Shirai tried rolling out, but Zeuxis locked it in harder. Shirai escaped, and tried catching her breath by sitting in the corner, only to be met with a running double knee. Zeuxis made a cover, but Shirai kicked at two. Shirai fired back and tripped up Zeuxis knocking her down. Shirai slid to the apron, and jumped over the ropes to deliver a knee to the back of a prone Zeuxis.

-Zeuxis sat in the corner to catch her breath this time and Shirai applied a double foot choke, breaking it before the ref completed his five count by doing a handstand from the top rope falling into a double knee to Zeuxis. Shirai ran to the opposite corner and charged for a Metora. Zeuxis rolled out of the ring, and Shirai nailed a scary looking suicide dive. She threw Zeuxis into the ring and made a cover for two.

-Shirai locked in a cross face and was countered by Zeuxis with a Michinoku driver. She went up top for a moonsault, and planted herself on the mat as Shirai rolled out of the way. Shirai dropkicked her in the face and went up top for a moonsault, but got hung up on the top ropes when Zeuxis took her knees out. Zeuxis looked for a Spanish fly from the top, but Shirai countered and nailed a top rope hurricanrana, followed by a double knee to the back of her neck. Shirai went up top and landed the Asai Moonsault for the win.

WINNER: Io Shirai

Analysis: I was a little conflicted coming out of this bout. It was a good match, but not a great match. Maybe my expectations were a high, and I thought I’d see something unique from these two. But it felt like your typical WWE babyface match formula. Some back and forth to start, heel gets knocked out of the ring, suicide dive, a couple false finishes, finisher reversals and then the face nails their finisher for the win. There was nothing in this match for either woman to be ashamed about, but it wasn’t a “slobberknocker” either.

(2) Deonna Purrazzo vs. Xia Li

-The hype package for round two kicked off with Deonna Purazzo saying that this is her opportunity to show the world who she is. She said to have this chance is very special. Xia Li said she wants to show all of us who she is. This is her dream, and she will prove it. She trains every day, very hard, and knows she will win.

-Full Sail favorite, and NXT North American Champion, Ricochet was shown sitting ringside for this contest.

-Purrazzo made her way to the ring first to a lukewarm pop from the crowd. Highlights of her first-round victory over Priscilla Kelly were shown on split screen as the announcers sang her praises. Li entered next, with her first-round highlights on split screen as well.

-The two shook hands as the ref called for the bell. They lock up and exchange holds back and forth. Li locked in a headscissors, and Purrazzo used a headstand to escape. Purrazzo took Li down with a Russian leg sweep for a cover. She tried locking in an arm submission, but Li fought out. Li landed a series of kicks to Purrazzo’s midsection knocking her down. Li hit a leg drop and an elbow drop for a two count. Purrazzo recovered and sent Li into the corner. She charged, but Li nailed a kick to the face, followed by a kick from the top rope into a cover for two. Purrazzo took Li down with an arm drag, did a backflip, and kicked Li in the face before going for a cover for two.

-Purrazzo went for a fujiwara armbar but it was reversed by Li. Purrazzo regained the upper hand and with a series of strikes knocked Li down and covered for two. They exchange kicks and strikes, before Purrazzo nailed another side Russian leg sweep into the Fujiwara armbar. Li rolled Purrazzo over into a cover, and Purrazzo had to break the hold to kick out. Purrazzo made her way to her feet first, kicked Li and gave her a single arm DDT for a two count. She locked in another armbar submission on Li, and Li made her way to her feet to break the hold. Li landed a dropkick, as the two lay on the mat in exhaustion. They struggle to their feet, and trade chops. They trade a series of forearms to the face, before Li landed a roundhouse kick on Purrazzo sending her to the mat. Li made a cover for two.

-Li went for a running kick to Purrazzo in the corner, but was countered into the Fujiwara armbar. Li made a valiant effort to escape, but ultimately tapped out.

WINNER: Deonna Purrazzo.

Analysis: An impressive win for Purrazzo here. While she didn’t dominate the offense, she did seem to get a bit more in than her competitor. They both looked strong, but in the end Purrazzo was stronger. Solid match overall. Great pacing, and they kept the crowd engaged throughout.

(3) Teagan Nox vs. Nicole Matthews

-The hype package for the 3rdmatch of the night kicked off with Matthews saying that she doesn’t care if she hurts her opponent. She said she’s aggressive, and not afraid to take a short cut to win. Nox said that she does things women don’t do, and she likes to hit people hard but also likes to be a high flier. She said she’s coming harder than ever and that Matthews will need sunglasses, because the shiniest wizard is a bit blinding.

-Matthews made her way to the ring, met with a lukewarm chorus of boos from the crowd. Split screen highlights of her first-round win played as the announcers hyped how dangerous she really is. Nox entered next to a great reaction from the crowd. Energetically, she made her way to the ring as Cole said she’s his pick to win. Highlights of her Shiniest Wizard played on split screen.

-They shook hands in the ring, as the ref called for the bell. The announcers point out Nox’s knee brace, and played up the ACL injury she received last year. Nox seemed to be adjusting her knee brace as Matthews moved to attack with a clubbing blow to her back. The crowd booed, but those boos turned to cheers as Nox fought back and knocked Matthews out of the ring.

-Nox went for a suicide dive on Matthews ringside, but was met with a forearm to the face sending her to the mat. Matthews threw her back in the ring, and wrapped her up between the top and second rope to deliver kicks to the midsection. She covered Nox for two. Matthews kept the offensive with chops in two corners, followed by a dropkick to the Nox leaning on the turnbuckles. She made another cover, but Nox kicked out. Matthews kicked Nox in the spine twice, but Nox “hulked up”, stood up and delivered a snap mare followed by spine kicks of her own. Matthews recovered, delivered a receipt snap mare, and yet another spine kick.

-Matthews delivered elbows to the chest of Nox, into a submission hold with her knee in the spine of Nox. Nox fought out, only to be clotheslined by Matthews. Matthews landed a Northern Lights, bridging for two. Nox regained the upper hand, screamed, and went for a dropkick but was caught by Matthews. Matthews looked for a Liontamer, but Nox was able to roll her up with a school boy for two. Matthews recovered by sitting in the corner, and was met with a running senton by Nox. Nox’s knee gave out as she attempted to stand. She still made her way to her feet before Matthews and delivered the Shining Wizard, connecting with the braced knee, for the win.

WINNER: Teagan Nox

Analysis: The underdog scored the win here! With how menacing Matthews looked and how stiff her offense looked, Matthews looked like she may come out victorious. On the shorter side, but the match had a nice flow to it, and was fast paced and hard hitting. Even in her defeat, Matthews came out of the match looking strong.

(4) Mia Yim vs. Kaitlyn

Kaitlyn kicked off the last hype package of the night by saying this isn’t her first rodeo, and that she’s a former champion. She says she’s now more confident and knows who she is this time around. Mia Yim said she respects Kaitlyn, but that she’s never wrestled anyone like her. Kaitlyn has never experienced the Blasian Baddie.

-Mia Yim made her way to the ring first, as Full Sail exploded in cheers. Cole hyped her win in the first round while those highlights played on split screen. Kaitlyn emerged from the back next, to a decent pop from the crowd. She marched to the ring with confidence, as the announcers played up her first-round win, with the highlights on split screen – notably, the spot where her hand was slammed into the ring post.

-Kaitlyn extended her hand for the handshake, and Mia Yim slowly grasped her hand before snatching it away. They backed into their corners as the bell rang. The two tied up in the center of the ring, with Yim backing Kaitlyn to the ropes. Dueling chants for the two competitors filled the arena, as Yim chopped Kaitlyn, exacerbating the hand injury she sustained in her first-round match.

-Kaitlyn gingerly ran the ropes, and delivered a low dropkick to the leg of Yim. She landed a sliding clothesline, followed by two leg drops into a cover for two. Yim recovered in the corner, to be met by a cannonball by Kaitlyn who made another cover for two.

-Kaitlyn locked in a body scissors, and then rolled Yim over pinning her shoulders to the mat. The ref made a two count, but Yim kicked out. Still synching in the body scissors, Kaitlyn tried two more times to make a pin attempt, with Yim kicking out both times. Yim finally escaped the hold, and Kaitlyn swept the legs out from under Yim who rolled out of the ring. Kaitlyn went for a baseball slide, but was tripped by Yim. Yim got back into the ring, and repeatedly kicked the hamstring of Kaitlyn before delivering a DDT to the leg, and making a cover for two.

-Yim locked in a modified figure-four leg log on Kaitlyn, who writhed in pain. She eventually broke the hold, and mounted Kaitlyn to deliver a series of strikes to her face. She followed that up with a giant slap to the face. Yim asked Kaitlyn if she was “All done?”, to which Kaitlyn shrieked back, “NO!”. Yim went for another punch to the face, when Kaitlyn moved out of the way, sending Yim’s injured hand right into the mat.

-Kaitlyn brought back the Diva’s era here by very sloppily returning those mounted strikes to Yim. She then grabbed the injured hand of Yim, and bent her wrist backwards. Yim screamed out in pain while the announcers sold the heinous submission by Kaitlyn. Realizing she wasn’t about to tap, Kaitlyn slammed Yim’s hand to the mat and broke the hold.

-Kaitlyn picked Yim up, possibly looking for a Fall Away Slam, but couldn’t quite get her up. Yim fell on top of her, and covered for two. Kim kicked her in the face, and went for another cover for two. Yim bounced off the ropes to attack a prone Kaitlyn, but Kaitlyn bounced up and delivered a powerful shoulder tackle to Yim. The two lay on the mat, struggling to their feet. Kaitlyn nailed a series of strikes, followed by an elbow to the face. She scoops slammed Yim twice, and Yim got to her feet quickly. She pleaded with Kaitlyn to end the attack, catching Kaitlyn off guard. Yim then attacked Kaitlyn, who countered by picking her up for what looked like a third scoop slam, but she swung Yim around into a well-executed sidewalk slam for a two and a half.

-Yim crawled to the corner and used the ropes to get to her feet. Kaitlyn charged, but Yim moved, sending her into the turnbuckle. Yim countered with a falling boot to the face, the “Soul Food”, for a two count. The crowd chanted for Mia Yim, as she went for a German. Kaitlyn blocked, bounced of the ropes, and landed a brutal looking spear. She made the cover, Yim kicked at two with the crowd gasping in disbelief.

-Kaitlyn attacked the injured hand of Yim, but Yim blocked it, and countered with a kneebar submission. Kaitlyn shrieked in pain trying to reach the bottom ropes, but ultimately tapped out, securing the win for Mia Yim.

WINNER: Mia Yim

Analysis: Kaitlyn looked a bit clunky during a few spots early in the match, but pulled it together towards the end. She came off looking like a powerhouse, and in my opinion anyway, kind of dusted off some of that “Diva’s Era” stigma. Mia Yim has all the makings of a star. She is incredibly solid in the ring, sold Kaitlyn’s offense well, and has that natural charisma that many wrestlers wish to have. I really appreciated the throwback to Yim’s first round match with the hand injury, and how it played a role in this bout.

Final Thoughts: A very entertaining and action-packed 2ndround of the quarter finals, although I think last week’s episode was maybe a half notch above this one. Some of the women entered the Full Sail arena to lukewarm reactions, but all of them had the crowd hooked once the action began. I was solidly impressed by Purrazzo, who may be a bit underrated in the wrestling world. Shirai looked flawless, and looks like she should have a fantastic run with the company if all goes well. Overall, another solid episode of the MYC. I’ve yet to be disappointed thus far, and am looking forward to the semi-finals!


NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S REPORT: 10/3 MAE YOUNG CLASSIC 2018 – EP. 5: Toni Storm vs. Hiroyo Matsumoto, Lacey Lane vs. Taynara Conti, Kacy Catanzaro vs. Rhea Ripley, Mercedes Martinez vs Meiko Satomura

 

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