Any questions about how much of a draw & appeal this Japanese All-Women’s Joshi Promotion would bring was erased with the big crowd that came to both shows. Some of our favorite regional female wrestlers were in action, along with some of the other top ladies in the indies, and—of course—some of the top names among the promotion’s Japanese Joshi ladies. (Note: Some of the details from the Sunday matches may be repeats of Mike Draven’s recap.)
10/16/15 results from the “EWF Arena”—the Knights of Columbus Hall in Covina
1 – Act Yasukawa, Kyoko Kimura, & Kris Wolf d. Datura, Brittany Wonder, & Shayna Baszler
Crazy opener that saw Yasukawa “spit some of her sake” onto her opponents, & both Shayna & Kyoko display some great strong-style action. Datura gave the Japanese ladies a taste of Lucha Libre, while Brittany really made Kyoko “kiss her big butt”. Kyoko, though, would have the last say, putting “The Ultra Girl” in a Sleeper Hold for the tapout submission.
2 – Mayu Iwatani p. Nicole Savoy
Very even match between these two. Mayu had to overcome several submission attempts from Savoy, winning a battle to execute a Full Nelson Suplex, into a bridging cover for the pin.
3 – “The Rate Tank” Kellie Skater & Hiroyo Matsumoto d. Kairi Hojo & Kahmora (who subbed for Chelsea)
Maybe it’s just me, but perhaps Kahmora’s recent IWL matches against men helped her hold her own against one of the finest Aussie wrestlers (Kellie) today, & the relatively big Hiroyo. Kellie & Hiroyo looked great in the ring, with Kellie herself showing why she’s a major feature in the major American indies, especially SHIMMER. Kairi had a great showing, too, showing some resiliency from taking all kinds of punishment. In the end, Kellie nailed a Superkick on Kahmora, which Hiroyo rolled into what may’ve been either a DVD, an Olympic Slam, or a Dragon Suplex, for the pin.
Hudson Envy & Thunder Rosa hit the ring next, and it was no surprise—at least among those who follow the So Cal scene–that both women had quite the beef with Cheerleader Melissa. Of course, Hudson was still enraged over the scar left on her face from her last AWS match with Melissa, and Thunder Rosa was hungry for the Gold Rush Pro “Lady of Luck” title. While Melissa wasn’t wrestling on this particular night, she found someone that could partner with Santana Garrett….Melina!
SM – Melina & Santana Garrett d. Hudson Envy & Thunder Rosa
One crazy tag team match, and it couldn’t have been easy for Hudson & Rosa to go against a former 3-time WWE Women’s/Divas Champion & the current NWA World Women’s Champion / Shine Women’s Champion. The two women did held their own for quite a long time, which should only make their stock rise. Melina still showed she still had at least a significant amount of skill from her WWE days, which could suit her well in the upcoming LU tapings. When the match was all said & done, Santana p. Rosa w/ the “Eat Defeat”, which she then rolled into her signature “Shining Star Press”.
M – Io Shirai successfully defended the “Wonder of Stardom” (Women’s Champion) title over Mia Yim
A fantastic main event that really the crowd going. Both women displayed some sweet moves, & this was the only match that had an aerial highspot. Both women did a great Avalanche German Suplex, but Io was able to roll hers into a Spike Tombstone hold that was turned into a Facebreaker, then into a Tope Moonsault for the pin.
10/18/15 Results from the Esther Snyder Community Center in Baldwin Park
1 – Act Yasukawa, Kyoko Kimura, & Thunder Rosa d. Nicole Savoy, Brittany Wonder, & Datura
Thunder Rosa might just fit in well with Yasukawa & Kyoko after this great opener that featured a mix of comedy spots & serious wrestling. Her stomp to the back of Datura’s head was what led to Kyoko’s Tope Senton Bomb, followed by Yasukawa’s Swanton Bomb for the pin.
2 – Santana Garrett p. Kris Wolf
Kris gave a strong showing against this holder of 4 different Women’s titles, but she just couldn’t outpower her. Santana nailed her with a Tornado DDT from the apron, and over the middle ropes; then followed it with her Shining Star Press for the pin.
3 – Cheerleader Melissa successfully defended the Gold Rush Pro “Lady of Luck” title over Shayna Baszler
This was the most technical match of the weekend’s cards, especially since Shayna wanted to make “The Future Legend” submit. The only problem was, it was Melissa who put Shayna into a Reverse Cloverleaf submission, putting her left foot on the side of her head to incapacitate her for the win.
SM – Melina & Kairi Hojo d. Mia Yim & Hudson Envy
If there ever was a special honor that the fans can give to one of the ladies, it would be Kairi for being the Joshi wrestler with the biggest heart & soul. She took a ton of punishment from the homegrown talent (Hudson) & one of the top ladies in the indies today (Mia). If there was any rust left from Melina’s match last Friday, she didn’t show it. Her Cutter on Mia, onto Hudson, led to the one thing that Kairi couldn’t do in Covina because of the lack of ceiling space. She nailed Hudson with the Impactful Flying Elbow for the pin.
M – Io Shirai & Mayu Iwatani successfully defended the “Goddesses of Stardom” Tag Team titles over Kellie Skater & Hiroyo Matsumoto
Very even match, and this was where the fans really got their money’s worth. Aside from the mix of heavy impacts and holds, Hiroyo gave a pair of aerial spots. First, she threw Mayu over the top rope, and onto Io, then she lifted her tag team partner, Kellie, up into a Fireman’s Carry, then threw her over the top rope, and onto their opponents, with some of the other wrestlers providing an “extra cushion” for the tumble. After Io & Mayu were able to take Hiroyo out of the fight, they nailed that “Indy Taker” move on Kellie, which was as reminiscent of the Meltzer Driver, except Mayu dropped down from the top rope, instead of springboarding off the ropes. Io then hit her Tope Moonsault for the pin.
The fans’ energy on both nights, complete with a “Please come back!” chant at the end of the Sunday Night show only capped the fantastic impression that the Japanese Joshi promotion leaves on the So Cal scene. Given the great showing by the regional talents, it would be no surprise that other regionally-based ladies get the opportunity to perform for Stardom in Japan. Datura & Santana Garrett are among those scheduled to be in Japan for Stardom next weekend. As for Hudson Envy, her multiple tours with Stardom has definitely made her a more formidable wrestler, especially for anyone that challenges her for the AWS Women’s title. Thunder Rosa also gave a great showing, and I wouldn’t be surprised if she earns a few Japan trips of her own somewhere down the road. Among the Japanese ladies that flew in for this tour, there are four women that I would love to see come back for AWS, EWF, or any other regional promotion: Io Shirai, Mayu Iwatani, Kairi Hojo, & Hiroyo Mastumoto. Not only can these ladies perform in the ring, they can also speak enough English fluently. Finally, hats off to the EWF staff & crew for working with Stardom, to help them produce a pair of great cards. You can only imagine the amount of hard work that Jesse Hernandez, Frank Mott, and the rest of the crew put in to make this happen.
Friday – Io / Mia, + Melina & Santana v. Hudson & Rosa
Sunday – Io & Mayu v. Kellie & Hiroyo, + Melina & Kairi v. Mia & Hudson
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