2004 Olympic silver medallist Sara McMann put her wrestling skills to good use this evening in the co-main event of ProElite 3: “Grove vs Minowa” in Honolulu, Hawaii. McMann earned the biggest win of her MMA career and kept her perfect record intact by defeating Hitomi “Girlfight Monster” Akano.
McMann threw Akano to the mat countless times in their three-round bout and showcased a considerable strength advantage over her Japanese foe by controlling the fight wherever it went. Akano was active from the bottom, but it was not enough and McMann earned a dominant Unanimous Decision.
McMann (5-0-0) took Akano (18-9-0) down very early in the fight and avoided a guillotine choke before getting to work with strikes from the top. Akano managed to scramble back to full guard, but McMann stayed busy with short punches until referee Yuji Shimada called for a break. Mere seconds elapsed before McMann slammed Akano down again. She threatened with both a rear-naked choke and an arm-triangle choke late in the round.
It was more of the same in the second stanza, as McMann once again bullied her opponent with violent slam takedowns and punches from top position. When the fighters were stood up, McMann displayed improved striking skills and connected with a right hook and a grazing head kick before the fight returned to the mat. Akano worked diligently for a Kimura, but had no luck. The fight returned to the feet and McMann scored another takedown. She landed punches from the top, but a crafty Akano trapped her in a triangle choke before the bell sounded.
Seemingly up two rounds to zero, McMann did not let up at all as the fight entered round three. She took Akano back down and peppered her with punches while trying to pass to side control. When Akano attempted a triangle choke, McMann powered out and stood. She landed a nice flurry and slammed Akano back down, then finished the round strong with yet another takedown.
The judges were united in their verdict and all awarded the bout to McMann, who will now take a big step up the bantamweight ranks.
Winner: Sara McMann by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27) after three rounds. She improves to 5-0-0.
(Photo Credit: Sherdog.com)