TUF 18 Episode 11 Recap: Julianna Peña Submits Sarah MorasIn the first female semi-final fight, Julianna “The Venezuelan Vixen” Peña avenged a loss and scored the biggest victory of her career during Episode 11 of The Ultimate Fighter 18: “Team Rousey vs Team Tate” tonight. Peña submitted Sarah “Cheesecake” Moras with a second-round guillotine choke.

Tonight’s rematch between the Team Tate allies was more competitive than the pair’s first bout in April 2012, which Moras won after breaking Peña’s arm with an armbar. Peña held top position for most of the pivotal rematch and she bloodied Moras with elbows before submitting her with the choke.

Peña countered early leg kicks from Moras with a combination and a nice right cross in the first round. She reversed a takedown attempt and wound up on top, but Moras was very active from her back and she looked to set up a pair of triangle chokes. Peña escaped from the submission attempts, but Moras landed elbows from the bottom. Peña passed to half-guard and dropped three hard elbows on Moras’s face. Late in the round, Peña moved to side control and then to a top-side crucifix while peppering Moras with more elbows along the way.

In the opening seconds of round two, Moras landed more leg kicks and Peña responded with another hard flurry of punches. She clinched against the cage and eventually tripped Moras to the mat. From there, Peña transitioned to side control and fought off Moras’s inverted triangle choke attempts. Peña scored with a series of elbows that badly bloodied Moras’s nose. When Moras got to her knees and tried to stand up, Peña pulled half-guard with a tight guillotine choke and Moras was forced to submit at the 3:31 mark of round two.

Coach Miesha “Cupcake” Tate, in an effort to remain fair, opted not to corner either fighter during the fight tonight. Peña appeared to be lacking in self-confidence prior to the bout, but she put on another excellent performance in victory and now moves on to the women’s final on November 30th.

Peña will next face the winner of the second women’s semi-final between Team Tate’s Raquel “Rocky” Pennington and Team Rousey’s Jessica “The Ragin'” Rakoczy, which airs in two weeks’ time. The winner of the TUF 18 women’s final earns a six-figure UFC contract.



(Photo Credit: UFC)