Paige VanZant Dominates Felice Herrig At UFC On FOX 15In what was clearly her most impressive performance to date, “12 Gauge” Paige VanZant earned a lopsided Unanimous Decision win tonight at UFC on FOX 15: “Machida vs Rockhold” in Newark, New Jersey. The Reebok-sponsored 21-year-old strawweight dominated Felice “Lil’ Bulldog” Herrig.

Many questioned the hype surrounding VanZant following her successful UFC debut in November, but she proved critics wrong again by punishing Herrig with ground and pound throughout tonight’s bout. Herrig survived until the final bell, but she was left battered and bloodied by VanZant’s assault.


VanZant (5-1-0) countered early punches from Herrig (10-6-0) by throwing her more experienced foe to the mat, but Herrig quickly took her back and threatened with a rear-naked choke. VanZant defended well and escaped from an armbar soon after. The fighters battled for position in a clinch and VanZant threw Herrig to the canvas once more. This time, she avoided Herrig’s submissions by raining down punches and elbows from the top in half-guard. The round ended with VanZant attempting a heel hook.

While the first round was a close one, VanZant was in complete control of the remainder of the fight. She initiated scrambles on the ground in round two and blasted Herrig with big punches from the top. Herrig tried in vain to secure an armbar, but VanZant stood up and pulled her arm free. She landed a barrage of punches in the final seconds that caused Herrig’s face to swell up.

Already ahead on the scorecards, VanZant was even more dominant in round three. She took Herrig down in the opening minute and worked for a rear-naked choke of her own. When that failed, VanZant resumed peppering Herrig with punches. She stood over a bloodied Herrig and teed off with hard shots that had referee Vitor Ribeiro’s attention. In the final 30 seconds of the fight, VanZant landed more big punches from top position in Herrig’s guard.

Two judges saw the final round 10-8 for VanZant and turned in identical scores of 30-26 in her favour. A third had it 30-27 for the talented young rising star, who is now 2-0 inside the Octagon. VanZant remains young in her MMA career, but tonight’s victory over an experienced opponent proved again that she is more than just hype.

Winner: Paige VanZant by Unanimous Decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-27) after three rounds. She improves to 5-1-0.



(Photo Credit: UFC)