Julia Budd captured Bellator’s inaugural Women’s Featherweight Championship with a dominate performance over veteran Marloes Coenen.
Round one was the only close round the fight. Coenen fought well on her back, in full guard. Budd spent most of round one on top, but defending against submissions. However, the rest of the fight was all Budd.
Budd continually took Coenen down, passed her guard, advance positions and sprinkle in a little ground and pound. By the middle of round two, Coenen could not get anything going and was no longer effective on her back.
By round four Coenen appeared gassed and demoralized. Budd secured a full mount on her gassed opponent and repeatedly lashed effective strikes down on the Dutch mixed martial artist. Referee Big John McCarthy called a halt to the fight, via strikes, at 2:42 into round four.
A jubilant Julia Budd seemed euphoric when presented the coveted championship belt. “It’s been a long road” Budd said as she admired her new hardware.
If winning the first female title in Bellator was not satisfying enough for Budd, she explained to the raucous Oklahoma crowd that this fight was a bit of a grudge match. “I really wanted to finish her” explained Budd. “Don’t ever call me mentally weak”, was her message to Coenen.
Coenen had no energy to get into a war of words with Budd, and was gracious in defeat. Marloes Coenen also announced her retirement after the fight. Coenen also gave a special thanks to Bellator Ceo Scott Corker; citing that Corker was the first person to realize the value of female mixed martial arts.
Bellator MMA has had a nice run of entertaining fights since 2016. Female championship fights promise to add more spice to the successful organization, as well as Friday nights for MMA fanatics.
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