Friday, August 14, 2009

Memorable Moments in Northeast Female MMA History

In honor of Saturday's highly-anticipated Gina Carano/Cris "Cyborg" Santos epic - the biggest fight in female MMA history - MMA Journalist has compiled this handy-dandy collection of the biggest moments in Northeast female MMA. Curiously, the Northeast has at times been a comparative hotbed for fighting femmes, with top talent like Amanda Buckner, Laura D'Auguste, Tara LaRosa and Roxanne Modaferri (before she moved to Japan) calling this part of the world home. Anyway, the list:
  • Laura D'Auguste vs. Shannon Logan, Reality Fighting 2, 11/02/02 - The first female MMA fight in the Northeast saw a Tiger Schulmann Karate rep in D'Auguste take on a Team Renzo blue belt in Logan, and it was like watching Chute Boxer Pele Landi Jons against Jorge Patino in Brazil circa 1996 (i.e., D'Auguste beat on Logan mercilessly). The crowd inside the Wildwood Convention Center went absolutely nuts - the first inclination that skilled women were viable competitors and just as exciting as men.
  • Laura D'Auguste vs. Del Greer, Reality Fighting 3, 2/8/03 - The audience was much bigger for this one, and when D'Auguste managed to defeat the larger Greer despite a weight disadvantage, the whole place erupted. This was the first time a female bout was the main event, and no one left the Bayonne High School gymnasium disappointed.
  • Shelby Walker vs. Angela Wilson, Ring of Fury 3, 5/3/03 - A Boston nightclub played host to Ring of Fury 3, and when the referee said "go!" Wilson charged right into Walker's fist. Walker got off another punch and that was all she wrote. At five seconds, it remains the fastest KO in women's MMA history.
  • Laura D'Auguste vs. Roxanne Modafferi, Ring of Combat 8, 3/19/05 - When Jennifer Howe was considered the best female fighter in the world, Modafferi kicked her ass, then kicked her ass again in the rematch. And though a loss on a Smackgirl card in Japan marred her record, "Roxy" was considered the new chick to beat at the time. So in the dank depths of the Asbury Park Convention Hall that's just what D'Auguste did. After ROC 8, D'Auguste went on to win a Smackgirl tournament in Japan - a win which had nearly everyone in the industry pegging her as the top female fighter in the sport.
  • Tara LaRosa vs. Roxanne Modafferi, MFC: "Boardwalk Blitz", 3/4/06 - Matchmaker Miguel Iturrate knew full well the appeal of women fighting, so he wasted little time in putting such bouts on his Mixed Fighting Championship cards. At this one, LaRosa - considered to be top contender - took on Modaferri in a grueling three-rounder.
  • Amanda Buckner vs. Shayna Baszler, MFC: "USA vs. Russia", 6/3/06 - Another Miguel Iturrate special. When Buckner and Baszler threw down at Boardwalk Hall, they really threw down, and pics of the donnybrook made the cover of the New York Times the next day.
  • Tara LaRosa vs. Kelly Kobold, BodogFIGHT: "Alvarez vs. Lee", 7/14/07 - BodogFIGHT wanted to crown a 135-pound female champ, and after pitting some of the best against each other for their weekly TV show, it was clear LaRosa was one half of the equation. Unfortunately, D'Auguste (now a full-fledged jiu-jitsu student) injured her ankle in training, so undefeated Midwesterner Kobold stepped in. LaRosa won via fourth-round armbar, and since then she's been the queen of the 135 pounders. D'Auguste, meanwhile, got married and retired from fighting.
  • Tara LaRosa vs. Alexis Davis and Sally Krumdiak, Extreme Challenge's "War at the Shore" and "Mayhem at the Marina", 1/23/09 and 3/28/09 - While Carano was making waves on national TV, LaRosa returned to action to prove yet again that she's the best by taking on all comers and dominating. She remains one of the best and most accomplished unsung heroes in MMA.

No comments: