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TUF 18 Finale: Raquel Pennington defeats Roxanne Modaferri

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

It was a feel-good moment on Saturday night when veteran Roxanne Modaferri made her UFC debut after a full decade as a mixed martial artist. The fighter known as "The Happy Warrior" is one of the sport's most well-liked personalities.

But it was Modaferri's opponent, Raquel Pennington, who left the Octagon at the Mandalay Bay Events center with a victory.

Pennington was simply too fast and landed too often for Modaferri to handled. Pennington won the battle of Team Tate fighters via unanimous decision, winning on scores of 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28.

More Coverage: TUF 18 Finale Results | UFC news
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The first round got off to a tentative start, with Modaferri darting in and out and throwing occasional strikes. Pennington turned things up over the final minute, though, and landed several big shots.

In round two, Pennington kept the heat on Modaferri and landed a huge right hand. As the fight hit the ground the crafty Modaferri began working for submissions on the ground. When the fight got back to the feet late, Pennington punished Modaferri with more right hands.

Round three was similar to round two, except in this case, Pennington sealed the final round with with a tight guillotine choke. Modaferri managed to hang on until the final horn.

Pennington improved to 4-3, snapping a two-fight losing streak. Modaferri dropped to 15-11 with her fifth straight loss.

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