Fast accurate combinations and well-timed counter strikes helped Grasso beat Araujo to the punch round after round as she continued to rack up points on the scorecards. Grasso was consistent with her output while using a volume striking attack to just pepper away at Araujo until the fight was over.
Following the final horn, the judges scored the fight 50-45, 49-46 and 49-46 with Grasso getting the nod by unanimous decision in her first ever headlining opportunity.
“Of course I did enough to win this time,” Grasso said afterwards. “I knew she was going to try to take me to the ground but I trained hard. I trained really, really hard for this. I know that she’s a tough warrior. I admire her, too.”
The flyweights were both resigned to exchange strikes throughout the majority of the first round with Grasso establishing a nasty jab that continuously popped Araujo in the mush. Grasso was effective using her jab to then set up a well-timed hook behind it, which eventually forced Araujo to stop trading punches and look for the takedown instead.
Grasso was giving Araujo a lot of headache with her fast hands and lightning quick combinations that snapped off in succession before the Brazilian could respond. That led to Araujo finally countering with a takedown that saw her quickly advance her position but Grasso was able to explode off the ground to get back to her feet.
Just before the second round ended, Grasso snapped off a nasty left-right combination with her fists landing with a thud on Araujo’s jaw. Grasso continued with that same strategy with Araujo trying to find an answer while struggling under the weight of a volume striking attack.
Grasso was consistently landing first in the exchanges but Araujo was still happy to stay in the pocket with a power advantage in her counter punches. While Araujo was able to pop Grasso with a few hard shots, the Brazilian was still eating far more strikes than she was delivering as she dealt with an incredibly active opponent with better technical boxing.
With five minutes remaining, Araujo was wary to overcommit because it seemed like every time she stepped forward, Grasso was firing back with a quick two-punch combination. When Araujo finally did get a little more aggressive, Grasso answered by leaning on her back foot and unloading a powerful right hook that landed flush.
There was no doubt when the fight was over that Grasso had done more than enough to earn the victory as she continues to make a slow and steady climb up the flyweight ranks.
With the win, Grasso moves to 4-0 at 125 pounds and now she will surely keep a close eye on the flyweight fight between Katlyn Chookagian and Manon Fiorot at UFC 280 with one of them possibly serving as the next challenge to reigning champion Valentina Shevchenko