UFC St. Petersburg will keep the main card rolling with a women’s flyweight bout between Antonina Shevchenko and Roxanne Modafferi.
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Antonina, 30, is the older sister to UFC women’s bantamweight champion, Valentina. “The Panther” (7-0) will make her second walk to the Octagon in Russia. She is the highest betting favorite on the night with -350 [Bovada]. As for Modafferi (22-15). “The Happy Warrior” will make the walk to the Octagon for the fifth time in her UFC career. She will look to get her hand raised for just the second time against a Shevchenko sister.
The women touch gloves. Modafferi wants to get this fight to the canvas, Shevchenko wants to keep it standing. Modafferi pumps her jab early in round round one. Shevchenko seems to be much more measured here. She throws a body kick and lands a counter one-two on Modafferi. She throws a front kick that misses the mark. Modafferi does land a right hand but misses a follow up left. Shevchenko lands a hard body kick. Both women exchange in the pocket, Shevchenko angles off. Modafferi pressures forward and lands a couple of right hands. She presses and eats a knee. Modafferi looks for a takedown as she grinds Shevchenko into the cage. Shevchenko defends with a kimora but Modafferi steps over and advances her position. She uses a wizzer to throw Shevchenko. She quickly mounts Shevchenko and lands. The round ends.
Modafferi presses to start, Shevchenko lands a sidekick. She then lands a right hand. Modafferi eats it and moves in, Shevchenko lands a one-two. She opens up on Modafferi with punches. Modafferi closes the distance and presses Shevchenko up against the cage again. Shevchenko is defending much better this time, however. The fight slows as the women grapple for a better position. Modafferi lands a trip-takedown. She ends up in side control with her legs trying up Shevchenko’s. Modafferi lands some punches and moves into a more advantageous position. However, Shevchenko looks for an up kick, Modafferi passes but eats some hammer fists from Shevchenko. Less than one minute to go in the round. Modafferi is masterful on the ground as she moves from position to position and landing strikes. The round ends.
Shevchenko presses to start the final round. She lands a barrage of punches. Modafferi answers. Shevchenko is lighting up Modafferi here. Modafferi scores a takedown and moves to back mount. Shevchenko reveres and lands some punches. Modafferi sweeps Shevchenko and blasts some elbows. She gains mount and blasts more elbows. Here ground control is fantastic. Shevchenko hits a sweep of her own. She gets back to her feet and lands a few hard knees. Modafferi is holding on to Shevchenko, her hands are clasped behind her. Shevchenko blasts another knee. Modafferi breaks her grip but still has control. She presses but eats another knee. She pushes through and scores a takedown. The horn sounds.
Roxanne Modafferi defeats Antonina Shevchenko via split decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)