UFC

Raquel Pennington dominates former housemate Roxanne Modafferi

Raquel Pennington punches Roxanne Modafferi
Raquel Pennington defeated Roxanne Modafferi at the TUF 18 Finale.
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Damon Martin

Damon Martin is a veteran mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the sport since 2004. His work has been published in CNN, Bleacher Report, MMAWeekly.com, Yahoo! Sports, UFC.com and SportsIllustrated.com. He also co-hosts The Great Debate Radio MMA podcast, and has appeared on ESPN Radio and SportsNet Radio. Follow him on Twitter.

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Raquel Pennington wasn't able to pull the trigger to make it to the final fight on The Ultimate Fighter, but she didn't have that trouble against former housemate Roxanne Modafferi on Saturday night in Las Vegas.

With a superior boxing game that included some huge power shots landed in each round, Pennington was the more dominant fighter over the course of all 15 minutes against Modafferi.

In the early going, Modafferi tried to set the pace with her activity, constantly moving forward and pressing Pennington with her punches and kicks. As the first round progressed, however, Pennington started to counter and landed some power shots the last of which rattled Modafferi just before the horn sounded to signify the end of the five minute session.

Pennington's stand up attack forced Modafferi to look for the ground instead, but when her takedown didn't land she ended up on the bottom looking for submissions. Despite one armbar attempt, Modafferi couldn't find anything to put her opponent in danger, but Pennington firing back from the top position slammed down like a hammer time and time again. Pennington eventually got the fight stood up again and with her timing spot on at this stage in the fight started to pop Modafferi with more and more of her shots.

The third round saw more of the same as Pennington's striking forced Modafferi to try and drag the action to the mat, but again she could only end up pulling guard and working from the bottom. Pennington stayed patient on top and absolutely unloaded the bulk of her punishing shots to Modafferi's body. The fighters worked back to the feet, but it was there that Pennington turned the tables on Modafferi, grabbing a guillotine choke and lifting her opponent into the air. Modafferi finally crashed back to the mat with Pennington mounted on top with the guillotine still in tact.

With only 10 seconds remaining, Modefferi's face contorted with a grimace of sheer determination to survive, but it was clear that when the fight was over that Pennington had done enough to win.

The judges scored the fight 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 — all in favor of Pennington, who gets her first UFC win.

Pennington (4-3) was favored to make it to the finals before she came up short against Jessica Rakoczy during The Ultimate Fighter, but she showed up in a big way against her former Team Tate training partner on Saturday night. Modafferi (15-11) suffered her sixth loss in a row with the defeat to Pennington, and that could mark her only fight in the UFC after she competed for more than 10 years to get there.

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