Fusion Fight League’s Ladies Fight Night to feature handful of high-profile MMA stars
UFC pro Modafferi squares off against Brazillian challenger Souza in main event
Fusion Fight League welcomes to Billings next month some of the most exciting female MMA fighters in the country in what looks to be a scintillating set of fights, no fooling.
Fusion presents Ladies Fight Night, headlined by the main event of veteran 125-pound UFC and Invicta pro Roxanne “The Happy Warrior” Modafferi going up against the promising Brazilian, Priscila Souza. The event kicks off with the undercard starting at 7:30 p.m. on April 1 at the MetraPark Arena.
In an exclusive interview with Big Sky State Buzz, Modafferi said she thinks her match against Souza will be an epic battle.
“I think (Souza) will come out very aggressively and I’m looking forward to using a variety of techniques that I have learned to triumph against her,” she said. “My style is tricky and unpredictable, I think she will be confused when she fights me, but I love that she also loves Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.”
Modafferi, an MMA fighter since 2003, said while she will always prefer to be a grappler, she’s evolved her game with the help of her trainer. She knows she can rely on her experience no matter if she’s on her feet or fighting for leverage on the ground.
“Coach John Wood forged my previously crappy striking into a sharp weapon that I’m not afraid to use,” she said. “I’m an opportunistic fighter — I go in with a loose game-plan and adapt to what’s working and what I get from the opponent.”
Having won four of her last six matches, Modafferi has gone onto establish herself as an emerging talent among the top female MMA fighters in the country. She said in her opinion, the way great fighters separate themselves from decent ones is the amount they’re willing to sacrifice to succeed in the ring.
“(They) make sacrifices to train, no matter if they have a fight set or not. When it comes to money, relationships, not going places, and doing stuff, etc., they have to have strong willpower,” she said. “Every fighter must have these things, of course, but the greats make it work especially well. Having a little luck helps too!”
Modafferi will have a strong challenge in Souza, who hasn’t lost a fight since Aug. 2015 and is surely hungry to prove she can test the more-experienced and decorated fighter. Souza, at 12-7, has yet to go up against someone with the kind of experience Modafferi has, but insiders say she’s more-than capable of winning.
In addition to the main event, there will be at least five Montana fighters involved in the action. The co-main event will see Gillian Noll taking on Jessica Borga for the 135-pound amateur No. 1 contender title. Serena DeJesus, a Philadelphia-based fighter with Asperger’s syndrome, also will be battling for an amateur title against Courtney King of Colorado, the current Fusion 135-pound champ.
Terrill Bracken, owner of Fusion Fight League, said he’s proud of the fact that up and down the card there shouldn’t be a bad matchup. He said that’s something they’ve worked hard to ensure.
“I’m really excited because we have some incredible fights lined up. Of course there will be a few up-and-comers, but this card will also feature nationally ranked fighters literally from coast to coast,” he said. “…and with the number two ranked 125-pound female fighter in the world with an Invicta and UFC pedigree (Modafferi) facing off against a very tough opponent from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil (Souza) our main event fight … is the kind of main event ANY organization would be lucky to host.”
Bracken said he’s also amped at a few other fights that could end up being among the best of the night, as well.
“I am really looking forward to Borga vs. Noll as the co-main event but I am also very excites to see Jen Johnston vs. Kelly Clayton, too,” he said.
Johnston, a Montana native, looks to build off her TKO victory in January when she takes on Clayton, a strong fighter from Yakima, Wash.
Another exciting amateur match, just recently added to the card is Anna Dempster of Portland taking on Claire Guthrie of Indiana.
Tickets to the event are still available. For more information on this event, along with the upcoming April 8 event in Great Falls featuring Leo Bercier’s final match, check out Fusion Fight League on Facebook and keep checking back here for more coverage.