Murphy uses supreme striking skills to earn unanimous decision
A clean and technical fighter, Lauren Murphy of Eagle River outboxed her opponent with supreme striking skills to win by unanimous decision in a UFC fight shown on ESPN.
The judges all agreed as she scored a 30-27, 30-27, 29-28 decision over 24-fight winner Roxanne Modafferi in a battle between top-10 flyweight contenders at an empty arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Seventh-ranked Murphy controlled the fight with a strong right hand and landed more power punches, including a devastating shot early in the second round that staggered Modafferi and a nice uppercut in the third round.
Murphy, of Chugiak High fame, improved her professional record to 13-4 after three straight wins.
The 5-foot-5, 125-pounder is 5-4 in nine career appearances in the UFC.
After losing her first two UFC fights, Murphy now has a winning record in the world’s premier mixed martial arts league.
Murphy, 36, dominated the action in the middle of the octagon with her quick hands, but she also held her own whenever the fighters got tied up against the fence. That happened in each of the three rounds and each time Murphy wigged out of trouble.
Sixth-ranked Modafferi, 37, owns five career wins by submission and wanted to take the fight to the ground, where she held the advantage.
But she couldn’t take down Murphy – in fact, it was Murphy who scored back-to-back takedowns in the second round, including a beautiful body slam.
Modafferi (27-18) in the third round did catch Murphy with an elbow blow, which bloodied her left eye. But it was too little, too late.
Murphy’s win was well earned and keeps alive her hopes at a title shot in the flyweight division.