Thursday, November 13, 2008

“Steel” to help launch women’s MMA in the PFC

Lemoore, Calif. – The Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore is widely recognized as the Mecca of women’s boxing.

And now Palace Fighting Championship President Christian Printup is expecting to do the same thing for women’s mixed martial arts.

“I’ve always had plans on doing women’s MMA here,” Printup said. “We’ve had tremendous success with women’s boxing here and we’re going to use the same model here with women’s MMA.”

On Thursday, November 20 PFC history will be made, as a pair of women’s MMA bouts will be featured on PFC 11’s “All In”.

In the featured women’s bout, American Gladiator’s “Steel”, Erin Toughill, will make her return to action against Ohio’s Jan Finney.

Toughill sports a 7-2-1 record and will be competing in MMA for the first time since a September 2006 when she defeated Jen Case.

“I’ve been training so hard for this fight and I’ve had some problems getting an opponent. I never underestimate anyone. I always train just as hard for every opponent,” Toughill said. “This last year I did American Gladiator and the year before that a few fights fell through.”

Toughill is widely recognized as one of the top women’s fighters in the world. She carries a 7-3-1 record in pro boxing and has previously boxed at the Palace.

“I know that she’s Steel from American Gladiator and has a great record,” said Finney (4-5). “She’s a boxer and a brown belt in jiu-jitsu. She’s good and the real deal.”

Toughill doesn’t know what to expect from Finney, but says she’s prepared for anything.

“I really don’t know a lot about her except from what I’ve heard and that is that she is a standup fighter. I’ve done some background and saw a little footage, but I’m not too concerned with who she is,” Toughill said.

“The first thing people need to know about me as a fighter is I’m exciting and I try to be aggressive. I try to definitely give the fans a good fight. I’m perfectly comfortable on the ground and a lot of people underestimate my ground, which is weird because I’m a brown belt. I prefer to standup and I’m more of a puncher. I like to end a lot of fights by knockout with knees and punches.”

Finney will not be one of those people that underestimates Toughill’s ground game. In fact, Finney rather keep the fight standing.

“I prefer to stand and I have a pretty decent right hand. I’m still new to the sport and working on my ground game. But it’s coming around,” Finney said. “Hopefully, we can keep it standing. If it goes to the ground, I’m game, though. She’s a bigger girl than me, but I’m ready to fight and I’m going to give her everything and come hard.”

In a preliminary fight, Hanford, Calif. flyweight Paulina Ramirez (0-0) takes on Fresno, Calif.’s Brittany Briano (0-0).

Tickets can be purchased at or charge by phone 1-800-225-2277 and at the Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino gift shop.

In the main event, Visalia, Calif. middleweight Doug Marshall (8-3) battles rival Tulare Calif.’s Rafael del Real (5-10). In PFC championship action, Los Angeles, Calif.’s light heavyweight champ Jorge Oliveira (3-2-1) defends his title in a rematch against St. Paul Minn.’s Isaiah Larson (6-1).

Las Vegas, Nev.’s Ulysses Gomez (2-0) will take on Thailand’s Rambaa Somdet (5-2) in a one of two flyweight semifinals. In the other showdown, Hanford, Calif.’s Luis Gonzales (3-0) is pitted against Phoenix, Ariz.’s Pat Runez (4-0). The winners will face each other on January 22 at PFC 12.

In other action;

-North Highland’s, Calif. middleweight Jaime Jara (20-5) vs. Rio De Janiero, Brazil’s Leopoldo Serao (14-7).

-Las Vegas, Nev. featherweight Eddie Yagin (11-3-1) vs. Oroville, Calif.’s Shawn Bias (13-6).

-Oakland, Calif. lightweight Dominique Robinson (13-2-1) vs. Osaka, Japan’s Takumi Nakayama (13-11-4).

-Visalia, Calif. middleweight Kenny Ento (9-4) vs. Merced, Calif.’s Phil Collins (6-4)

-Lemoore, Calif. lightweight Poppies Martinez (16-5) vs. Porterville, Calif.’s Tony Llamas (7-7).

-Lemoore, Calif. lightweight Mickey Martinez (5-1-1) vs. Visalia, Calif.’s Darren Crisp (4-3).

-Hanford, Calif. featherweight Chad Mendes (1-0) vs. Fresno, Calif.’s Ralph Lopez (4-2).

-Las Vegas, Nev. lightweight Evan Dunham (6-0) vs. Phoenix, Ariz.’s Victor Meza (7-0).

-Las Vegas, Nev. Lightweight Jason Carpenter (0-0) vs. Bakersfield, Calif.’s Juan Lopez (2-3).



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