Fury Professional Grappling 5
Fury Pro Grappling is a relatively new showcase for grappling competitors, with its fifth edition held in Philadelphia this Friday. There were two female fights in the undercard, and one female fight in the main card. Here’s what went down tonight.
Alexandria Whitlock def. Valerie Martinez by split decision
Whitlock is a brown belt training out of Philadelphia and Martinez is a purple belt training out of Virginia. Their match consisted of several minutes of standup, with Martinez chasing foot sweeps while both were relatively upright, not necessarily intent on shooting. Whitlock seemed to be waiting for the opportunity to secure a guillotine, as she was slightly less aggressive than Martinez but still coming off as unconcerned of shot attempts.
Martinez chose to pull guard a few times and each time Whitlock was intent on the chin strap from every top position. The match ended in a scramble for leg locks and no submission. There were no “scoring” positions earned in this match. I have to imagine the judges were torn because Martinez initiated most of the action, but Whitlock ultimately capitalized on those opportunities more.
Jonna Wood def. Chrissy Briggs by decision
Both competitors in this match are experienced brown belts. Wood trains out of Maryland and has extensive MMA experience. Briggs trains out of Allentown, PA and is big in the sub-only scene. In the last Fury event, Wood won a tight decision against another experienced brown belt. Briggs most recently competed at the Midwest Finishers 135 and secured two sub 1-minute wins with her most famous submission, the d’arce.
Their match also featured a heavy standup game, aggressive hand fighting and collar ties. Neither seemed willing to concede bottom position. Both took shots but Wood was able to land a single leg in the last minute of the match. Although Briggs had guillotine grips and even set up a triangle in the last seconds, Fury’s scoring criteria prioritizes positional dominance over submission attempts. In a standing heavy game, Wood took the decision.
Amanda Mazza def. Angelina Martinez by armbar
Mazza and Martinez are both blue belts training out of New Jersey and the only female grapplers on the main card. Mazza had a dominant performance, capitalizing on a double to secure a guillotine which she turned into a convincing armbar. Martinez escaped but was caught in a kimura from top knee shield, which Mazza quickly turned into a sweep and armbar. This was a very quick, entertaining match, with a lot of well executed transitions.
Fury has one of the most interesting and reliable rulesets, in my opinion, with positional dominance taking precedence over submission attempts, although close sub attempts are still counted if the former is equal. Referees are supposed to issue warnings when the match is stalling from standing. On the second warning, they reset the more aggressive athlete to standing position and the less aggressive athlete to seated or open guard. I haven’t seen this happen yet, in male or female matches, but would have liked to since there were several bouts that took place in basically matching stances for nearly the whole time. Matches that went to the ground, however, moved quickly.
If you have any suggestions for future events I can cover, or if I missed an important match, let me know in the comments!
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