Sabina Mazo picked up her first UFC win on Saturday and did so in an incredibly dominant way.
Mazo defeated the very tough Shana Dobson via unanimous decision at UFC 241, picking up scores of 30-24, 30-25, and 30-26 from the judges. The women’s flyweight fight opened up the event at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.
UFC 253: Adesanya vs. Costa is this Saturday!
- Main event: Adesanya vs. Costa 🏆
- Co-main event: Reyes vs. Blachowicz 🏆
Although the performance was very impressive, and Mazo was able to pick up that elusive first Octagon win in the process, she is ready to put it behind her and move on to the next challenge.
“It feels great,” Mazo told The Body Lock. “I also feel like it’s over and it’s time to put in the work, focus on my next fight. I’m spending time with my family, they’re here, but I’m ready to go back to the gym.”
“Columbian Queen” was able to show a well-rounded game with her high-level striking, and also a top-notch ground game in the victory. Mazo made her UFC debut in March at UFC on ESPN 2 in Philadelphia, taking on Maryna Moroz. Mazo suffered the first loss of her career after winning her first six professional fights.
Mazo didn’t stew on the loss for long, as she headed right back to the gym to improve her game and implement the lessons she had learned in her first Octagon appearance.
“I feel I didn’t trust enough of my skills in that first fight,” Mazo explained. “Of course, Maryna is an excellent opponent, and it was a good fight, but I feel I didn’t put everything I’ve got in there and that’s what I learned the most. I have to give it all from the first moment, dominate from the first moment and that’s what I did in this last fight. I definitely learned a lot from the debut, I just wanted to dominate entirely, finish the fight — I didn’t finish the fight — but I wanted to reinvent myself, go back to the gym and be able to do that for this one.”
Dobson had returned to action following a 16-month layoff and proved her grit throughout the 15-minute contest on Saturday. Mazo landed a body kick early that made Dobson visibly uncomfortable, which lead to a takedown and a barrage of shots on the ground, ultimately finishing the round in full mount. The pace and versatility of Mazo’s style continued to be prevalent throughout the second round, and in the final frame, Mazo continued to look for the finish, landing a ferocious barrage of knees to the head and body. Dobson was able to weather the storm throughout, but it was an impressive showing from the 22-year-old Mazo.
Mazo was impressed with the heart Dobson was able to show and, in terms of her own self-reflection on the victory, she — like most fighters in the game — was happy, yet critical at the same time.
“She is an amazing warrior,” Mazo said of Dobson. “She handled it very good, the pain, the pressure, she didn’t surrender and that’s impressive from any fighter.
“For sure, I did the work I wanted to do,” Mazo continued. “But I feel, and I think we all saw, that I could’ve finished the fight on many occasions. It’s just to read a little bit better the fight, the other fighter, their expressions, because I had a lot of chances to finish the fight in the first and the last round with the knees. I did a good job with what I was trying to do in that fight but we are always going to criticize our own work.”
Mazo has her sights set on becoming a UFC women’s flyweight champion, although, the Kings MMA standout is more than happy to take on the best women in the UFC before rushing into everything. With a marathon-not-a-sprint approach to her Octagon career, Mazo is hoping for a quick turnaround to continue climbing the rungs of the 125-pound ladder.
While traveling on the road to the gold, Mazo will look to continue to evolve her game and aims to make her future opponents regret putting pen to paper.
“I think it’s great because it’s pretty new, this division,” Mazo said. “I’m down to fight anyone and I’m a believer that if you want to be the champ, you have to face anyone. It doesn’t matter if they’re in the top-10, top-3, top-15, I’m ready and I’m gonna be ready. I don’t have a name, I just want to climb. I don’t even have to rush. I feel like that’s an advantage that I have, I can take my time. I just want to put out the best I can in each one of my fights, and not rush anything, say ‘I need the belt, I need the belt.’ No, no, no! I just need to go there and kill someone.”