Tonight the historic Madison Square Garden played host to Bellator 180. Marking the debut of one of female boxing’s brightest stars in MMA, Heather Hardy faced off against Alice Yauger in a three round affair.
When it comes to combat sports Heather Hardy, knows only success. Having pushed the sport of female Boxing and faced the many challenges that entailed, tonight she looked to put those experiences to work in her new “office” the Bellator cage.
Alice Yauger is no stranger to fighting, having started training in Muya Thai at an early age before moving on to Boxing. She competed in the first all-women National Golden Gloves tournament at 21 before turning pro and that’s all before she started training for MMA. Tonight she found herself almost back where she started standing across from a boxer.
This was a fight that got off to quick start and the pace kept up from there, with Hardy focusing on here stand up and Yauger happy to oblige.
The first round saw both women trade shots and work inside of the clinch with Hardy showing off her superior boxing skills and Yauger controlling the clinch. Hardy started off looking a little stiff, however once she got going, the boxing champ began to work in some kicks with her offense. Yauger however did catch a late Hardy kick close to the end of the round, pushing Hardy back and pursuing her.
The second round saw Hardy begin to pull away in this one with superior boxing and a strong overhead right. Yauger was able to test Hardy’s takedown defense with a few trip attempts. but the round ended with a bloodied Yauger and Heather Hardy pulling away.
The third round saw more of the same up until an accidental headbutt opened Hardy up, a cut bad enough that it needed to be checked out by the ringside physician. The doctor concluded that Hardy could continue, and once the fight resumed and both women came out with a sense of urgency trying to end the fight. With both women throwing shots trying to finish, Hardy caught Yauger and dropped her, however showing her inexperience in the cage she didn’t pursue he downed opponent and allowed her to get back up — only to land another flurry of shots before Big John called things off.
Heather Hardy def. Alice Yauger by TKO, Round 3, 4:47