Tabatha Ricci, looking for her first win inside the octagon, welcomed newcomer Maria Oliveira to the fold at UFC Vegas 41.
The all-Brazil battle had “Baby Shark” Ricci looking to bounce back from a loss to Manon Fiorot. Oliveira, a RIZIN Fighting Federation alum, entered the strawweight bout off a pair of wins.
As the action got underway in Las Vegas on Saturday, Ricci right away attempted to roll for a leg but came up short. Ricci, the much shorter fighter, found her way into the clinch after landing a huge left hand. Nothing came from it and she was back on the outside. Oliveira landed some kicks but it was Ricci finding the range with her hands. Oliveira did tag Ricci with a right and it forced Ricci to clinch up. Oliveira got out and continued to land a lot of kicks. Another kick was thrown from Oliveira but that time Ricci caught the leg and swept Oliveira to her back. A little too late but Ricci ended the round on top.
Oliveira was more aggressive to start round two moving a lot more and letting her hands go. Ricci exploded forward and easily secured a single-leg takedown, moving right into mount. A few good elbows from Ricci landed but somehow Oliveira scrambled and got back to her feet. Now late in the round, Oliveira had trouble landing and Ricci was the one landing. As Oliveira came forward Ricci changed levels and got another takedown. Like in round one Ricci ended the round on top.
Dominating start to the 2nd for Ricci
— UFC (@ufc) October 23, 2021
Oliveira came out in the final round pressing forward and defended the first takedown from Ricci in the round. Oliveira was not rushing in too much but Ricci was still able to explode forward and get another takedown. Ricci wasn’t able to hold the fight down as Oliveira used the cage to get to her feet. Ricci shot in for another takedown and while the cage saved Oliveira initially, Ricci went to the legs and got the fight down. Once again Ricci ended the round on top and that’s the fight. Ricci won the clear decision on the scorecards.
Official Result: Tabatha Ricci def. Maria Oliveira by unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)