Marina Shafir wins Tuff-N-Uff strap

Marina Shafir took another dominant step forward in her mixed martial arts career late Friday night.

The Glendale Fighting Club-trained judoka used a brutal head-arm choke to defeat Tabitha Patterson in 59 seconds at Tuff-N-Uff’s “The Future Stars of MMA” at the Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

In the process, Shafir, 25, improved to 4-0 in her amateur career and claimed the Tuff-N-Uff women’s featherweight (145 pounds) championship in the evening’s main event.

“I was just trying to use what I’ve been practicing lately,” Shafir said in a postfight interview in the cage, “and that head and arm has been working for me.”

Previously, Shafir needed just 3:36 of combined time in the cage to dispose of her first three opponents via first-round armbar.

Shafir changed the script on Friday, weathering a storm of haymakers from Patterson (3-2) at the onset to claim victory.

Patterson wasted little time, throwing a one-two combo at the start with a huge straight at the tail end.

Shafir went for the clinch during the onslaught and Patterson landed a few rights in the process, but Shafir ate them well and forced the fight to the cage. She went for a trip, but Patterson defended it.

Shafir then expertly locked on the head-arm choke and slammed Patterson to the canvas. The referee soon followed to rescue an unconscious Patterson.

“She landed a couple, but I still got it,” Shafir said.

Shafir, who was cornered by GFC teammates Jessamyn Duke and Shayna Baszler, along with Andy Dermenjian, trains alongside Ultimate Fighting Championship women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. Duke fights Peggy Morgan Saturday night at the Mandalay Bay in Vegas on the UFC’s “The Ultiamte Fighter Finale.”

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