Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Ukrainian fighter Maryna Moroz had a lot more on her mind that a fight on Saturday night at UFC 272 but she still pulled off a dominant victory over former teammate Mariya Agapova.

It was a grappling showcase from Moroz, who nearly wrapped up a submission in the opening round before putting Agapova on the canvas and locking up a head and arm choke to finish the fight with the end coming at 3:27 in the second round.

Afterwards, Moroz was brought to tears as she addressed the conflict happening in Ukraine following a Russian invasion that started more than a week ago.

“If you know, my country has a war right now and my family [is] in the Ukraine,” Moroz said. “I had a hard week. I’m worrying, I’m crying because my family are in a bad situation.

“Thank you to everyone messaging me, supporting me because this week was hard for me. I want to cry because of this war in my country. Thank you everyone.”

The Iron Lady Maryna Moroz makes it – !

[ #UFC272 | Prelims are LIVE on @ESPNPlus ]

— UFC (@ufc) March 6, 2022

As difficult as it was to even make it to fight night with everything happening at home, Moroz put on one of her strongest performances to date while facing a tough challenge from Agapova after they previously trained together at American Top Team in Florida.

From the opening exchange, Moroz was looking to negate Agapova’s striking and put her on the ground, which is where the majority of the first round took place. Moroz was constantly threatening a rear-naked choke but Agapova was able to resist before finally slipping free from the position.

Moroz nearly locked up an armbar as well but Agapova was able to make it to the end of the round.

It was a short-lived escape as Moroz wasted no time putting Agapova down again at the start of the second round but this time she advanced her position to quickly latch onto the hear and arm choke. As soon as Moroz put pressure down on the neck, Agapova grimaced before tapping out to signal the end of the fight.

It had been nearly two years since Moroz last competed but she certainly made the most of her opportunity on Saturday night as she secured her third win in a row while also walking away victorious during a very emotionally taxing situation.

“I’m back. I’m happy,” Moroz said. “I’m ready to fight again. Thank you very much to everyone.”


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