Ana Julaton scores TKO win in MMA debut

Ana “The Hurricane” Julaton made quite a splash in her women’s mixed martial arts debut Friday night.

Competing under ONE Fighting Championship, Julaton defeated Aya Saeid Saber via third-round technical knockout at the “Rise of Heroes” event from the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila.

Julaton, the first Filipino-American boxer to win the IBA and WBO women’s junior featherweight championships, reversed an attempted takedown into a full mount position, where she viciously pounded away at Saber until referee Oliver Coste called a halt to the bout with only 59 seconds remaining in the round.

Egyptian kickboxing champion Saber almost seized victory in the second round when she trapped the 33-year-old Julaton in a guillotine choke, but the San Francisco-born Julaton showed great resiliency by breaking free with some hard slams.

Saber, who fell to 2-4 as a professional, has gone 1-4 since winning her MMA debut under Egyptian Fighting Championship in October 2012.

Julaton, who studied martial arts for over 20 years and has two black belts in Taekwondo and Kenpo Karate, is scheduled to resume her boxing career on May 29 against an opponent yet to be named.