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10th Planet’s Grace Gundrum had a lot to prove in the main event at Fight to Win 155. She’s worn the title of “next big thing” since she was 12 years old. After earning her black belt in July, she finally had an opportunity to live up to that hype.
Gundrum made her black belt debut against Pati Fontes, a three-time no-gi world champ and reigning Fight to Win Strawweight Champion. Gundrum, who recently turned 18, controlled the match from the outset, pulling guard and methodically climbing to a high guard. From there, she locked a Dead Orchard triangle across Fontes’ shoulders and took her time finishing the armbar.
Gundrum won the match in less than three minutes, and looked like a veteran despite being in her debut black belt appearance.
Gundrum's armbar won her submission of the night honors as well as the strawweight title. And, taking out the no. 4-ranked Fontes, Gundrum should soon move up in the rankings.
Watch: Grace Gundrum vs Pati Fontes at Fight to Win 155
In the co-main event, Devhonte Johnson got the better of a series of stalemates with Vinicius “Trator” Ferreira. Trator pulled guard and tried to tangle Johnson in lasso guard. Johnson kept his limbs mostly free, but was not able to progress past the guard. Still, he was the obvious aggressor, and his forward momentum was enough to earn the win over Trator.
With this victory, Devhonte earned his second win of the year in the Fight to Win ruleset over a major talent. This summer, he beat Fellipe Andrew at Subversiv 3. Devhonte is now 4-1 as a black belt on Fight to Win, with a four-fight win streak.
Watch: Vinicius "Trator" Ferreira vs Devhonte "Bones" Johnson at Fight to Win 155
In one of the premier black belt matchups of the night, Jake Watson beat Matheus Luna by decision. Luna recently passed Watson in the rankings after defeating him in the quarterfinals at Pans. That match was decided by a narrow margin. Although this rematch featured an entirely different ruleset, it could be redeeming for Watson, who controlled the match throughout. He opened with a swarm of berimbolo attempts. He ended the match with a series of convincing footlooks. In between, he took top position or bottom as he wanted it, and he was effective in keeping Luna stagnant in most exchanges.