A UFC bantamweight matchup between former title challenger, ‘Rocky’ Raquel Pennington, and #10 ranked contender, Marion ‘The Belizean Bruiser’ Reneau is set to feature at a UFC Fight Night event on June 20th. – with Las Vegas leading the line of potential candidates to host the upcoming event.
One-time bantamweight title challenger, Pennington, will look to prevent a second consecutive loss in the promotion, following a rematch defeat to former titleholder, Holly Holm at UFC 246 in January.
Reneau, on the other hand, will attempt to prevent a third straight loss, following decision defeats to former Invicta FC bantamweight champion, Yana Kunitskaya, and now Bellator MMA featherweight, Cat Zingano. A pairing between Reneau and Ketlen Vieira was scheduled for the postponed UFC 250 event until VISA issues prevented the Brazilian travelling to the United States. News of the matchup was first reported by MMA Junkie writer, Mike Bohn.
Pennington, 31, featured on the eighteenth instalment of The Ultimate Fighter and has managed a record of 6-5 under the UFC banner since. The Colorado native suffered a debut defeat to former strawweight champion, Jéssica Andrade, before avenging that defeat after a victory over Ashlee Evans-Smith, and an earlier defeat to Holm. After a re-run with Andrade, Pennington earned a title shot with victories over Bethe Correia, Elizabeth Philips, and TUF coach, former bantamweight best, Miesha Tate.
At UFC 224 in May of 2018, Pennington travelled to enemy territory in Brazil, losing a one-sided final frame knockout defeat to current champion, Amanda Nunes. A defeat to inaugural featherweight gold-holder, Germaine de Randamie followed that December, before the Triple Threat Gym trainee returned to winning ways with a close decision win over fellow contender, Irene Aldana in July of last year.
Veteran all-rounder, Reneau debuted in the promotion back in January of 2015, taking a unanimous decision win over Alexis Dufresne. In common opponent, Andrade, Reneau also scored a victory, via an arm-triangle triumph. In other common opposition, the 42-year-old dropped defeats to the previously mentioned, Holm, and Evans-Smith. In a spell of promising form, the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt scored an unbeaten run of four fights.
Firstly, a victory over Milana Dudieva came in November of 2016, before battling to a majority draw with the aforementioned, Correia. In her two most prior wins, Reneau has bested both Talita Bernardo and former 135-pound title chaser, Olympic silver medalist in freestyle wrestling, Sara McMann.