Leah Taylor Wins Glamour MMA Grappling Tournament
Last Saturday saw SBGi Portland coach and BJJ black belt, Leah Taylor, take part in the inaugural, all-women’s Glamour MMA event at the Roseland Theater in downtown Portland. Leah was competing as part of an eight woman tournament made up of some of the most exciting, up and coming female grapplers in the Pacific North West region. Despite strong competition, Leah Taylor was undoubtedly a class above the opposition. After three dominant displays she was crowned champion, walking away with a $500 reward for finishing in first place.
Leah Taylor Defeats Three On Her Way To Victory
In her opening bout, Leah went up against Katie Ericson, a purple belt who stepped in on one day’s notice to compete. The difference in ability was made evident in short order, as, after an initial feeling out period on the feet, Leah abruptly dove in, secured mount, and had Ericson tapping to an armbar within seconds of hitting the mat.
Her second contest saw Leah up against Ashleigh Force, a purple belt from Impact Jiu Jitsu. Leah again was first to attack, securing a take down before taking her opponent’s back and submitting her via rear-naked choke.
In the tournament final, Leah faced off against Stephanie Webber, an MMA fighter with a professional record of 2-2. By far her most taxing of opponents, Leah found herself up against the cage in the opening stages of the match. Webber then succeeded in bringing Leah down to the mat. It was at this point though, that the tide quickly changed. Leah effortlessly worked her way around her opponent to take her back before Webber had a chance to pin her down and secure a position. Webber put up a valiant effort, defending against the choke for several minutes before managing to work an escape to half guard. It wasn’t long before Leah worked her way to mount, and as Webber tried to turn on her side, Leah took her arm and secured her second armbar of the night, leaving Webber with no choice but to tap.
Post Tournament Interview with the Champion
After the fight, Stephanie Webber commented that Leah was an awesome, experienced competitor, stating jokingly that the mistake in her game plan was bringing the grappling match to the ground. Indeed, once the match hit the mat, Leah’s dominant BJJ was evident to all the see, and victory always seemed inevitable. After the final, Leah took the time to thank Glamour MMA for putting on the event, she thanked her coaches, as well as the other teammates who had helped her prepare, and those who had come out in such numbers to support her. She also thanked each and every woman who had been involved in the evening’s card, acknowledging the effort it takes just to cut weight and step foot in the cage. When asked if we were likely to see Leah again at future Glamour MMA events, Leah stated she was definitely open to the idea, and said she would probably like to take a couple of amateur MMA fights at some point in the future.
Leah Taylor’s dominance in the cage was perhaps only matched by the larger SBGi tribe’s dominant presence in the crowd. A sea of shirts donning the SBG gorilla logo made so much noise for Leah that the ring announcer had trouble completing his introductions! It was a fantastic occasion for everyone involved, and definitely exciting to see one of Oregon’s first female BJJ black belts back competing. Congratulations Leah!