LAS VEGAS, NV-- A mixed martial arts fighter from Spokane became the first woman to win The Ultimate Fighter on TV Saturday night in Las Vegas. Julianna Pena was part of the 18th season of the reality show.
Pena "The Venezuelan Vixen" beat Jessica Rakoczy with a technical knockout in the first round of their fight at the Mandalay Bay. Pena won a six-figure contract with the UFC.
Pena was part of the show’s first female cast and was selected as the number one female pick overall.
"I just like the idea of going toe to toe with somebody," said Pena who has trained for nearly six years as a MMA fighter.
The show finished taping during the summer. However, Pena did not slow down. She trained two times a day at a North Spokane gym.
Her passion for fighting began with a cardio kickboxing class. Yet, she said convincing her family to let her pursue her MMA dream was the hardest part. Julianna Pena is also the sister of former KREM 2 News morning weather anchor Grace Pena.
Follow Julianna "The Venezuelan Vixen" Pena on Facebook here. Follow Julianna "The Venezuelan Vixen" Pena on Facebook here.