A year ago, Flint, Michigan’s Angie Jennings probably wasn’t expecting to be in the position in which she currently finds herself.
Jennings will face Tecumseh, Michigan, kickboxer Katelyn Dykas for Impact Fight League Women’s Flyweight Championship this Saturday, November 2, 2013, in one of the featured bouts at the Donofrio Entertainment and Impact Fight League (in association with the Fillmore Detroit) IFL 58 “Brawl in the Fall” mixed martial arts event at the Fillmore Detroit.
Tickets for IFL 58 “Brawl in the Fall” are priced at $100.00 VIP, $25 Mezzanine, $35 Sections B & C and $15.00 General Admission. General Admission seats are available by calling (248) 770-6000. Mezzanine and Sections B & C seats are available at all Ticket Master locations and the Fillmore Box Office. VIP seats are available by calling (248) 770-6000. On fight night, the action starts at 7 pm.
“I went through a relationship break-up and my life changed a lot,” she explained. “I wanted to fight for years, and then I went to watch a friend fight and that was the first time I saw it live. I immediately called my dad and said ‘I gotta do this! As soon as I got home, I looked for a gym and found Andre Garcia at Ultimate Fighting Academy in Flint.”
A born athlete, the 23-year-old Linden, Michigan, native played every sport in high school and even dabbled in MMA training for a short time, but the break-up and a need for change was the catalyst to the remarkable transformation.
“I’m pretty excited,” she admitted. “I’ve only been training for a year and fighting for six months. My first fight was at Joe Louis Arena on May 18 of this year, on less than 24 hours’ notice. This is the first belt I’ve fought for and my sixth fight. And this is one of my first fights that was scheduled ahead of time. Mostly I find out I’m fighting a day to a week in advance.”
Jennings says she doesn’t know much about her opponent, Dykas, but isn’t worried.
“All I know is she’s a striker. I’ve fought strikers before. Most of my opponents have been very well-rounded. So I just prepare for everything. I will gauge her within the first 30 to 60 seconds and take it from there. I don’t know how the fight will go, but I picture myself with my hand raised at the end.”
Jennings trains twice a day and waitresses, part-time, at Teaser’s of Flint, Michigan (who also sponsor her fighting career). She describes her greatest fighting asset as her speed.
“I have been called a jackrabbit. I’m very quick to react and fast on my feet. I’m pretty well-rounded, but my favorite way to fight is ground-and-pound.”
And so, here she is. A year later and, while the boyfriend is long gone, Jennings is deep into a new lifestyle and career she says will someday lead her to try for a spot in the UFC.
“Winning this title would mean the world to me. Joe Donofrio is my favorite promoter to fight for and there are lots of talented fighters on the card and it’s at such a big venue. I can’t wait.”