A pair of strawweights will face each other early next year as the UFC has booked Jessica Penne against Tabatha Ricci . Two people with knowledge of the situation informed MMA Junkie that Penne (14-6 MMA, 3-4 UFC) and Ricci (7-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) will meet March 4 at an event expected to be UFC 285 from a location to be determined. The people requested anonymity since the promotion has yet to make an announcement. Penne, 39, is a former UFC strawweight title contender coming off a unanimous decision loss to Emily Ducote in her only fight of 2022. Prior to that, Penne was on a two-fight winning streak – against Karolina Kowalkiewicz and Loopy Godinez – as she returned from a nearly four-year layoff. Ricci, 27, is just nine fights into her professional career with three UFC appearances.
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