|Dave Mandel/Invicta FC
Quebec native Felicia Spencer makes her long-awaited Octagon bow this weekend.
Invicta FC featherweight pack leader Felicia Spencer makes her Ultimate Fighting Championship bow this weekend in Rochester, New York against Australian striker Megan Anderson, and ahead of the main card clash, I recently had the opportunity to chat with the promotion’s latest 145-pound acquisition.
The 28-year-old Quebec native holds an undefeated 6-0 professional record, claiming the Invicta FC featherweight title via submission when paired with Pam Sorensen last November, and received her call up to the UFC in early March. Spencer’s signing with the organization continues the influx of Invicta talent, with the previously mentioned Anderson, Yana Kunitskaya and Tonya Evinger all making the move in promotion in recent years. Despite the shallow pool at 145 pounds, Spencer adds to the talent-laden division alongside the likes of champion Amanda Nunes, stalwart Cris Cyborg, Holly Holm and Cat Zingano.
Jungle MMA member Spencer is immensely well rounded, holding black belts in both Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Taekwondo. On display in her victory over Megan Anderson, the predominantly kickboxing oriented Holly Holm scored some impressive takedowns and managed some heavy top pressure. Grappling exchanges may prove hugely impactful on the outcome of this matchup. “As a fellow Invicta FC champion, I have to respect her game and talents. I am 100% confident that I can shut down her attacks and bring things to the table that she hasn’t felt before. I see the fight being dynamic and fun to watch – while it lasts. I’ll be bringing the best version of myself to the Octagon.”
Felicia ‘FeeNom’ Spencer’s undefeated streak and finishing ability makes her hugely marketable already ahead of her promotional debut, and a victory over Megan Anderson surely catapults the Canadian into title contention. “My division has been portrayed to be shallow more than it is. There are more women who healthily fight, or should fight, at 145 pounds. While there are fewer than the popular 115 or 135 divisions, it is time to bring light to all of those who have been scratching the surface for years. I’ve never been discouraged by the lack of opportunity in the division. I knew by working hard and staying consistent, MY time would come. This is my division now. The Lioness came up for an epic matchup that fans and the UFC wanted, but I don’t expect her to stick around. I am competitive with ANY female on the planet.”
Despite making her professional bow just four years ago, Felicia Spencer has already claimed her premier world championship. The gritty Pam Sorenson was dispatched in the fourth round of their November meeting last year, earning her eventual move to the UFC. “Appreciation was the overwhelming emotion for me when I won the title. For Invicta FC, for their amazing promotion, for my opponent being such a respected competitor, to have this opportunity; for my coaches, for my teammates, family, friends, and fans for their support, and for myself, for staying the course. Signing to the UFC ‘sunk in’ in phases. I was a little anxious with the unknown at first, but honestly, over the last few weeks getting signed to fight Megan, it has all felt so right and so natural. I am feeling more confident and ready to put my skills on the big stage every day.”
Now honing her craft in Orlando, Florida with Jungle MMA, Felicia Spencer’s background in the mixed-martial arts community stems well back to her teenage years. “I am a lifetime martial artist and have actually been training for MMA competitions for ten years. I was supposed to take my first professional MMA fight in 2010, back when the amateur level didn’t exist in Florida, back when Gina Carano was the big thing. My fight fell through, the next month the laws changed, and I had to record five amateur fights before going professional. It took considerably longer than expected to acquire the ‘experience’ needed, but my time came and I am grateful for the opportunity to be where I am today.
As mentioned earlier, an eye-catching victory over Megan Anderson for Felicia Spencer firmly installs her into title contention, in an often overlooked UFC division, the Canadian looks to spearhead. “I am eager to be the face of the division. I know there are a few other featherweights getting signed and the UFC are getting behind us; It is an honor to be at the top of this division. My performance is important, not only for my future, but to bring eyes to the legitimacy of the women’s featherweight division.