Julianna Pena has not fought since winning “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 18. | Photo: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
After winning her Ultimate Fighting Championship debut in 2013, Julianna Pena suffered a devastating knee injury while training and has been on the shelf ever since.
Now, “The Venezuelan Vixen” is scheduled to return to action against Milana Dudieva in a bantamweight bout at UFC Fight Night “Mendes vs. Lamas” on April 4. The fight was announced Tuesday by UFC officials through ESPN.com.
The card takes place at Patriot Center in Fairfax, Va., and is headlined by a featherweight tilt pitting Chad Mendes against Ricardo Lamas.
Pena, 25, was the winner of “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 18, defeating Jessica Rakoczy via first-round technical knockout at the show’s finale. Shortly thereafter, Pena was injured while sparring with a male counterpart at SikJitsu in Spokane, Wa. The ailment forced her to withdraw from a planned encounter with Jessica Andrade at UFC 171.
Dudieva, 25, is coming off a closely contested split decision win against Elizabeth Phillips at UFC Fight Night “Bisping vs. Le.” With the win in her UFC debut, Dudieva stretched her current winning streak to three fights.