Report: Jessica Aguilar Steps In to Face Marina Rodriguez at UFC Philadelphia

By Jay Pettry Mar 22, 2019

Taking the fight on very short notice, Jessica Aguilar is looking to bounce back from a recent loss by replacing Alexa Grasso, where she will meet Marina Rodriguez at UFC on ESPN 2 next week.

According to MMAFighting.com on Friday, Aguilar (20-7) will be stepping in on just over one week's notice to face Rodriguez (10-0-1) at UFC on ESPN 2 on March 30 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Rodriguez was originally scheduled to compete against Grasso, and Grasso was forced to withdraw for undisclosed reasons.

The first and only World Series of Fighting strawweight champion, Aguilar is looking to improve on her less-than-stellar run inside the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Dropping her most recent bout by armbar to surging contender Weili Zhang at UFC Fight Night 141 in November, she has lost three of four inside the Octagon. Her lone UFC victory came over Jodie Esquibel at UFC Fight Night 133 last July. Before fighting in the UFC, Aguilar maintained a 10-fight win streak over the likes of Megumi Fujii and Carla Esparza.

Rodriguez is unbeaten as a professional, although her UFC debut marked the only blemish on her record, as she fought to a majority draw against Randa Markos at UFC Fight Night 137 last September. The draw was the third in UFC women's divisional history, and the first at strawweight. Prior to that draw, she punched her ticket to the UFC by knocking out Maria de Oliveira Neta at the second episode of the Brazilian version of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series in August 2018.

UFC on ESPN 2 will take place on March 30 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Headlining the event will be a lightweight thriller between Edson Barboza and Justin Gaethje. Co-headlining the event will be a middleweight matchup between David Branch and Jack Hermansson.

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