Following back to back wins to close out 2018, flyweight prospect Hailey Cowan was looking to keep her momentum going with a win in her first bout of 2019 versus Sarah Click at LFA 63 in March.
Shortly into the second round of her bout with Click, Cowan was able to secure a rear naked choke and pick up her third win in a row following her lone career loss in her pro debut.
“I was super excited about that fight,” Cowan told MMAWeekly.com. “(Click) was a very good Muay Thai fighter. I kind of got to go in and show that I could hang with a good Thai fighter, and show a little bit of grappling as well.”
Having no combat sports experience prior to her training in MMA, Cowan feels she’s made exponential growth in her game over the past two years and is only getting better.
“I am improving super quickly,” said Cowan. “I’m still really new to this stuff, so I’m learning curve is almost vertical. Each fight I’m able to do something totally different than before. My learning curve is straight up.
“I’m really excited for everyone to see what I’ve been working on. I’ve had about four months to dial in and just improve everywhere. This is going to be the perfect fight for me to showcase what I’ve been doing.”
At LFA 73 this Friday in Dallas, Cowan (3-1) will look to keep her winning streak going when she takes on Jessica Middleton (5-5) in a main card 125-pound bout.
“Jessica is super battle tested,” Cowan said. “She’s fought a lot of good girls, but I’ve noticed that she tends to do better with smaller fighters. She’s more aggressive (against them). I’m very big. Trying to play the bully role with me won’t work. It’s a lot to harder to bully someone who is your size or larger.
“She calls herself a striker, but what I’ve seen of her, her grappling is more dangerous than her striking. I feel prepared everywhere. I think I have a little better game. I think what evens it out is that she’s had so many fights against so many good opponents. I’m not sleeping on her at all. I know that counts for something.”
Though she has a lot of hype surrounding her as a prospect to watch, Cowan feels she’s able to put that aside and focus on her own goal of making it to the top level of MMA.
“The pressure doesn’t bother me at all,” said Cowan. “I’ve been an elite level athlete since I was eight years old in gymnastics. So the pressure I kind of feed off that.
“After this fight I have two more fights with the LFA. I would love to finish out that contract and maybe take that next step. I’d love to go to the UFC. Each opponent I want to fight a better opponent than the one before, that way I’m testing myself and I don’t step into the UFC unprepared. I think Jessica is a big step, then after that we’ll see. “