Good Sports - Marion Reneau

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Porterville native making a career in the UFC (KFSN)

Amid all the noise inside a busy Visalia Jiu-Jitsu gym, one member is quietly training or maybe not so quiet.

"Walking into the cage is a surreal feeling, you are locked from the outside. You are in the cage and there is only one way out. A tap, a snap or a nap. You don't want one of those. You want your hand raised at the end it's just one of those things you just have to fight out of," says 12th ranked UFC Bantamweight Marion Reneau.

The Porterville native and Farmersville High physical education teacher isn't your average UFC fighter.

"She's a school teacher, a mom, going to be a new wife, she's a fighter and she does it gives equal amount of time to everything and still is able to put her son and family first," said Jiu-Jitsu coach Tom Knox.

Reneau was a track and field athlete at Long Beach State and in her late 20's began MMA training out of necessity and to put money away for her son's college tuition.

"I was a single mother for a long time and living paycheck to paycheck isn't fun. So I needed a little bit of extra income," said Reneau.

A reputation was quickly earned.

"My nickname is the Belizian Bruiser. When I first started doing Jiu-Jitsu I was the only female here," Reneau explained. "It so happened that everytime I rolled with somebody they were ending up with a bloody nose, a fat lip, a black eye, their testicles were hurting somehow, some way so they gave me the nickname the bruiser."

That intensity paved way to a professional career and a contract with the UFC in 2015.

"Sometimes I have to tell her to take a step back, relax. But she's a very intense person. When she gets in that cage she hits a switch," said boxing coach Eloy Garza.

With fists of fury and determination in her eyes, the 38-year-old still has a lot of fight left in her.

"I'm not here to play around. This is a contest and I want to win. So when the time comes, I'll retire. But along the way I'm going to enjoy the journey. This is so fun,"said Reneau.

Fun for "The Belizean Bruiser" just not her opponents.
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