Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Spotlight Interview: Tecia Torres

Tecia Torres, after competing in Muay Thai recently began her MMA career. So far so good, two fights and two wins. Most recently she had a convincing 28 second TKO win over Rebecca Gruitza for the NAAFS. This win earned her a title shot for the NAAFS in December. She showed great striking, combining both power and speed with accuracy. At a young age, Tecia has a long and good future in the sport.

Q: To start, can you talk about how you got started in the sport?
A: I started with Tae Kwon Do. I ended up getting my Black Belt in Junior Tae Kwon Do and Freestyle Karate. After that I went to college and took off a year. I decided I wanted to continue my Martial Arts and started with Muay Thai, after 15 fights with Muay Thai and 2 and a half years of Jiu-Jitsu and getting my Blue Belt, I decided it was time to start MMA. I have had two fights and they have gone pretty well.

Q: Coming from Muay Thai, does not being able to head kick in amateur MMA bother you?
A: It doesn't bother me, but it surprised me that I couldn't head kick. I understand we have no shin guards on so its a safety factor. But, it's ok, I like kicking to the head, but I can do just as much damage kicking to the legs and stomach.

Q: You just fought Rebecca Gruitza, going in, did her height advantage worry you?
A: No, not at all. I am a strong girl for my height, so I am confident in every fight I go into. I fought two or three girls who were 5'7" in Muay Thai and I did well. It was an advantage factor, but I wasn't worried about it.

Q: Was the plan to come out aggressive or did you just see an opening?
A: I saw the opening. Once I hit her one time, I saw her face change and knew I could keep going and it would be over with. I usually feel out my opponent and see what they are going to do, and actually I like to be a counter fighter. But I saw the opening and went for it, and it worked.

Q: I am sure I know the answer, but overall how satisfied were you with your performance?
A: I was very satisfied with my performance. Going into the fight I was confident and coming out I was very happy with the win. Fighting in Ohio for the NAAFS, potentially will lead to great things, and is leading to great things already, so I am happy they brought me and my team down there.

Q: What did you think of the people involved with the NAAFS?
A: The whole event was awesome. I liked the set-up, the venue was nice, the people were nice, Nichole (Long) was nice, my opponent was nice, so it was all together really good. I look forward to coming back in December and bring my teammates so they can showcase their skills.

Q: You and Rebecca have been really respectful with each other. Is that something important to you?
A: Yes, before and after the fight I am always respectful to my opponent. I look at it as fun, we both know we are going to get hit. But after the fight....its a win lose situation, someone wins and someone loses. You might as well be happy with the outcome. You put your effort into it, it takes a lot to step in there, as a woman and a fighter. No point in being angry, you learn from your performance.

Q: With that win, you get a title shot, are you excited to get a title shot with a big company, that quick into your career?
A: Most definitely. I didn't see it happening this quick, but since it's happening, I believe I am ready. I am so thankful I took the time to get a great stand-up background and a great Jiu-Jitsu background before I went to MMA. I didn't just jump in. I feel like I can hang with those girls on top in the 115 division, and make my way up that little 30 list they put out there. I am making my way up one step at a time.

Q: You have a big trip to Ireland coming up. Can you tell people what that is about?
A: Yep! I recently fought at the IPF World Tournament in Orlando. I've been fighting there the last three years. The last two, I won the tournament. There were people there that saw my fight and liked what I was doing. They offered me the 114 spot on Team USA, to fight in Dublin Ireland for the World Kickboxing Championships. I gladly accepted and will be fighting November 18th through the 28th for Team USA. First time out of the country, so I am excited to test my skills against the top 114 pound girls.

Q: As someone involved in Bodybuilding, one of the first things I noticed was your physique. Do you do a lot of weight training?
A: Actually, not at all. I do maybe one strength and conditioning routine, but its not weight lifting based, more body weight stuff. I do that very Sunday, but besides that, I am just going off genetics right now, and doing Martial Arts since I was 5. I think that's where my muscles come from. In the future, on my list of things to do, is compete at a fitness competition. But it's expensive and something you have to train for, and I am training for fighting right now.

Q: Do you feel because of your looks and size, people may underestimate you?
A: That's a hard question, depends on who you ask. If you see me walking around, usually wearing a tank top and shorts, and the arms are the first thing they see and they say "What do you do? How much do you bench?" and I don't lift weights, I am a fighter. It's something that tones your body. The only thing that makes me maybe underestimated is when I come out, it's different from other girls. I like to come out girly, smiling the whole way there. But as soon as the fight starts I turn into a little pit bull and do what I love, fighting. No sense in being something I'm not. I am a girly girl, I like to wear make-up and dress up.

Q: Do you have any long term MMA goals?
A: Definitely! Right now I wanna take it step by step, work my way up to the top of the amateur 115 division. I would like to go pro with MMA and Muay Thai in the next year. It seems like it's going well right now. Once I go pro I would want to get to the 105 class, because I walk at 120, and a lot of the girls drop to make 115, so at 5'1" I believe 105 would be awesome, but I would have to change my eating habits, that's the one bad thing, I love food. At this point I rely on dieting off the weight, but once I get a good diet I will be able to do that in the future.

Q: Before we finish, anyone you want to thank or mention?
A: My gym, Knuckle Up Fitness, My manager Christopher "CJ" Wilson ( 404-731-082) My sponsors,
Brazen, Tussle Fight Gear, Revgear, Chiro 101, Sutra Lounge, O'Kelly Promotions, Black Eye Athletics, Cartunes. Also, visit my Facebook Fan Page

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