Tecia Torres entered The Ultimate Fighter 20 as one of the favorites to become the inaugural UFC strawweight champion. She was seeded no. 3 out of the 16-woman cast and was undefeated prior to the show’s debut on Wednesday.
Her hopes to winning the show and the UFC belt were dashed in the first episode when she was lost to Randa Markos by unanimous decision. She felt she did enough to win and so did her coach, top lightweight contender Gilbert Melendez.
“I totally scored it for Torres,” Melendez told MMAWeekly.com. “I thought she controlled it.”
“She did get taken down at the end. I think with a couple of seconds left she let the lady advance, knowing it. She didn’t get off on the ground and pound like she did in the second round. I thought she fought her game plan and landed more significant strikes, but it did look pretty close when I saw it. It was close,” added Melendez.
The 25-year-old American Top Team trained Torres was the first pick for Team Melendez. A loss wasn’t the way he wanted to start the season.
“That was a little tough start for Team Melendez right here; my no. 1 pick going down,” he said. “I thought Tecia won that fight and I still stand by that.”
It’s a long season and a lot of things can happen. Torres could get back in the competition depending on what transpires in the coming weeks.