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A1 Combat 10 Co-Main Event Breakdown

The calendar is just about to turn to May, but not before another weekend of MMA. It starts this Friday night in Lemoore, CA, near the state capital of Sacramento, where there’s an anniversary party to be held. According to tradition, the gift for a first anniversary is paper, and four fighters put pen to paper to make a championship doubleheader possible this Friday night.

UFC Hall of Fame inductee Urijah Faber‘s throwing the paper anniversary party for his A1 Combat promotion. Three days shy of one year to the day that the organization began its new life since rebranding from Firepower, year two begins.

Live coverage of A1 Combat 10 begins at 10 pm ET/ 7 pm PT from Tachi Palace Events Center, where the UFC tried to hold a restructured UFC 249 in the spring of 2020 during the pandemic, on UFC Fight Pass. Barring any postponed fights between now and then, the card features nine contests.

Strawweight Title at Stake in A1 Combat 10 Co-Main Event

The title fight doubleheader begins with the A1 Combat 10 co-main event, where the Inaugural A1 Combat Strawweight Championship is at stake. Undefeated Taylor Mauldin (3-0 MMA, A1 Combat promotional debut), a veteran of the LFA, meets up with Laura Gallardo (4-2 MMA, A1 Combat promotional debut), an alumna of Invicta FC. This is the former’s third scheduled fight in the last month.

Atypical of most MMA promotions, championship fights in A1 Combat is only a maximum of three rounds at five minutes per round. The A1 Combat 10 co-main event is no exception.

Immediately following the co-main event, supremacy at lightweight is on the line. Erick Sanchez (11-6 MMA, A1 Combat promotional debut) will battle it out against Ayadi Majdeddine (11-4, 1 NC MMA, A1 Combat promotional debut) in the A1 Combat 10 main event. More on that later on in the week.

A1 Combat 10 Co-Main Event Fighter Comparison

Heading into the A1 Combat 10 co-main event on Friday night, Taylor Mauldin stands as the taller gladiator at 5-foot-5, compared to the 5-foot-1 frame of Laura Gallardo. The latter owns a one-inch reach advantage (64 inches to 63 inches) over the former ahead of this title fight.

Ordinarily, at this point in the breakdown, we would mention which of these two fighters is favored on the money line according to the oddsmakers, but no such information has been made available at press time.

If you plan on betting on this or any other fight happening this weekend, please wager responsibly.

Taylor Mauldin Coming Into A1 Combat 10 Co-Main Event After 10-Month Layoff

Taylor Mauldin enters the A1 Combat 10 co-main event having yet to lose thus far in her professional career. Dating back to amateur competitions, she’s won four consecutive fights inside an MMA cage.

Last time out, she scored a unanimous decision victory against Macy Breaux (3-1 MMA) on June 26, 2022, during Fury FC 65 on UFC Fight Pass. After her win, Mauldin was interviewed backstage, admitting disappointment in the fact that she couldn’t end the fight on her terms.

“It was pretty hard because I wanted to finish,” Mauldin said. “I knew I could have finished that fight, so that was like a little frustrating, but it is what it is. I got the win.”

What else has to be frustrating is that Taylor Mauldin hasn’t been in action with regularity in recent times. As previously mentioned, the A1 Combat 10 co-main event is slated to be her third scheduled fight in the last month.

Initially, Mauldin was scheduled to face Kathy Solorzano (1-2 MMA) in Fury FC 76 on March 24, but this fight was canceled. Subsequently, this pairing was rebooked to take place this weekend in A1 Combat 10, only to be called off a second time.

How much ring rust does Mauldin have, and how has the change in opponent affected her training camp? Tune in on Friday to find out.

Laura Gallardo Looking to Get Back in the Win Column

In the other corner, Laura Gallardo has gone 4-1 in her last five professional fights. Her name is already familiar to viewers of The Ultimate Fighter television series, as she appeared on the program just last year.

Most recently, however, she sustained a unanimous decision defeat to Fatima Kline (4-0 MMA, 4-0 Invicta FC) during Invicta FC 51 on Jan. 18 in Denver, snapping a four-fight winning streak across professional contests.

Gallardo’s stint on TUF saw her enter the competition after Chantel Coates was unable to make the flyweight nontitle maximum ahead of the quarterfinal round. She discussed this with ESPN‘s Charly Arnolt (formerly Charly Caruso on WWE programming) last year.

“When they told me I wasn’t going to make the show, I went back with my manager, my coaches, and we just tried to fight another fight,” Gallardo said. “So, I had been training, like I didn’t go back and stop training. I never stop training, so, I was a little nervous just because I didn’t know many of the girls on the show, but I was for it.”

She’s already had one shot at a UFC deal, but with A1 Combat streaming on Fight Pass, can Gallardo get back in Dana White’s good graces with a victory on Friday night?

Analysis, Film Study, and Prediction

The A1 Combat 10 co-main event looks to favor Laura Gallardo, a wrestler, compared to Taylor Mauldin’s background as a karate fighter.

Look For a Vicious Submission by Mauldin

Once Taylor Mauldin gets her opponent on the ground, it could be a wrap for the fight, as it was when she fought Ambar de la Herran a couple of years ago. During the first round of a scheduled three, Mauldin scored with kicks to force a takedown of de la Herran.

It was all Mauldin, all the time for as long as the fight lasted. She landed ground and pound shots to soften de la Herran up for the eventual submission, applying the torque to lock in a kneebar in just 90 seconds.

Taylor Mauldin needs just one takedown to walk away as the champion in the A1 Combat 10 co-main event. Only time will tell if she gets it.

Gallardo Needs to Advance on Takedowns

Laura Gallardo’s wrestling background could serve her well if she can take Mauldin down and keep her there. This is something that proved problematic when she faced Trisha Cicero in Invicta FC 40 in July 2020.

Gallardo dumped Cicero three times during the first two rounds, yet couldn’t create much from them. Just taking a fighter down isn’t enough, especially when Taylor Mauldin is the other fighter in the corner on Friday.

By putting Mauldin down and grappling with her, it may turn the tide in Gallardo’s favor, but it all starts with taking her opponent down.

Final Thoughts

As someone who watches women’s MMA, the A1 Combat 10 co-main event looks to be a very appealing fight. Don’t miss it.

Prediction: Taylor Mauldin by Unanimous Decision.

Featured Image Credit: Getty Images

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