One of Squamish's premier mixed martial artists, Jamey-Lyn Horth Wessels, will defend her championship belt this December.
On Dec. 9, Horth Wessels will fight against Sabina Mazo in Legacy Fighting Alliance 148, at The Commerce Casino & Hotel in Commerce, Calif. They will be competing for the LFA Flyweight Championship.
The Squamish fighter will enter the cage match with an undefeated professional record of 5-0. Mazo has a professional record of 9-4.
This bout will be a significant one for both fighters.
In addition to having a title on the line, Horth Wessels said that since organizations like LFA are often feeders into the UFC, a win here could significantly increase her chances of making it to the premier league.
Mazo, on the other hand, has already been in the UFC. She made her debut in the league in 2019 and finished her last fight there this past spring. Her contract was not renewed. However, a dominant performance in the LFA could be a ticket back in.
Horth Wessels, 32, will be facing an opponent almost a decade younger than her with an extra three inches of reach.
"Obviously, I'll look at playing in the range game and standing up and striking and seeing what she has to offer," she said.
However, Horth Wessels said there are areas where she has the upper hand over her opponent.
"I'm a lot more athletic; I'm a lot more explosive than she is from what we've seen. And I'm a dog, so I don't mind. I'll go five rounds; I'll grind that out. And I know that my conditioning and my strength will take me all through those rounds if need be," she said.
"Our game plan, as of right now, is to just go in there and see what she has to offer with striking. And if we don't like it, then we'll just clinch and put her up against the cage and just grind her out."
She said her training program has been vigorou
Strength and conditioning have been a big focus for her, especially since she's been working with local coach Jesse Bifano, who was the strength trainer for the winner of 2021's CrossFit Games in Madison.
Having that kind of training has put her fitness to a new level, she said.
Strength and conditioning can be a big equalizer when facing an opponent with better technical skill.
"I feel like as an athlete I can outwork people that way," said Horth Wessles. "Where I may have an issue in a technical aspect, I may be able to outwork you in an athletic aspect. That, to me, is a huge aspect in my training."
In addition, the Squamish fighter drives to the city twice a week to work on her striking. She also has a sparring regimen. And, at her home base at The Sound MMA, she has endless partners to help her hone her grappling game.
She's also been keen to learn new skills.
Since her last fight camp, she started working with a new striking coach out of World Kickboxing XTRM in Surrey.
"I've really focused…on my punches and have become a way more powerful puncher," she said.
"You always look to add tools to the belt."
As the fight draws closer, she said the pressure is on, but that's the nature of the game.
"If there wasn't, then I wouldn't be doing it for the right reasons," Horth Wessels said. "Get ready to cheer."
The fight streams live on ufcfightpass.com