Vernon’s Rylie Marchand, 17, (right) became the youngest Canadian woman to win the Canadian Amateur Mixed Martial Arts Championship with a second-round TKO of her opponent in Lethbridge. (Photo - submitted)

Rising Vernon MMA star wins Canadian amateur

Rylie Marchand, 17, nearly slept through first bout; recovered to win national championship

Vernon’s Rylie Marchand almost slept through her appearance at the Canadian Amateur Mixed Martial Arts Championships in Lethbridge.

Marchand, who trains at Vernon’s Unity MMA and Kickboxing, made the weigh-in for her first bout and was told there was going to be a late addition to the tournament. She went back to her hotel to rest as she thought she wouldn’t have to fight the day of the weigh-in.


Marchand had to fight in two hours, and had turned off her phone to have a nap.

READ ALSO: Vernon fighter wins MMA bout by TKO

“Some quick thinking from her dad as he called the hotel staff and they got a hold of her,” said Marchand’s coach, Raja Kler. “She was able to get herself ready for her fight.”

Boy, was she able to get ready.

Marchand used a leg hammer lock to defeat Jessica Pfiefle in 65 seconds, putting her into the final on Friday against Meghan Boyczuk.

With coach Kler and her family and friends cheering her on, Marchand, 17, became the youngest female Canadian MMA amateur champion with a second-round technical knock out (TKO). Marchand is 3-0.

“She has many options now available for her, including going to the Worlds or getting more title fights lined up,” said Kler. “She did Team Unity proud. She is a true warrior and a great representative for the club as well as her community.”

READ ALSO: Vernon’s Unity MMA fighters show heart

If you are interested in checking out where Rylie and the other competitors at Unity MMA and Kickboxing train, Kler is offering a free week to adults and kids to come train and see what the art is about.

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