clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Invicta FC 30’s Felicia Spencer says co-main slot is a dream come true

Undefeated featherweight Felicia Spencer spoke about her upcoming fight with Helena Kolesnyk at Invicta FC 30.

Scott Hirano, Invicta FC

Undefeated featherweight Felicia Spencer moved her pro record to 4-0 with an assured decision victory over Akeela Al-Hameed at Invicta FC 27 in January. Now, the Montreal-born but Florida-raised protege of Seth Petruzelli is due to face-off with Helena Kolesnyk at Invicta FC 30 this Saturday night.

The 27-year-old ‘FeeNom’ told Bloody Elbow that she was happy with winning against Al-Hameed six months ago, albeit a little let down by her inability to finish her pro-debuting opponent.

“I’m never really that happy about a decision,” said Spencer to Bloody Elbow. “I feel like she was a real tough opponent, so I give her credit for bringing it and bringing everything to the table, but I wish there was certain things I could’ve done, in hindsight. Maybe working from different places a little bit more efficiently. But overall I’m happy with the experience, and what it gave me to move forward. I’m excited to take what I learned.”

Spencer made her Invicta (and pro) debut in 2016 at Invicta FC 14. There she finished Rachel Wiley with punches and elbows. After a year long hiatus, she returned with two fights in 2017; a unanimous decision over Madison McElhaney and a RNC finish over Amy Coleman.

Even though her fifth fight in Invicta is fast-approaching, Spencer is still getting used to the idea of being an ‘established talent’ in the world’s premier female-only fight promotion.

“Well it’s still kind of surreal,” she said. “I mean, I watched the first Invicta and always thought that was the dream. It was the best platform for women at the time and I expected it to continue to be the best at the time.”

This Saturday, Spencer will be competing in the co-main event of Invicta FC 30. The high standing on the card is a literal dream come true.

“It’s kinda mind-blowing to be the co-main event – I had a dream about it actually, before it was announced. And I was like, ‘Oh my God. I’m actually the co-main event, this is crazy!’”

Spencer’s joy at being the co-main event is intensified for how much pride and respect she has for the Shannon Knapp led promotion.

“Ever since my first pro-fight with Invicta I was always impressed with how they took care of their fighters,” said Spencer.

“Everything I can say about Invicta is positive. I feel really lucky to be able to start my career with them, and it seems like they’re pretty happy with promoting me as well, so I can’t say enough good things about them.”

When Spencer is not fighting for Invicta, she’s teaching algebra. She works for the Florida Virtual School, teaching grades 6 through 12. It’s an online school that has her employed as “sort of a cross between a teacher and a guidance counselor.”

Despite not teaching in a physical classroom, Spencer said she has lots of interactions with students and their parents. She doesn’t keep the fact she’s a professional fighter a secret from anyone. So far, that’s not given her any hassle.

“I always try to present my fighting career as a positive thing,” said Spencer. “As a professional athlete you have that stigma, especially with fighting ... I’m trying to reach my goals and you have to have your mind in it and persevere through the hard times. That’s usually the message I’m trying to push. I haven’t had a lot of the students mention it, but I definitely have a handful that bring it up and we kind of laugh about it a little bit. But yeah, so far no negative interactions about it.”

Spencer’s next opportunity to teach a lesson through fighting comes at the Scottish Rite Temple in Kansas City, MO this Saturday. Meeting her there is Helena Kolesnyk (5-1), who was previously booked against Megan Anderson and Tonya Evinger, before UFC call-ups scrapped those fights.

In her Invicta debut, at Invicta FC 24 last July, Kolesnyk lost for the first time in her pro career. That defeat came at the hands of Pam Sorenson, who delivered an armbar finish in the first round.

“Well, I didn’t really know her very much before last summer when she fought with Invicta, but I’m not letting her last performance define her in my eyes,” said Spencer of her Ukrainian opponent. “She was undefeated before that, and it was a fairly quick showing, so I’m expecting the best and I’m excited to match up with her.”

“I feel like she’s probably stronger in the boxing area, but I feel like anything she can do I can do better. I’m confident I can input my game plan, or just take things where I want to take them. But I definitely am fully respecting her skill-set, and not letting that loss from last summer cloud my judgement of her at all.”

Even though she respects Kolesnyk’s game, Spencer said she was confident she would get a “strong finish” when they meet in the cage.

“Whether it be a TKO, or a submission, or a knockout, I really see that I can implement my game plan, and feel like this is another one of those fights where I can put it all together and finish in the first round.”

A win for Spencer could potentially lead her to a title shot for the Invicta featherweight crown (or a call up in the UFC, as it continues to develop its featherweight division). You can see if she’s up to the task by tuning into UFC Fight Pass this Saturday night. Invicta FC 30 begins at 8 PM ET.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bloody Elbow Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your MMA and UFC news from Bloody Elbow