Eddiva quit school for UFC stint

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Wednesday, March 12, 2014


CHOOSING a fruitful career rather than finishing his last two subjects in college was the biggest decision Mark Eddiva made.

And the decision to quit school paved the way for Eddiva's first and probably one of the biggest wins after debuting in the UFC several days ago in Macau earning a 30-27 decider over previously undefeated Jumabieke Tuerxun in UFC Fight Night 37.

"I was enrolled with my last two subjects but when coach Mark Sangiao told we got a contract with UFC, that was the time I decided I have to quit school so I can concentrate on my training," said Eddiva.

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The 28-year-old Sadanga, Mt. Province native added his decision was also influenced by his cousin Eduard Folayang and his Team Lakay teammates Kevin Belingon, Geje Eustaquio among others.

Eddiva is supposed to graduate in Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education major in English this May if he finishes his last two subjects including LET Review.

“I knew this was just a once in a lifetime chance for me now because if I choose my education there might no longer be an offer for me in the UFC,” Eddiva continued.

Eddiva is the second homegrown Filipino to be signed by UFC as he leaned on his solid striking game and takedown defenses to score a unanimous decision victory to achieve what his fellow Team Lakay teammate Dave Galera failed to do.

Galera, the first pure bred Filipino to see action in the UFC, lost to Royston Wee in his debut in UFC Fight Night 34 early in January this year in Singapore.

But it was not easy in training camp, according to Eddiva, who worked double time for the past two months.

“Being an underdog going into the fight, we disregarded all the comments, all the bad things and we just executed our game plan,” added Eddiva.

Despite his victory, Eddiva said he is not resting on his laurels as he needs to improve more of his skills in terms of striking and grappling after more than two years of absence in competitive combat sports.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on March 13, 2014.

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