Two people with knowledge of the situation informed MMA Junkie that Penne (14-6 MMA, 3-4 UFC) and Ricci (7-1 MMA, 2-1 UFC) will meet March 4 at an event expected to be UFC 285 from a location to be determined. The people requested anonymity since the promotion has yet to make an announcement.
Penne, 39, is a former UFC strawweight title contender coming off a unanimous decision loss to Emily Ducote in her only fight of 2022. Prior to that, Penne was on a two-fight winning streak – against Karolina Kowalkiewicz and Loopy Godinez – as she returned from a nearly four-year layoff.
Ricci, 27, is just nine fights into her professional career with three UFC appearances. She lost her promotional debut by second-round TKO to Manon Fiorot but has since rebounded with back-to-back unanimous decision wins over Maria Oliveira and most recently Polyana Viana this past May in her only fight of the year.