Erin Toughill

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Erin Toughill
Born (1977-06-13) June 13, 1977 (age 41)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Other namesSteel
Height5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight160 lb (73 kg)
Reach72 in (180 cm)
StyleBrazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Boxing
Fighting out ofLas Vegas, Nevada
TeamElite Training Center, CSW, HB Ultimate, Xtreme Couture
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout4
By submission1
By decision5
By submission1
By decision1
By disqualification1
Other information
Boxing record from BoxRec
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Erin Young Toughill (born June 13, 1977) is a retired mixed martial artist and former boxer and American Gladiator.

She began kickboxing at the age of 18 and started training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu soon after.

Under the watch of her LA Boxing trainer Sean McCully, Toughill debuted in mixed martial arts on September 27, 1999 and fought to a draw with Irma Verhoeff at World Vale Tudo Championship 9 in Aruba.

Less than a year later, she made her professional boxing debut on July 20, 2000.

Along with her MMA career, Toughill holds a professional boxing record of 7 wins, 3 losses, 1 draw and 1 no contest.

She counts IBF Super Middleweight contender Librado Andrade, a long-time sparring partner, among her close friends.

Boxing career[edit]

Toughill has only one lost before losing her battle against Laila Ali. Her final boxing match was against Laura Ramsey, whom she defeated previously. Toughill's father died three days before her rematch to Laura Ramsey. Toughill lost the fight by TKO in the first round and retired soon after with a record of 7-3-1, 1 NC.

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

After going 1-1-1 in her first three bouts, Toughill won five straight fights before losing in the finals of the 2004 Smackgirl World ReMix Tournament to Megumi Yabushita. She competed once more and scored a TKO victory over Jen Case in 2006.

In 2007, Toughill retired from both boxing and MMA.[1] Toughill came out of retirement from MMA and fought Jan Finney on November 20, 2008 at Palace Fighting Championships 11. Despite cutting over 20 pounds (9.1 kg) to make the contracted weight limit, Toughill was victorious and later went on to defeat Karen Williams and Emily Thompson in subsequent events for PFC after a fight with Adrienna Jenkins was cancelled due to injury.[2]


Toughill was set to make her Strikeforce debut on November 7, 2009 at Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Rogers in a rematch with Marloes Coenen, whom Toughill defeated in 2004.[3][4] However, she later withdrew from the fight due to an undisclosed medical condition.[5][6]

On March 18, 2010, Toughill announced that she was planning to leave Strikeforce. She had been scheduled to compete on the undercard of Strikeforce: Nashville on April 17.[7] However, in a second posting on April 9, 2010, Toughill attributed the disagreements with Strikeforce to misunderstandings and stated that she would be staying with the promotion.[8]

Toughill was scheduled to face Shana Olsen at Strikeforce: Houston on August 21, 2010, but the fight was cancelled due to concerns over Toughill's ability to make weight.[9] According to Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker, Toughill's next fight will not take place in Strikeforce, but she remains a part of the promotion's roster.[10]

Toughill was offered to face Cristiane Santos for a bout in 2010, but the fight never came into fruition.[11]

Post Strikeforce[edit]

Toughill was scheduled to compete outside of Strikeforce against China's Bao Yu Dan at Martial Combat 9 on September 15, 2010 in Singapore.[12] However, on September 13, Toughill withdrew from the fight after citing a broken clavicle.[13]

Toughill returned to active competition after nearly two years at Freestyle Cage Fighting 46 on April 9, 2011. The fight was against Ashley Sanchez at a 160 lb (73 kg) catchweight (per Toughill's request). Toughill lost the fight via unanimous decision.[14]

Toughill agreed to face Anna Barone at BlackEye Promotions 5 on October 1, 2011 in Fletcher, North Carolina,[15] but withdrew from the fight after suffering a rib injury in training.[16]

American Gladiators[edit]

Toughill became a cast member of NBC's primetime series, the American Gladiators, where she became known as Steel.

Personal life[edit]

Erin married Neil Melanson, a grappling coach and lead Jiu-Jitsu instructor at Xtreme Couture, in a private ceremony on November 20, 2009. Melanson also serves as the primary grappling coach for UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture, and has cornered Couture during several recent MMA fights.[17][18] The couple is currently going through a divorce.[19]

Toughill's younger sister, Megan, was killed in a car accident on September 19, 2004, which was about three weeks before her title fight with Yvonne Reis.[20]


Toughill was featured on MSNBC's Warrior Nation as she prepared for a fight.[21]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 10-3-1 Ashley Sanchez Decision (unanimous) Freestyle Cage Fighting 46 April 9, 2011 3 5:00 Shawnee, Oklahoma, United States
Win 10-2-1 Emily Thompson Decision (unanimous) PFC 13: Validation May 8, 2009 3 3:00 Lemoore, California, United States
Win 9-2-1 Karen Williams TKO (punches) PFC: Best of Both Worlds February 6, 2009 1 2:06 Lemoore, California, United States
Win 8-2-1 Jan Finney Decision (unanimous) PFC 11: All In November 20, 2008 3 3:00 Lemoore, California, United States
Win 7-2-1 Jen Case TKO (punches) VF - Showdown at Cache Creek II September 15, 2006 2 2:22 Brooks, California, United States
Loss 6-2-1 Megumi Yabushita DQ (elbows) Smackgirl - World ReMix 2004 December 19, 2004 1 2:39 Shizuoka, Japan Open Weight Queen tournament finals.
Win 6-1-1 Marloes Coenen KO (punch) Smackgirl - World ReMix 2004 December 19, 2004 1 5:00 Shizuoka, Japan Open Weight Queen tournament semi-finals.
Win 5-1-1 Miwako Ishihara TKO (corner stoppage) Smackgirl - World ReMix 2004 December 19, 2004 1 0:27 Shizuoka, Japan Open Weight Queen tournament first round.
Win 4-1-1 Miwako Ishihara Decision (unanimous) Smackgirl - Dynamic September 1, 2002 3 5:00 Shizuoka, Japan
Win 3-1-1 Kaoru Ito Decision (unanimous) W - Fusion July 27, 2001 3 5:00 Tokyo, Japan
Win 2-1-1 Megumi Yabushita Technical Submission (armbar) ReMix - Golden Gate 2001 May 3, 2001 2 3:08 Japan
Loss 1-1-1 Svetlana Goundarenko Submission (scarf-hold armlock) ReMix - World Cup 2000 December 5, 2000 1 2:47 Japan Open Weight tournament semi-finals.
Win 1-0-1 Irina Rodina Decision (split) ReMix - World Cup 2000 December 5, 2000 2 5:00 Japan Open Weight tournament quarter-finals.
Draw 0-0-1 Irma Verhoeff Draw World Vale Tudo Championship 9 September 27, 1999 1 15:00 Aruba

Professional Boxing Record[edit]

Professional record summary
13 fights 7 wins 4 losses
By knockout 0 2
By decision 7 2
Draws 1
No contests 1
No. Result Record Opponent Method Round, time Date Location Notes
13 Loss 7–4-1 (1) United States Maricela Cornejo Decision (Unanimous) 8 (8) 2019-01-27 United States Aalon Hollywood, Hollywood, California, United States
12 Loss 7–3-1 (1) United States Laura Ramsey TKO 1 (6), 1:28 2006-08-31 United States Harveys Lake Tahoe, Stateline, Nevada, United States The fight was called after Toughill fell through ropes
11 Win 7–2-1 (1) United States Laura Ramsey Decision (Unanimous) 6 (6) 2006-01-27 United States The Palladium, Hollywood, California, United States
10 Loss 6–2-1 (1) United States Laila Ali TKO 3 (10), 1:54 2005-06-11 United States MCI Center, Washington, DC, United States
9 Win 6–1-1 (1) United States Yvonne Reis Decision (Unanimous) 10 (10) 2004-10-22 United States Municipal Auditorium, Sarasota, Florida, United States
8 Win 5–1-1 (1) United States Cassandra Giger Decision (Unanimous) 8 (8) 2004-07-31 United States Sam's Town Casino, Tunica, Mississippi, United States
7 Win 4–1-1 (1) United States Kuulei Kupihea Decision (Unanimous) 4 (4) 2003-11-14 United States Quiet Cannon, Montebello, California, United States
6 Win 3–1-1 (1) United States Nicole Conant Decision (Unanimous) 4 (4) 2003-07-24 United States Oxnard Performing Arts Center, Oxnard, California, United States
5 NC 2–1-1 (1) United States Jackie Frazier-Lyde PTS 3 (8) 2002-06-04 United States The Temple Corps, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States For WIBF Inter-Continental Super Middleweight Title. Fight was ruled a "no-contest" when a cut from an accidental head-butt stopped the bout. Toughhill cut on forehead.
4 Draw 2–1-1 United States Dakota Stone PTS 4 (4) 2001-12-06 United States Palace Indian Gaming Center, Lemoore, California, United States
3 Win 2–1 United States Veronica Sanchez Decision (Majority) 4 (4) 2000-10-07 United States Centennial Garden Arena, Bakersfield, California, United States
2 Win 1–1 United States Correena Grizoffi Decision (unanimous) 4(4) 2000-08-26 United States Selland Arena, Fresno, California, United States
1 Loss 0–1 Germany Elizabeth Rumpf Decision (unanimous) 4 (4) 2000-07-20 United States Marriott Hotel, Irvine, California, United States


  • Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under James Boran
  • 2001 ReMix Golden Gate Japan Champion
  • W-Fusion 2001 Japan Champion


  1. ^ "Official Site of Erin Toughill".
  2. ^ "Erin Toughill vs. Adrienna Jenkins set for PFC event in February". Archived from the original on 2009-07-03. Retrieved 2009-01-03.
  3. ^ "Toughill vs Coenen For Strikeforce On CBS". Archived from the original on 2009-10-12. Retrieved 2009-10-10.
  4. ^ "Coenen vs Toughill 2 Set For November 7th". Retrieved 2009-10-10.
  5. ^ "Erin Toughill Out Of Fight With Marloes Coenen". Retrieved 2009-10-28.
  6. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: TOUGHILL SAYS IT'S NOT A WEIGHT ISSUE". 2009-10-29. Archived from the original on 2009-11-02. Retrieved 2010-07-05.
  7. ^ "Toughill Announces Plans To Leave Strikeforce". Retrieved 2010-03-18.
  8. ^ "Erin Toughill Now Plans To Stay With Strikeforce". Retrieved 2010-04-09.
  9. ^ "Toughill Struggles With Weight Cut, Fight In Limbo". Retrieved 2010-07-21.
  10. ^ "Erin Toughill's Next Fight Likely Not In Strikeforce". Retrieved 2010-07-28.
  11. ^ "Cyborg Santos – Erin Toughill Title Fight Looks Increasingly Unlikely". Retrieved 2011-07-12.
  12. ^ "Erin Toughill Now Set To Fight In Singapore". Retrieved 2010-08-14.
  13. ^ "Erin Toughill Withdraws From Fight In Singapore". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  14. ^ "Weekend Recap: Erin Toughill Upset In FCF 46 Return". 2011-04-11. Retrieved 2011-04-16.
  15. ^ "Six Women's Bouts Now Set For BlackEye Promotions 5". 2011-08-08. Retrieved 2011-08-12.
  16. ^ "More Women's Bouts Added To BlackEye Promotions 5". 2011-09-15. Retrieved 2011-09-15.
  17. ^ "Just Married: Neil Melanson and Erin Toughill Tie The Knot". 2009-11-20. Retrieved 2009-11-21.
  18. ^ "Erin Toughill Interview". 2009-12-26. Retrieved 2009-12-31.
  19. ^ "Erin Toughill Discusses Her Marriage Split, Gina Carano & Illness Before Her Last Fight". 2011-05-17. Archived from the original on 2011-08-11. Retrieved 2011-05-17.
  20. ^ "Condolences to the Toughill Family." 2004-09-24. Retrieved 2010-10-02.
  21. ^ "MSNBC's "Warrior Nation" Debuts Tonight". 2007-01-09. Archived from the original on 2010-09-03. Retrieved 2010-05-05.

External links[edit]