Ringside Report by Jacob Chavez
Ocatvius James’ “One In a Million” Boxing promotions presented an action packed night of boxing this past Saturday at the Hammond Civic Center in Hammond, Indiana. The main event featured a spectacular match-up between local female fighters “Merciless” Mary McGee (17-0, 10 KOs) taking on Kristy “Rose” Follmar (16-2, 9 KOs) with the vacant WBC International and NABC Women’s World Lightweight titles at stake. In a very closely contested battle, McGee won the fight via a close majority decision however it could definitely be argued that the result could have been a draw or even a victory for Follmar. Either way, the two combatants put on a show of epic proportions that both won over the fans’ hearts and approval.
The crowd was split in regards to which fighter they supported. As the ladies entered the ring, the shouting and applause from the audience was deafening as the action got started right away.
Both fighters aggressively looked to establish a jab. Follmar displayed good footwork as she circled the ring and used her taller frame to keep the action at a good range. The crafty McGee demonstrated great skills in her aggression. She landed solid combinations while fighting on the inside which gave her the ability to cut-off the ring.
McGee continued to press the action in the second while she displayed better accuracy in her punching. Follmar was very game when trading with her opponent but often ate more punches than she connected with.
Follmar began to make adjustments in the third as she circled McGee more effectively and found a better rhythm with her punches. She also focused more on the jab, but McGee wisely stuck to her strategy. Midway into the round, she pounced on Follmar and lured her into trading power shots. Again, the fans went berserk as they came together for explosive exchanges.
McGee once more had a higher connect percentage as she shortened her punches, despite absorbing plenty of punishment herself. Follmar looked to step up the pace in the fourth by becoming more aggressive than in the previous rounds. She focused early on the body and scored with solid combinations. But McGee however did not back off as she successfully countered to the head of her opponent.
Round five would go to Follmar due to her steady and relentless pressure. This seemed to be taking somewhat of a toll on McGee as she slowed slightly. Round six also saw terrific trading with Follmar once again landing and moving, however McGee connected with the more effective punches.
Rounds eight and nine were extremely close. Follmar stuck to her guns with combinations on the outside. McGee continued to land with hard counters within close range.
The tenth and final round showed what makes certain fights special and keeps people talking for years to come. The grueling and debilitating exchanges from both fatigued women had fans on their feet throughout the stanza.
Both woman wanted the win and pushed for it. There was no more boxing or back peddling; it was all toe-to-toe trading.
In the end McGee let out a cry and fell to her knees in tears when announced as the winner, and like a true sportsman, Follmar applauded and congratulated her. The final scores read 97-93 twice and 95-95.
Ochoa KOs Hill!
Welterweight Ed Ochoa (8-0, 8 KOs) made quick work of journeyman Chris Hill (4-22-2, 2 KOs), knocking him out in less than one round.
He jumped on Hill right away and punished him with a series of body shots. Hill looked to cover-up his midsection but this only left an opening for a right to the head that dropped him hard and left him dazed on the canvas.
Referee Blake Allen had little choice but to stop the action at 2:10 of the opening stanza.
Waite Decisions Johnson!
Middleweight Orphius Waite (5-0, 3 KOs) had a tough outing against rugged Cedric Johnson (10-4, 8 KOs) in a six round contest. Waite earned the unanimous decision but not before finding himself in deep waters in the second round. He found a good opening for the left hook to the head early on, while Johnson too showed perseverance and attacked the midsection.
In was in the opening seconds of round two that Waite had to step back after taking numerous power shots to the body. Sensing his opponent was in trouble, Johnson tried to finish him off by pouncing on him and unloading. Waite wisely held on and managed to keep Johnson at bay with a hard jab.
In round four Waite charged out at Johnson and knocked him down with a left-right combination to the head. Stunned but not badly hurt, Johnson smiled at the referee and confirmed that he could continue.
There was good back and forth action for the remainder of the bout but Johnson began to fade and Waite simply looked for one big shot to end it all. All the judges score the fight the same, 58-55 for Waite.
Ortiz Stops Sule!
Making his pro debut, Ty Ortiz (1-0, 1 KO) of the “One In a Million” boxing team put the hurt on fellow heavyweight Justin Sule (1-1, 0 KOs) by taking him out in less than one round.
Ortiz showed sound skills and used his height. Sule had quicker hands and managed to connect several times to the head and body however the bigger Ortiz kept his wits and began using his height after the first minute of the fight.
A stiff jab set up a devastating combination to the head that floored Sule in the corner. Referee Kurt Spivey quickly halted the action. The time was 2:16.
Crouch Stops Parks!
Local super middleweight favorite Josh Crouch (4-0, 4 KOs) forced Jeremy Parks (0-10) to quit on his stool after two rounds of punishment.
Crouch was all over Parks from the start. He dropped him with a flurry to the head midway into the round.
Parks got up but only to eat more punishment in round two. This prompted the corner to stop the fight between rounds. The official time was :01 of round three.
Hernandez TKOs Palacios!
Welterweight Angel Hernandez (12-3, 10 KOs) destroyed Gustavo Palacios (2-5, 1 KO) in under one round.
The fast-handed Hernandez targeted Palacios’ head for the first minute of the fight. Palacios looked to keep his opponent at bay but found himself overwhelmed with incoming punches.
It was after a blinding flurry by Hernandez that rocked Palacios with a right cross which sent him to the canvas. He got up but was on very shaky legs. Referee Blake Allen wisely stopped the fight at 2:34.
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