Sharkie’s Machine: Women Warriors Worth Watching

13.07.05 – By Frank Gonzalez Jr.: Tuesday evening at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles, California, young Cristal Morales of Oxnard California, debuted in her first televised fight. Her record consisted of a lone Draw. 0-0-1. She had a tight frame at 128-pounds. Her trunks were loose fitting. This was a hungry fighter lucky for the chance..

Rita Valentini of Los Angeles is 34 years old and sports a newbie record of 5-3-0-3 KO’s. Her trunks snuggly revealed a strong athletic body though she was old enough to have been the mother of her 18-year-old opponent. Both were physically fit and both were more than just pretty faces as they demonstrated disciplined boxing skills when the fight started.

The thing about women’s boxing is that regardless of conventions and socially designated roles, some women were born to fight. If they develop quality skills, I say, “Let them fight!” And the ones that train hard and earn their way deserve their place in the spotlight.

Rita Valentini vs. Cristal Morales was a fine example of good match making as they put on a noteworthy performance.

Round One
They boxed aggressively but carefully. On occasion, they would collide at center ring and exchange a flurry of punches that had the emotion of two battering Rams. Both scored in turns. Valentini was noticeably more experienced and was able to clinch and force Morales to reset. Sometimes, Rita’s clinches were a little dirty. Not in a sloppy way though. Morales scored at a higher percentage but it was a very close round. I called it
even, 10-10.

Round Two
Valentini blasted Morales aggressively, punching and blocking many of the counters that came back. Morales moved well for someone in only her second pro fight. She used her jab, moved in with combinations and then darted back outside of harm’s way. Valentini effectively smothered her efforts with constant offense. Both showed a lot of heart and discipline. Valentini landed the cleaner punches. 10-9 Valentini.

Round Three
They slugged it out in the center ring. People were on their feet. There weren’t really enough chairs for the meandering audience but if there were enough chairs, they’d have been on their feet anyway. Strategy dictated that Valentini be relentless because it was only a four round fight. She had to win rounds convincingly because its typical to think a four rounder would most benefit the younger fighter. Valentini landed a big right hand that knocked Morales into the ropes. Morales is tough. She came back with a storm of punches and was pressing her weight onto Valentini, getting inside and throwing body shots and keeping her composure, while trying to step up the aggression. Valentini often neutralized her efforts with well-timed clinches, though the referee warned her more than once for holding and hitting. It was a very competitive round. Valentini had the edge in effective aggression. 10-9 Valentini.

Round Four
Morales aggressively charged Valentini, but it was Rita, who scored the cleaner punches when Cristal got too close. Valentini was warned again for holding and hitting. Morales landed some good combos but Valentini matched her pace and kept it too hard to score. 10-10 even.

After the final bell, both looked confident that they’d won. Morales smiled girlishly hopeful at her corner then quickly sobered up and listened carefully as the scores were read. It was 39-37 twice and 40-36. And the winner was-Rita Valentini by UD.

I had it 40-38 for Valentini, who improved her record to 6-3.

I’d watch either of these two ladies fight again. For Morales, she has heart, decent boxing skills and lots of potential to improve dramatically. I don’t know how good the 125-pound weight class in Women’s boxing is but Cristal Morales has contender written all over her. Valentini was exceedingly impressive with her strategic aggression and come forward attitude. Her experience might have been the difference in this one. The fight was close enough to merit a rematch, preferably a six or eight rounder. I know I’d watch it. Rita Valentini and Cristal Morales gave the fans a good show and did Women’s boxing proud. I salute these two budding Woman Warriors.

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