PHILADELPHIA (Feb. 10, 2018) – Undefeated super featherweight Alycia Baumgardner (5-0, 4 KOs) piled up four convincing wins in 2017, with none of the fights reaching the second round, and with each stoppage coming in significantly less time than the previous bout. A bit abnormal as a fighter progresses.
The Fremont, Ohio native further advanced her young boxing career by traveling to Norway to work undisputed welterweight champion Cecilia Brækus’ training camp ahead of her late-October rematch with Mikaela Lauren. Shortly after returning home she announced a deal was finalized with Evander Holyfield’s The Real Deal Boxing Promotions to become the outfit’s first female boxer on its roster.
The outlook for 2018 was bright.
Saturday night at Philadelphia’s 2300 Arena, Baumgardner entered the ring to face seasoned opponent Nydia Feliciano (9-10-3) as part of Hard Hitting Promotions’ hometown event featuring Henry “Hammerin’ Hank” Lundy vs DeMarcus Corley in the main event. On the line was the vacant WBC International super featherweight title.
Baumgardner is a 23-year old fighter with over 150 amateur bouts, solid power, always looks fit and boasts of a multi-sport athletic background that includes track and wrestling. She also benefits greatly from the experience of well-traveled trainer Jonathan Banks in her corner. The expectation going into the fight was that Feliciano would definitely push the fight into, and likely beyond, the second round; the Bronx, New York based fighter would also fully introduce Baumgardner to the level of power in women’s boxing.
Baumgardner wasted little time looking like a newcomer.
Baumgardner laced Feliciano with a barrage of punishing shots as soon as the first bell rang. The veteran Feliciano was briefly overwhelmed with the Ohioan’s early outburst, and around 1:00 her reddened face began to display the effectiveness of Baumgardner’s fluid punching attack. Baumgardner remained poised following her early success. She looked neither surprised nor disappointed as Feliciano weathered her early combinations, quickly regrouped, and returned some good shots to close the first round.
Feliciano continued her attempt to press Baumgardner who fought fell backing up and circling to her left throughout the fight. In spots Feliciano connected with some left hands as Baumgardner either left her right glove low, or occasionally left it extended too long using it as a poking jab to disrupt the oncoming veteran. However, Baumgardner consistently landed the heavier shots throughout the fight, and gradually slowed down Feliciano with a punishing body attack.
Feliciano found success with a few lunging rights in the middle rounds, catching Baumgardner before she fully moved out of range. In some instances Baumgardner timed her opponent’s lunges, and connected with some thudding hooks or a beautiful right uppercut that closed out the seventh round.
Baumgardner maintained her composure into the eighth round and her steady punch out dispelled any notion that she would be susceptible to a full-on attack from Feliciano in the bout’s final two minutes. In fact, to secure her first title, Baumgardner crashed Feliciano’s body with a series of hooks from both hands to underscore her commanding performance.
The new champion was even surprisingly reserved in winning her first title as the cards made her champion status official with scores of 80-72 and 79-73 twice.
After her resounding win Baumgardner reflected on her performance stating, “It was an 8 for me. This was a great fight for me because she was experienced.”
“I feel accomplished but ready to be back in the gym working on being better than I was.”
On going the distance, remarkably well for the first time, Baumgardner said, “It happens sometimes as far as going the distance. Tough opponent. Great fight!”
Tentatively, Baumgardner is scheduled to face an opponent Friday, February 23 in Warren, Michigan at the DeCarlo’s Convention Center on a card being organized by Second 2 None Promotions.
In last night’s main event Lundy moved to 29-6-1 with 14 KOs, knocking Corley down in round four, and then going on to win by unanimous decision. Two cards were 79-72, with a third one scored 78-73 in favor of Lundy.