Selina Barrios Captures NABF Title by Majority Decision
By David A. Avila
Selina Barrios scrapped by Lisa Porter in a back and forth battle for the vacant NABF lightweight title to gain a majority decision victory on Friday night.
“I wanted to come out tonight and show the world that I’m elite when I step in the ring. I knew fighting a hungry boxer like Lisa Porter wasn’t going to be easy,” Barrios said.
Despite a lack of experience of fighting more than four rounds Barrios (3-0) and Porter (1-1-1) survived 10 rounds at the Rapides Parish Coliseum in Alexandria, Louisiana. San Antonio’s Barrios got the nod.
Before stepping in the boxing ring neither California’s Porter or Barrios of Texas had more than two pro fights, but despite the journey into the unknown, the two former national amateur stars were willing to try the extended distance, especially if a title was the prize.
Barrios opened the fight at the faster tempo as she used her pressure style to close the distance against Porter’s long jab. The Texan charged forward at every opportunity firing rapid combinations to the body and head.
“I had to control the action from the first bell, and dictated my game plan, just like my trainer Rick and I discussed,” said Barrios, 24.
Porter seemed comfortable fighting at a distance using her left jab as a probe and weapon and firing the right when the opportunity presented itself. The Californian’s tempo was slightly slower and more deliberate.
Early on Barrios was able to maneuver inside while firing combinations. Porter seemed uncomfortable fighting inside and held the charging fighter whenever possible to nullify her punching. It proved to be the recipe for the remainder of the fight.
Around the fourth round Porter began timing the charges of Barrios and landing more telling blows. Though they punches were landing cleaner Barrios continued the attack and increased the tempo and fired even more combinations despite the increase in holding.
Barrios seemed to fight a good rhythm in the sixth and seventh round in her faster tempo as she landed blows to the body and head. Porter seemed to be rely on single counters that landed, but not enough to offset the combination punching of Barrios.
In the eighth round Porter seemed to be able to keep her distance and use the jab and right to greater effectiveness. Barrios seemed a little slower and her punch output was slowing down. Porter took advantage of the slower pace and scored well and was able to slip punches effectively.
Porter seemed to find a comfort zone and though Barrios was not able to maintain her tempo from the earlier rounds, she still was punching. A strong counter right by Porter connected soundly but not enough to hurt Barrios.
In the final round both came out punching. Porter was looking to keep the fight at a distance and Barrios was seeking to fight inside. Both landed punches but Barrios seemed to find a second wind. Each tried to close out the round on top and kept punching until the final bell rang.
The close scores reflected the fight as one judge scored it a draw at 95-95 while two others saw it 96-94 and 97-93 for Barrios who won the NABF lightweight title by majority decision.
“Lisa Porter is a class act and I’m thankful to her for taking this fight,” said Barrios. “Now that I’m the new NABF lightweight champion, I’m looking to step in the ring with anyone. Bring on all the champions.”
(Photo by Robert Elizondo)