Selina Barrios Wins the Battle of Undefeated Fighters by Decision over Paty Juarez
By David A. Avila
San Antonio’s Selina “Aztec Queen” Barrios powered through the taller Paty Juarez to win by unanimous decision in a tight struggle in defense of the NABF lightweight title on Saturday.
Barrios (5-0) showed the crowd at Whataburger Field in Corpus Christi, Texas that in a battle of undefeated fighters with Colorado’s Juarez (4-1) she could figure out ingredients needed to progress to the next level.
When the fight ignited Juarez used her height and reach effectively to keep Barrios at a distance with jabs and long rights. Though Barrios landed it seemed that Juarez was in a comfort zone as long as there was distance between them. Not many punches were exchanged.
That changed in the second round.
Maybe the easiness of the first round gave a sense of security for both fighters because in the second the two fought toe-to-toe and inside fighting sprouted like wildfire. In the close distance Barrios connected with overhand rights as Juarez entered her firing zone. Juarez kept firing but though both landed it was Barrios doing the damage.
“I hit her with a lot of power shots and she hung in there,” said Barrios who fights out of San Antonio, Texas. “I didn’t feel any power in her punches, so I kept coming forward.”
For three rounds those overhand rights were damaging and kept Barrios ahead on the scorecards.
Juarez, who is the middle sister of Mexico’s famed boxing queens Mariana “Barby” Juarez and Lourdes “La Pequena Lulu” Juarez, made an adjustment in the fifth round by slowing the pace and returning to distance. Long jabs and long rights and maintaining distance kept Barrios overhand rights from being effective.
The tide had shifted.
For the next four rounds the two fighters engaged in a sort of chess game with Barrios realizing the overhand rights were no longer effective. Juarez realized fighting inside was not to her benefit. Her best round was in the seventh when she connected with a solid right and left hook. It wasn’t enough to hurt Barrios but enough to show that she was still in the fight.
Barrios regained complete control in the eighth round and connected solidly with a four-punch combination that sent Juarez back a few steps. After that burst Barrios remained in control though Juarez never stopped firing.
“Truthfully, I wasn’t ready for her head butts and it was a difficult fight,” said Juarez. “I focused so much on her head that my attention was distracted from we had planned to do.”
After 10 rounds three judges saw it 100-90, and 99-91 twice for Barrios. ThePrizefighters.com saw it 96-94 for Barrios who retains the NABF lightweight title and is gunning for more.
“I felt I controlled the fight from the opening bell,” said Barrios. “Juarez was a very tough opponent and I give her a lot of credit for going the distance.”
Now with two victorious defenses of the title Barrios is looking for more.
“I got the victory and I’m ready to fight any of the champions at lightweight. Katie Taylor, Mikaela Mayer and Amanda Serrano, I’m coming for you guys. You can run, but you can’t hide.”
(Photo by Roberto Elizondo)