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15-year-old boxing for national championship

Sharahya Moreu, left, works with her father, Yoruba, during an outdoor training session. Sharahya is one of seven New Mexico boxers fighting this week at Junior Olympics nationals in Charleston, W. Va. (Courtesy of Yoruba Moreu)

Sharahya Moreu, left, works with her father, Yoruba, during an outdoor training session. Sharahya is one of seven New Mexico boxers fighting this week at Junior Olympics nationals in Charleston, W. Va. (Courtesy of Yoruba Moreu)

Sharahya Moreu, a 15-year-old amateur boxer, was asked whether she had a role model. Fellow Albuquerquean Holly Holm, perhaps? Laila Ali?

No, she replied.

“I’m trying to be my own role model,” she said. “I want to do something different than other people.”

Being a boxer, though, isn’t different enough. Moreu also plays basketball and runs cross-country and track at Highland High School, all the while planning to become a professional boxer – but planning at the same time for a college education.

“I want to get an education,” she said, “and not be one of those people who turn pro and don’t have anything to back it up. I want to get an education and not just rely on boxing, and be able to do something after my career, too.”

Moreu is one of seven New Mexico boxers who will compete starting today in the USA Boxing Junior Olympic National Championships in Charleston, W.Va.

She likes to be a little different in the ring, as well.

MOREU: Highland student wants to be pro boxer (Courtesy of Yoruba Moreu)

MOREU: Highland student wants to be pro boxer (Courtesy of Yoruba Moreu)

“I’m aggressive,” said Moreu, who said her record is 16-6. “I come at you. But I like to have fun and throw some flashy moves in there. … Just some little different things people don’t see all the time from the girls.”

Moreu’s interest in boxing was fostered by her father, Yoruba Moreu, who never boxed competitively but has trained and sparred with boxers – Frankie Archuleta, Raymond “Hollewood” Montes, Yordan Perez – at Albuquerque’s Jack Candelaria Community Center.

“(Sharahya) was coming to the gym and watched me do my work,” he said, “and she picked it up from there.”

She’ll fight in Charleston at 145 pounds. One of her New Mexico teammates, 154-pounder Jordanne Garcia, will be defending her 2013 national Junior Olympic title.

FIGHT NIGHT: The New Mexico Athletic Commission has scheduled a special meeting Monday to consider two issues arising from Saturday’s “UFC Fight Night” card at Tingley Coliseum: fighter Ross Pearson’s appeal of his loss by controversial decision to Albuquerque’s Diego Sanchez, and fighter Jason High’s shoving of a referee.

The split decision giving Sanchez a victory over Pearson has been almost universally described as a robbery. But, in acknowledging Pearson’s appeal, the commission also acknowledged its rules don’t permit it to reverse or set aside a decision simply because it is deemed a bad one.

According to its rules, the commission can reverse or set aside a decision only if:

  • There was collusion affecting the outcome;
  • There was a scoring error;
  • A rule was violated, affecting the result of the bout.

UFC President Dana White on Tuesday joined the chorus of disapproval for the Sanchez-Pearson decision.

“It’s insanity, man,” White told ESPN.com. “Pearson got robbed.”

White said the UFC would not consider a rematch but would proceed with Pearson’s career as if he had won Saturday’s fight.

Later, on UFC.com, White said Pearson would be awarded the extra $30,000 he would have earned had he been given the decision.

After High’s loss by TKO to Rafael Dos Anjos, High – angry because he felt the stoppage was premature – shoved referee Kevin Mulhall.

High will be invited to appear before the commission, either in person or by teleconference. He faces a possible fine, suspension or both.

Later Tuesday, White said the UFC would release High from his contract.

Regarding another dispute stemming from “UFC Fight Night,” chairman Tom King during Tuesday’s regular NMAC meeting said he wanted to clarify the events leading to flyweight John Moraga’s loss by TKO to Albuquerque’s John Dodson.

It was announced after the card that Moraga had suffered a broken nose, prompting the stoppage, after the Phoenix fighter took a knee to the face. Moraga later tweeted that his nose was not broken, that his profuse bleeding had dissipated moments later and that the fight should not have been stopped.

King, however, said the fight was stopped after the second round because Moraga repeatedly said he could not breathe.

“(Moraga’s cornerman) asked for an extra minute between rounds,” King said, “which obviously can’t happen. I want to get that on the record.”




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