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Tsagouris Wins
by Decision in Rhode Island

WBAN Correspondent

August 23, 2008

(AUG 23)  LINCOLN, R.I.---Sandy Tsagouris vividly remembers the venue of her last fight, the peculiarly dubbed KoenigPlast arena, situated in a corner of Germany, known as Nordrhein-Westfalen. Tsagouris, unbeaten at the time, endured her toughest night of her four-year career, untimely dropping a controversial ten round decision to unbeaten German Ina Menzer for the WIBF featherweight title as well as the vacant WBC Female featherweight championship.

Last night however, Tsagouris, a 27 year old Toronto, Ontario native returned to the square for the first time since her emotional loss last March, and this time the venue as well as the final result was decidedly more to her liking.

Tsagouris, the latest stable acquisition of Rhode Island promoter Jimmy Burchfield, and her opponent former 2007 Pan American Games champion Adawirky Lopez thoroughly entertained the crowd at the northern Rhode Island, Twin Rivers Events Center, in a six round featherweight bout that Tsagouris won in a 58-55. 58-55, 58-55 unanimous decision. Tsagouris improved to 8-1 (3KO) with the victory, Lopez dropped to 1-1.

"I lost my last pro fight so I didn't know what to expect," said Tsagouris following the win. "She was a real tough opponent. I didn't know what to expect out of her. She only had one pro fight but a lot of amateur experience. In this situation you don't know what she's going to come out with, really, you don't know what anyone is going to come out with."

Tsagouris hit the scales at 128 for her latest outing, while Lopez, a Dominican Republic native who currently boxes out of Tampa, Florida weighted in at 126.

At the outset of the fight, Tsagouris, of Greek descent displayed the power and killer instinct that earned her the tag of "Lil Tyson" in her go-around with Lopez. Just a dozen seconds into the fight, Tsagouris connected with a short, quick right that briefly stunned Lopez, moving her back a step. But Lopez, with more than 50 amateur outings to her credit responded well in the middle rounds. As evidenced- In the third, Lopez rocked Tsagouris with a hard right hook. And although Tsagouris scored by going to the body in the latter rounds but her defensive acumen lacked the sharpness that she displayed in the beginning of the match-up. Still, Lopez who increased her rate of aggressiveness as the bout progressed fell into the syndrome of 'a little too late.'

"I wanted to come out very strong," said Tsagouris who admitted to using the Menzer result as motivation heading into her latest bout. "Training's been up and down for us. I didn't know what to expect. I had a few obstacles in my way, it was tough, but I came out with the win which I'm happy for."

"It's tough coming back from a loss like that," said Tsagouris's trainer, Billy Martin. "We had a lot of up and downs during our training (leading up to the fight). She had a chest infection a while back-I'm not making any excuses, she's a tough bird, but it did set her back mentally but I thought she performed pretty well for not having fought since March and taking a couple of fights off."

A head but in the fourth round produced a small gash to Tsagouris's left eye- a gash that ultimately required a few sutures. The result of which left Tsagouris's September 27 scheduled fight with Maria-Jose Nunez at the Powerade Center in Brampton, Ontario up for grabs. 'We have to see about the cut though," said Tsagouris.

"She did her thing and it was important that we got the win," Martin said.

Fellow Canadian and World Champion Jamie Clampitt worked the corner for Tsagouris. "Actually Jimmy saw me fight against the World Champion (Menzer) and she beat me on a controversial decision. He thought I did a good job and wanted to bring me in. I chose to go with him and CES, and I'm real happy to fight here."

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