Another year has gone by and it is time to have the "hot"
picks and "not" picks for  the year 2003! There were definitely
the GOOD, the BAD, and the NOT so good this year 
in women's boxing! WBAN ran a survey for BOXING FANS to have the FLOOR on this year's awards!


Fighter of the Year
Kelsey "Road Warrior" Jeffries

There is no doubt why Kelsey Jeffries has been named WBAN's 2003 Fighter of the year.  Jeffries has had eight fights, winning 7 out of the 8, with her only loss this year to Jo Jo Wyman, who she also defeated this year.  She took on some very tough opposition, including defending her IFBA Featherweight World title belt twice.  Runner-Ups: Ann "Brown Sugar" Wolfe, Isra Girgrah, Laila Ali  Honorable Mentioned:  Sunshine Fettkether, Layla McCarter, Ada  Velez, and  Jenifer Alcorn, Valerie Mahfood.

Highest Achievements
 of the Year

Ann "Brown Sugar" Wolfe


Ann Wolfe faced her only loss this year when she fought Valerie Mahfood in what was picked by boxing fans as the best televised women's fight of the year.  Wolfe has demonstrated that she also gives back to the sport and the community. She opened up a  boxing gym for kids this year in Texas.  Runner-Up: Isra Girgrah  Honorable Mentioned:  Kelsey Jeffries, Layla McCarter, Melissa Del Valle, and Naquana Smalls. 

Most Inspirational
 of the Year

Sumya "Island Girl" Anani

Sumya Anani did not get many opportunities to fight this year - in fact, she got one fight---and that ended in a win for her in two minutes.  But Regardless, Anani talks about issues in the sport even if those issues are controversial, and she is a positive role model for other women boxers.   Runner-Up: Ann Wolfe Honorable Mentioned:  Sunshine Fettkether, Layla McCarter 

Boxer of the Year
Stephanie "All Action" Dobbs

Stephanie Dobbs, 8-12-2 (5KO), 102 lobs., of Moore, Oklahoma,  IS THE BUSIEST Pro Female Boxer of the year in 2003.  Dobbs has had 13 fights, that included fighting Anita Christensen in Denmark!  Dobbs loves to box, and she is training very hard to improve in the sport.  Dobbs has fought just about any and everyone in her weight class.  Dobbs' ring name is "All Action", but WBAN calls her a lil' spitfire, because when you see footage of her, she is not only "All Action", but she is gutsy like a spitfire!

Most Improved
 of the Year

Laila "She Bee-Stingin" Ali

Who in the world would NOT give this honor to Ali!  Laila "She Bee Stingin" Ali, 16-0-0,  (and she DOES have a stinger!)  has made huge strides to be one of the very best female boxers in the world.  Ali's hard work in the gym leaves no doubt her dedication to be one of the top in her class. 

Top European Fighter
Regina Halmich

German Female boxer Regina Halmich, 43-1-0 (15KO), remains one of the most popular and noted boxers in her country.  Halmich has been on many television programs, magazines, and this year she was named by the German Magazine MAXIM in their sports section as "Woman of the Year Award."

Top Amateur
 of the Year

Chris Martinon

Chris Martinon, 17,  of California, won the USA Boxing Nationals earlier this year.  Chris had actually entered the open division at USA Nationals and beat national champ Stella Nihoff in the first match, But that win was disqualified when it was discovered she was not old enough. Chris re-enter the tournament and the won that division, and was ultimately named "Best Boxer".  Martinon just recently won the open division of the National PAL Tournament.   Runner-Up: Naquana Small

Best-Kept Secret
Woman Boxer

Valanna McGee

So WHO IS the Best-Kept Secret woman boxer for the year 2003?  Well, ask no further, because it can be no other than Valanna McGee!  McGee, 23. a featherweight, with a 4-2-0 record, from Sacramento, California, has taken on some of the toughest foes in her boxing career thus far!  Check this out.... McGee has her pro debut against Eliza Olson...Ouch, that is a tough start....  With only a 2-1 record McGee steps through the ropes against IFBA World champion Kelsey Jeffries and loses by only an eight-round split decision!  So folks...BE ON THE LOOKOUT for this "Best-Kept Secret" because WBAN's prediction is that McGee will not be a secret for long!

Top Rookies
of the Year (Tied)

Carina Moreno - Mary Jo Sanders

Carina Moreno, 23, 3-0-0, works out at the Watsonville Police Activities League under the tutelage of Rick Noble.  Carina is a formal three-time member of the U.S. national Women's Boxing Team.  Moreno won the 2001 Championships for the same event.  In August 2002, Moreno won her third-straight national title at the U.S. Women's National Boxing Championship in Scranton.  Moreno made her pro debut in July, and almost did not get on the "Riot of the Hyatt" when not one boxer would step forward to fight her.  Finally they did find an opponent, and Moreno won the fight with a unanimous decision.

Top Rookies
of the Year (Tied)

Carina Moreno - Mary Jo Sanders

Mary Jo Sanders, 6-0-0, fights out of Detroit, Michigan, and in less than one year has already fought six times!  Sanders is definitely a rising star on the scene and will be tough foe for many boxers in the sport today.!  Sanders made her pro debut in February 2003, and has been going strong ever since!

Busiest Rookie
of the Year
Hollie "Hot Stuff" Dunaway

Hollie "Hot Stuff" Dunaway, 110 lbs., of Ft. Smith, Arkansas,  has had NINE fights in the year 2003, making her pro debut in February!  She has been busy for a new fighter, accumulating a 6-3-0 record.  Dunaway did not come from the amateurs. 

The Most Unexpected
Rookie Of the Year
Tonya "America's Bad Girl" Harding

Tonya Harding, ice skater turned boxer,  began her boxing career in the year 2002, when she fought an exhibition match against Paula Jones on "Celebrity Boxing."  This year in  February,  Harding made her pro debut, and has fought five fights this year, accumulating a 3-2-0 record. The news media buzzed in a frenzy when Harding,  best known as an Olympic ice skater turned to boxing.

Top Televised Fight of the Year
Ann Wolfe vs. Valerie Mahfood

The Ann Wolfe vs. Valerie Mahfood rematch in the year 2003 won "Hands down" when the overwhelming votes by boxing fans went to this fight!  Wolfe and Mahfood fought on the same card as the Ali - Martin fight on Pay-Per-View.

Top Untelevised Fight of the Year
Jo Jo Wyman vs. Laura Serrano

This fight SHOULD have been televised---it wasn't.  Jo Jo Wyman fought Laura Serrano in July of 2003, and she won by a six-round unanimous decision over Serrano.  Wyman dropped Serrano in the second and fifth Round.

Biggest Upsets of the Year
Lisa Holewyne defeating Sunshine Fettkether
Galina Ivanova defeating Daisy Lang


Very few people thought that Lisa Holewyne could pull a win after being stopped by Sunshine Fettkether the first time that they fought earlier this year, but Holewyne changed trainers and worked out hard to rematch with Fettkether.  Holewyne defeated Fettkether and gained a GBU Welterweight belt in the process!    In November of 2003,  Oberfrankenhalle, Bayreuth, In a big upset, Super Flyweight Galina Ivanova (Gumliiska)  won a ten-round unanimous decision and becoming the new WIBF Super-Flyweight champion over Daisy Lang.  Not many thought that Ivanova, at  9-9-1  would defeat Lang, 17-1-1, but she won convincingly with final judges scores at 96-94, 99-91, an 97-93.

The "NOT SO HOT" In Women's
Boxing For the Year 2003!


The "I-Forgot-To-Train Award
Willicia Moorehead
Excerpt News report of one of Willicia's fights in 2003

"Moorehead, who struggled to throw simple punches, was down twice before referee Frank Garza stopped the fight."


Worst Sports Television Networks
(In regards to covering Women's Boxing Only)
HBO has worn out their old and tired excuses as to  why they do not feature women's boxing on their televised segment of their shows.   It is quite obvious that at this point and time that they (HBO) could feature women boxers and create an interest on their shows for women in the sport. 

Refer to HBO for same comments, other than additional comments from WBAN about Showtime's show - ShoBox - The New Generation.  "Sho-Box"   is FAR from being the "New Generation", because if it WAS the "NEW GENERATION" as they advertise----They would include women boxers.


The Dumbest Dark-age Remarks in 2003
(In regards to Women's Boxing Only)
Russell Peltz    
(EXCERPT) Peltz was interviewed in 2003 on another boxing website (, who asked Peltz what he thought of women's boxing.  Peltz said in that interview: "I hate it. I think it's repulsive, I think it's disgusting, I think I'm a male chauvinist.  I met Laila Ali, and she's a wonderful person, and I've met Jamie Clampitt and so many of them and they know my feelings and they know when I was in my early days at ESPN if it would have been up to me, we would never have seen women boxing, because I can't imagine, if I had a daughter or my wife, how can you send them out there? I had a woman's fight at the Blue Horizon, I had to put it on in order to get the USA show. Brad Jacobs said, 'if you want the date, you have to have this fight on the undercard,' so I did it, I don't know if I've done it again, I might have but if my father were alive and he'd seen me promote a woman's fight, he would have said, 'is this what it's come to? Is this what I raised you to do?' It's just the way I am."  Peltz went on to explain in this interview that some of the women's fights are terrific, and he re-enforces that comment with "They Really are."  BUT he adds "But, wrestling's entertaining, too, I just don't like to see women get hit and some people in women's boxing really hold a grudge against me for that reason."  Peltz also goes on to say that he hasn't made  "those decisions (with ESPN)" in years, so what is the difference whether he likes it and says, "I don't like it.  I think it's awful."   Peltz states, "I've seen some bad ones, girls with no skill, getting beat up by girls who have some skills, and I don't use the word 'girls' derogatorily, women, and I look in the corner to see the guy who sending her out there for the next round, I said, 'what are you doing? This is your daughter, your wife, look at her she's getting pummeled around the face, how could you do this?' I just don't like it and I'm not afraid to share my feelings."

WBAN's Comments: WBAN would like to thank Peltz for "Sharing."  WBAN feels that Peltz was able to make his point "over and over...and ah...over again!"  Peltz was asked a "simple question"  by Fightnews and he managed to ramble on, repeating himself several times about his dislike for women's boxing.  WBAN congratulations Peltz for being chosen for making the  "Dumbest Dark-Age Remarks in 2003".   He earned it.



Best Televised Fight - Wolfe vs. Mahfood was an excellent fight. It doesn't get any better than that. Both fighters showed unbelievable skill and power. They both exhausted each other by the end of the fight. They made the Ali/Martin fight look amateur. Congrats to Wolfe and Mahfood for showing what women's boxing is really all about.

Biggest Mismatch of the year:  Laila was way too big for Christy Martin.

Rookie of the year: Valanna McGee’s fight with Kelsey Jeffries was maybe not fight of the year, but clearly one of the biggest "almost upsets" and a true display of this woman's talent! Watch out for her in the near future.

Biggest Mismatch: Ali-Martin: waste of pay per view time!

Top TV Fight: Ann Wolfe wins but Mahfood does serious damage.

Biggest Mismatch: Martin gives over a 20 pound weight advantage to a younger, faster, stronger Ali.

Biggest Mismatch: Martin-Ali: This was one-sided and brutal. But it had to happen. We knew how this would turn out but perhaps we didn't know it would have been so lop-sided.

Fighter of the year: Valerie Mahfood put up a great fight against Ann Wolfe. She showed a lot of heart and never gave up. She is a true fighter.

Most Achievement: Kelsey Jeffries - Kelsey has been on a roll this year. She has fought anybody and everybody. She is determined and competitive. I'm not sure but I think she's fought more fights than anyone other fighter this year.

Most Inspirational: Sumya Anani - Sumya is not only a tremendous fighter, but she has a tremendous spirit. She always speaks so positive about other fighters, and she always speaks the truth. Keep it up Sumya. You are an inspiration to us all.

Best Televised fight of the year: Undercard of that horrid mismatch Ali-Martin. That was a real fight with Valerie Mahfood vs. Ann Wolfe. Even hardcore fellaz at the bar, were amazed at this specimen called Ann Wolfe, and the sturdy chin of Valerie.

Top Amateur of the year: Naquana Smalls - She has the potential of becoming women's boxing's equivalent of Michael Vick. She has the "Jordan Factor," that thing that Michael Jordan, Serena Williams, Michael Vick, Mike Tyson, and Oscar De La Hoya have. You want to watch her fight. If Anani or Sjauw is still fighting in a few years, I'd love to see Smalls fight them.

Top Fighter of the Year: It's a toss up between Isra Girgrah and Kelsey Jeffries because they fought many times, against good competition, proving their skills over and over. I would have to chose Jeffries though. She came back from a loss, took on solid competition and proved herself. This doesn't take away from Girgrah, just highlights Jeffries' activity THIS year. The other two may have skill and notoriety, but not nearly as deserving of recognition this year, as Girgrah and Jeffries.

Biggest Mismatch: Ali – Martin: It is a shame to see fights like this made all for the sake of making the big bucks. Come on... let's build the true fighters up so they can get the exposure they need. After all, it's about the sport not about certain fighters only.

Most Inspirational: Stephanie Dobbs - In spite of a 4-6-1 record, she was willing to fight any and all, even when she was hopelessly outclassed.

Biggest Mismatches: Hallback 19-3-1 (8) TKOing Michelle Ewing 0-4, Marcello Acuna 13-4 (7) decisioning Carman Montiel 0-3, Kristina Folmar 9-1 (7) beating Ileana Serrano 0-2, Bridget Riley 15-3 (7) TKOing Nichole Gallegos 0-3, are just some of the obvious mismatches.

Fighter of the year: My vote goes to Ann Wolfe. I cannot say about the ethic and talent of this woman. She truly is amazing. She erased the memory of her only pro loss and also took on a very tough and game Sunshine Fettkether. I say kudos to Ann.


Fighter of the year: I vote for Kelsey Jeffries. I think she has an edge over the other three fighters because of her technique. Overall, they are all great fighters, but
if I have to pick one, I pick her.

Fighter of the Year:  I would like to vote for Kelsey Jeffries for Fighter of the Year......To fight 8 times in one year and win seven of them takes some real ____ (or "guts" in her case LOL)...

Fighter of the Year: Kelsey Jeffries all the way! As for rookie of the year "Hotstuff" Hollie Dunaway!

Fighter of the Year: My vote is for Ann Wolfe….not her fault that she cannot get more fights. She is the “Real Deal”.

Fighter of the Year: Kel-C..without a doubt is the fighter of the year. Ann didn't fight enough to be considered. Isra's win against Serrano was bogus. Ali/Martin was a huge mismatch and should not have went down. Ali did not beat Almager into submission...Almager quit.

Fighter of the Year: A joint award to Jeffries & Girgrah ------Based upon the # of fights & the quality of their opposition.

Fighter of the Year: I vote for Kelsey Jefferies out of the four. Everyone of the four are excellent boxers. But I have to go with her because she has a world title and defends it. I guess I am just old school when it comes to that. One does not collect titles one defends titles. I never see her fight on TV as far as I know but I hope that I do.




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