Eight years and two kids later, Yvonne Chavez returns to the fight scene.
When Yvonne Chavez was a teenager, she was at the top of her game.
After winning a U.S. kickboxing title at the young age of 19, Chavez had
barely arrived on the scene, before circumstances took her away from the
Now, eight years and two children later, Chavez is ready to return.
“All this time, I wanted to fight,” says Chavez, now 27. “But with kids, it
was too hard.”
Chavez has two sons, ages 2 and 8.
“I know that if I don’t do it now, I won’t do it. Now’s my time.”
This time around, Chavez will try her hand at boxing rather than return to
“I was a good kickboxer because I could kick hard,” she says. “Now, as a
boxer, my strength is in punching power.”
While watching Chavez spar with the elusive Mark Acosta may reveal a certain
rawness to her style, when she swings, she throws with commitment.
“I’m still learning technique,” she says, then smiles: “But I’m a puncher.”
The general consensus in the gym: “She can hit like a mule . . . .”
Trainer Luis Chavez admits that Yvonne is “a little heavy in her movements”
but that her punching power will even the score in the ring.
Next weekend, she’ll get the chance to prove it when she makes her pro debut
in Roswell against fellow debuter Liz Mathiason.
Like Chavez, Mathiason is a newcomer to boxing: a bit green but with power.
In fact, Mathiason’s trainer, Rocky Stapleton, describes his fighter with
the same exact words: “She can hit like a mule.”
“I got the heart and I can take a lot,” says Chavez. “The harder they fight,
the more it will bring out in me.”
Chavez and Mathiason will fight at 123, although Chavez is, optimally, a
bantamweight. During her 13-fight kickboxing career (11-2, 7 KO’s), however,
she became accustomed to fighting heavier girls.
“Sometimes, you had to give up weight just to get a fight.”
The fight on June 21 will be just the beginning for Chavez, she says.
“I want this as a career. I want to be a world champion . . . .”
More on Chavez...
Chavez, at the age 16 year
old, she fought a male kickboxer, and stopped the Wilfred Parra in the third round. The
amateur bout took place at the West Mesa High School, Albuquerque, New
Mexico. (WBAN has the video on this footage).