Martinez Ready for U.S. Open Regionals, Possible Olympics
POSTED: Friday, June 4, 2010 - 6:20pm
UPDATED: Friday, June 4, 2010 - 9:00pm
Friday, June 4: El Paso born and Las Crucen Rita Martinez got into boxing two years ago to get back into shape. Who knew what stood in front of her and her trainer, Ric Ponce of Omega Boxing Club in Las Cruces. Both are UPS workers, and Rita just hoped to get into shape. Now, according to Ponce, Martinez is ranked 3rd in the nation for females at 132 pounds. Martinez will fight in Albuquerque on June 11 in the U.S. Open Regional Tournament. Champions advance to Nationals, with a chance to go to the U.S. Olympic Training Center. Rita Martinez said, "It's exciting, it's a once in a lifetime opportunity for me, and it's a big move for women's boxing, in general, as a sport. Right now, all I can say is that I want to encourage other women to get involved. It's a good opportunity for us. It's long overdue, it's long overdue." Rita and her coach expect some tough competition. "I expect to come across some tough fighters. We are fighting against some girls who are from Colorado, Utah, and Arizona, so those are girls who won in their state divisions, so I know I am going to be competing against their best."