STORY OF PHILIPPINE BOXING PART LI: ANA JULATON, THE TRUE-BLOODED FILIPINA WORLD FEMALE CHAMPION
By Maloney L. Samaco
Sun, 21 Jun 2020
Ana Julaton was born Luciana Bonifacio Julaton on July 5, 1980 in San Francisco, California, to Filipino parents and United States immigrants Cesario Julaton II and Ahmelia Bonifacio. Her father is from Pozorrubio, Pangasinan and her mother is from Masantol, Pampanga.
Julaton would watch classical Bruce Lee films as a child and began her love for martial arts. At the age of 10, Ana enrolled in a Tae Kwon Do class where she earned her black belt.
At the age of 19, Ana continued her martial arts schooling by enrolling in Kenpo Karate becoming a black belter.
In 2004, aged 24, Ana took up boxing and after only 2 weeks of training, she won a silver medal in the San Francisco Golden Gloves. She participated in a cause for awareness on the exclusion of women boxers to compete in the Olympics.
Three years later, Julaton became one of the top boxers in the United States winning several titles, including the San Francisco Golden Gloves and gaining the silver medal in the 2007 USA Boxing Nationals.
Unfortunately the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games still excluded women boxers, a ban that had been in sports for more than 100 years. So she decided to turn professional and joined the stable of legendary Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach.
Nicknamed "The Hurricane", she became a stablemate of big boxing stars Oscar De La Hoya, James Toney, Amir Khan, Julio Caesar Chavez, Jr., George St. Pierre, and Manny Pacquiao, among others.
In her professional debut, she fought Margherita Valentini of Canada and won by unanimous decision on November 2, 2007 in Cabazon, California.
She faced Carly Batey of USA and triumphed by split decision on February 2, 2008 in Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula, California.
In his third fight, Julaton defeated American Clara De la Torre by unanimous decision on March 13,2008 at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada.
Win number four was over another American boxer Salina Jordan by 1st round KO at 0:37 mark on June 26,2008 at the Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, Lemoore, California.
The she drew with Johanna Mendez during their match over 6 rounds on July 5, 2008 at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada.
Julaton suffered her first loss inflected by Dominga Olivo of USA by split decision on August 21, 2008 at the Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, Lemoore, California for the vacant WBC international female super bantamweight title.
She went on to gain victory against Kelsey Jeffries of USA by majority decision on September 12, 2009 at the HP Pavilion, San Jose, California for the vacant International Boxing Association (IBA) female super bantamweight title.
Julaton was an 8-1 underdog before the fight, capturing a 10-round majority decision. Julaton used her speed and accurate punching to beat the veteran Jeffries and got the choice of the two judges, 98-92 and 96-94. The third judge saw it a 95-95 draw.
She became the first Filipina world champion in boxing, even though the IBA was not a major sanctioning body. She is also one of the quickest boxers ever to win a world title, being a champion in only his seventh professional fight.
Julaton defeated American Donna Biggers by unanimous decision on December 4, 2009 at the HP Pavilion, San Jose, California for the vacant WBO world female super bantamweight title. She became the first Filipina world boxing champion, this time in a major boxing organization. She was also the first female champion of the WBO who previously only recognized male champions.
Julaton’s victory was due to her fast accurate jabs followed up by her stinging power punches. The scores were lopsided 100-90, 99-91 and 99-91.
She lost to the Trinidad and Tobago fighter Lisa Brown by unanimous decision on March 27, 2010 at the Casino Rama, Ramara, Ontario, Canada for the vacant WBA world female super bantamweight title.
On June 30, 2010, she reclaimed the vacant WBO world female super bantamweight title IBA female super bantamweight title by defeating Mexico's Maria Elena Villalobos by split decision at the Casino Rama, Ramara, Ontario, Canada.
Julaton fought extensively in 10 rounds to carve out a 96-94, 96-94, 94-97 and 96-94 close decision. Villalobos fought hard to score a knockout turning the fight into a brawl, but Julaton used her strong jabs to pile up points and took control of the fight.
She defended her crown defeating American Jessica Villafranca by unanimous decision at The Venetian Macao. Then she won over Angel Gladney of USA by unanimous decision in Miami, Florida. And defeated Mexico's Franchesca Alcanter by unanimous decision at the Craneway Pavilion, Point Richmond, California, retaining her WBO world female super bantamweight title.
Julaton lost her title to Argentina's Yesica Patricia Marcos by UD on November 23,2013 at the Teatro Griego Juan Pablo Segundo, San Martin, Mendoza in Argentina.
She recovered from the loss, prevailing over Yolanda Segura by UDin her opponent's home turf in Kanasin, Yucatán, Mexico. Then successively defeating another Mexican Abigail Ramos by 1st round TKO in the same venue.
Julaton suffered her fourth loss to Celina Salazar of USA via unanimous decision on August 17, 2013 in Plaza de Toros, Cancún, Quintana Roo, Mexico.
She defeated two more Mexicans, Perla Hernandez by MD and Yolanda Segura by UD. Both fights were held in hostile venues in Mexico.
Her last two boxing bouts ended in draws, to Karla Valenzuela of Mexico and Maria Jose Nunez of Uruguay. The two fights were also held in Mexico.
Ana later decided to shift to MMA, and became the first ever “Two Sport Athlete to compete at the highest levels of boxing and MMA” in combat sports history by the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame.
After 11 years of professional combat sports, Julaton retires from both boxing and MMA on March 21, 2018. She ended her career with a 14-4-3 with 2 KOs record in boxing and 2-4 with 1 KO in MMA.
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