On January 31, 2008, Paradise Theatre in the Bronx, Alicia “Slick” Ashley faced Brooke “No Mercy” Dierdorff for a scheduled eight rounds and the NABF Bantamweight Title.
Former dancer with scholarships to Alvin Ailey and Martha Graham dance schools, Alicia carries ballroom elegance into the ring. A southpaw coupled with an unusual style, hands often down, Alicia still managed to dodge Brooke’s punches for the first two rounds through a fluid body movement that kept her opponent off balance.
Brooke, a younger fighter of 26, still comes with some tough fighting experience and a lot of heart. But the veteran bloodied her nose in the third round and started to step up the pace. Progressively, Alicia scored higher in the fourth, then slipped in notable hard lefts in the fifth and sixth. Whenever Brooke fired back with a flurry, Alicia returned with her own combinations more accurate and connected.
During the final two rounds, a valiant, but frustrated Brooke would rush in attempting to capitalize on her adversary’s openings, only to walk into a solid left, and then discover that Alicia had disappeared. Hands up now, Alicia scored heavily with right hooks and lefts. Brooke held tough and fought back, however, still unable to do any serious damage.
As Star Boxing Public Relation’s Queen Rachel Charles notes, “Getting Old is Not for Sissies.” While 40 might be a middle age reminder to some, one determined competitor not only feels, but also glows young and vibrant. Almost to the day of her 8th year in Professional boxing, smooth, smart, educated and savvy, Alicia showed little sign of slowing down and captured the NABF title.