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Olivia Gerula
 
   

5'3" Olivia "The Predator" Gerula was born on May 1, 1979 in Brampton, Ontario, Canada. In the summer of 1980, her family moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba.

She was always active, and started out in soccer and track. At age eight, she was the top goal scorer on the Kildonan Community Soccer Team and helped to lead them to the first girls' championship. Her soccer career ended with the provincial championship in Toronto with the Kilcona Select Team.

Olivia also enjoyed three years of gymnastics, competing at a high level. She excelled at the sport but told WBAN "after having minor surgery on my wrist, I was no longer able to compete in gymnastics."

Growing up with two older brothers made Olivia competitive ... she was always interested in traditional male sports and this weighed heavily in her decision to get into Martial Arts, then into Kickboxing and eventually into Boxing.    she said, "I chose a gym called Sik-Tai. After checking out a kickboxing class of guys only, my mother was concerned I’d get hurt. So we compromised with martial arts instead. I loved it----couldn’t get enough of it. I started staying later and later until I was training both martial arts and kickboxing classes." She competed in martial arts but found it didn't challenge her abilities enough. "My trainer went to bat for me and my mom agreed to let me train and compete in kickboxing", she says. Because of her previous sports involvements, Olivia developed very strong leg muscles to go with flexibility from her gymnastics. Both qualities made her the ideal kickboxing candidate when she took up the sport in 1994.

Olivia won a few amateur titles, and then decided to go pro in 1996. She admits that she got very frustrated with not being able to get much action as a pro kickboxer.  After winning five straight bouts, the 18-year old Olivia was KO'd by world champion Bridgett Riley, her only kickboxing loss.

On June 21, 1997 at the PNE Agrodome in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Sarah Schmedding and Para Draine of Spokane, Washington defeated Olivia and Tara Morneau of Vancouver in a Tag Team Boxing exhibition with one six-minute round.

In 1997, Olivia’s gym received a call for her to fight as a pro boxer. "Scary, because at the time I wasn’t all that good with my hands. My legs were the heart and soul of my fighting", she remembers.  But, regardless of how she felt about her hands versus her feet, she won that first pro fight on October 4, 1997 in Rochester, Minnesota, taking a four-round decision over Christina Berry of Lacrosse, Wisconsin, who fell to 1-2 with the loss.

On October 14, 1997 in Boise, Idaho, Olivia (156 lbs) lost a four-round unanimous (40-36,40-37,40-36) decision to her former tag team opponent Sarah Schmedding (5'7", 144 lbs) of Green Acres, Washington who improved her own pro record to 2-0.

On January 24, 1998 at the Hotel Bismarck in Bismarck, North Dakota, Olivia scored a four-round unanimous (40-36) decision over Mandan, North Dakota's Ragan Pudwill, who fell to 1-4.

On March 27, 1998 at the Tacoma Dome In Tacoma, Washington, Olivia (142 lbs) held former WIBF welterweight champion Diana Dutra (137 lbs) to a draw over four rounds. Dutra's record was 3-1-1.

On May 8, 1998 in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada, Olivia (137 lbs) won a five-round split (48-47,48-47,46-49)  decision over pro debuter Cathy Boyes (135 lbs) of Kamloops, British Columbia. All five rounds were hard fought and evenly contested, and the fight was described to me as "just an old fashioned slugfest throughout".

On July 31, 1998 at the Tropicana in Atlantic City. New Jersey, Kathy Collins of Plainview, New York won a ten-round unanimous decision over Olivia, moving her pro record to 11-0-3.

Gibbs vs. Gerula
Olivia against Fredia Gibbs in 1998

On September 17, 1998 at the Grand Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi, Fredia Gibbs (134 lbs) of Studio City, California won a ten-round unanimous decision over Olivia (135 lbs). Gibbs improved her pro boxing record to 5-1-0 (2 KO's) with the win.

On April 17, 1999 at the Tropicana in Atlantic City Kathy Collins won an eight-round rematch with Olivia by a unanimous (80-72, 80-72, 79-73) decision. "I was a lot sharper this time than the last time we fought," Kathy told the press after this fight. "I hit her some real solid shots." For her part, Gerula had won the crowd over with her willingness to trade with Collins, and the lop-sided decision was greeted with boos. Collins improved her record to 12-1-3 (3 KO's)

On June 12, 1999 at the Shriner's Auditorium in Wilmington, Massachusetts IWBF junior lightweight champion Melissa Salamone (139 lbs) of Miami, Florida won an eight-round unanimous decision over Olivia (140 lbs), improving her pro record to 17-0-0.

Olivia returned to kickboxing on June 18, 1999 at the Winnipeg Convention Centre, winning a four round unanamous decision over Emily McCain of St. Louis, Missouri.

On April 7, 2001, Olivia returned to the ring to face former US national amateur champion Dakota Stone of Seattle, Washington at the Coeur d'Alene Casino in Worley, Idaho.  Olivia says that she was anxious to prove to herself that she was still in the game. Dakota Stone (5'10") weighed in at 157 lbs while Olivia came in at 160 lbs and lost a four-round unanimous (40-36,40-36,40-36) decision.  Stone improved her record to 3-1-1 with the win. 

On August 10, 2003 at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Washington, Olivia (135 lbs) knocked out Laramie Hinostroza (5' 5", 133 lbs) of Emporia, Kansas in the first round of a scheduled four-rounder. Hinostroza fell to 4-2 (2 KO's) with this loss.

On September 18, 2003 at Four Bears Casino, Newtown, North Dakota, Olivia (141 lbs) fought Mia St. John (139 lbs) to a six-round majority draw.  St. John's record moved to 28-3-2 with the draw. 


Olivia vs Betty Stephens in March 2004
Copyrighted photo by Mary Ann Owen of BILV

On March 26, 2004 at Fort Cheyenne Casino in North Las Vegas, Nevada, Olivia (135 lbs) won a six-round unanimous (60-54,60-54,60-54) decision over Betty Stephens (135 lbs) of Salt Lake City, Utah. Olivia used her height and reach advantage i this fight to pop the shorter Stephens with left jabs and rights as Stephens tried to work her way inside to brawl. The early rounds saw Stephens rushing in with thought of defense, making her an easy target for Olivia, who snapped Stephens's head back with right hands that quickly reddened the face of the game brawler. Stephens had ome success with looping shots to the head and body, but Olivia's counter punching took its toll and Stephens was fading badly by the third round. With little left in her gas tank Stephens was forced to stay outside until she could regain a burst of energy while Olivia worked her over with crisp, clean, rights. Stephens fell to 2-1 with the loss. For more photos by Mary Ann Owen and video clips of this bout see MPEG/Photo Gallery #158 on the WBAN Records Member Site.


Jessica Rakoczy vs Olivia in July 2004
Copyrighted photo taken by Jessica Trevino

On July 1, 2004 at the Palace Indian Gaming Center in Lemoore, California, expatriate Canadian Jessica Rakoczy (134 lbs) won an eight-round unanimous (80-72,80-72,79-73) decision over Olivia (133 lbs). Rakoczy was "too fast and too accurate" for Olivia according to a ringside correspondent, and advanced her pro record to 16-1-0 (4 KO's) with the win. For more photos and video clips of this bout see MPEG/Photo Gallery #185 on the WBAN Records Member Site.

On September 24, 2004 at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Jelena Mrdjenovich (130 lbs) of Edmonton started slow, got behind, then knocked out Olivia (128 lbs) at 1:13 in the fourth round of a scheduled six-rounder. Olivia fell straight back onto the canvas from a left hook, hit her head on the canvas, and needed several minutes to recover. Mrdjenovich improved to 7-0-0 (5 KO) with the win, dropping Olivia  to 5-8-2 with her first loss by KO.

"It took me three rounds to get going," said Mrdjenovich, "but I cracked at the end of the third and if I'd have had two more seconds, I could have ended it right there. In the fourth, I knew she was hurt. I hit her with a clean hit right and then followed the second with a left hook and that was it."

On September 23, 2006 at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Olivia (127 lbs) stopped Amanda Carriere (129 lbs) of Edmonton at 1:55 in the second round of a scheduled four-rounder. The bout featured good action that brought the crowd to its feet but Gerula was the stronger and finally dropped Carriere on the way to the TKO win. "This was a tremendous win for me after an enforced two-year lay off and I plan to repeat the performance as often as I can", said Gerula. Carriere, a former Canadian national amateur bronze medalist, fell to 5-1-1 (2 KO's) with her first pro loss

January 26, 2007 at the Convention Center in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada Olivia (128 lbs) won by a six-round unanimous decision over Olga Heron (128 lbs). Olivia told WBAN: "The plan was to out box her and not get sucked into brawling and it worked beautifully. She had a lot more boxing skill then anyone gave her credit for which made for an entertaining fight.  As mentioned in the press release the fight will be air on pay-per-view for all to judge and enjoy. I'll be interested to see whether anyone agrees with Olga's opinion that 'home town' judging was in my favor. Mind you that would definitely be a switch for me.  Anyhow the fight felt great and after finishing the first 6 round fight I've had in over 3 years I was really to go another 6. I'm working on signing another fight in March."  Olivia improved her record to 7-8-2 (2 KO's) while Heron fell to 4-9 (1 KO).


Maureen Shea vs Olivia Gerula in Reno, NV
Copyrighted photo taken by Mary Ann Owen

On July 6, 2007 in front of 1,500 fans in an outdoor parking lot at the Eldorado Hotel and Casino in Reno, Nevada,. Maureen Shea (126 lbs) of New York City won a convincing six-round unanimous (60-54,60-54,59-55) decision over Olivia (128 lbs). Shea took control of the bout with a strong body attack in the first three rounds. "She said to me after the fight that I was a lot better than she expected," Shea told reporters, "the body shots were definitely working. I feel like I could've done a little better. Fighting outdoors for the first time, I'd probably give myself a 9." Shea improved her record to 11-0-0 (5 KO's) while Gerula fell to 7-9-2 (2 KO's) with the loss. (For more photos of the fight by Mary Ann Owen, see WBAN Photo Gallery #435 on the WBAN Records Member Site).


Olivia Gerula vs Sosadea Razo in Las Vegas, NV
Copyrighted photo taken by Mary Ann Owen

On August 24, 2007  at the Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, Olivia (128 lbs) picked her shots in a four round fight against Sosadea Razo (130 lbs) of California. Razo tagged Gerula a few times but it did not faze Gerula, Gerula came back landing combinations incorporating some good lateral movement on the way to a victory that moved her record to 8-9-2 (2 KOs). The 31-year-old Razo fell to 5-9-0 (1 KOs).


Sandy Tsagouris (l) avoids a right from Olivia Gerula
Copyrighted photo taken by Durell Wambolt

On October 13, 2007 at the Powerade Centre in Brampton, Ontario, Canada, Sandy Tsagouris (128 lbs) of Brampton remained undefeated when she defeated Olivia (128 lbs), by an eight round majority (76-76,77-75,77-75) decision for the vacant Canadian Boxing Federation (CBF) Female Super Featherweight title. According to Shawn McWilliams of FightNews Canada, "Both fighters entered the ring looking focused and determined. Tsagouris had ... success ... scoring points on nice counter punching and punishing her opponent with a stiff and constant jab . Olivia's offence was mounted scoring the majority of her points with sporadic straight right hands and right hooks. Both ladies fought hard and did not give an inch. The fight's end saw both women bloodied and was entertaining wire to wire. This is a benchmark in women's boxing here in Canada and hopefully is to be the beginning of many exciting bouts in the future."  The win improved Tsagouris' record to 7-0 (3 KO's) while Gerula slipped to 8-10-2 (2 KO's).  Tsagouris had been ranked #10 at featherweight before the fight by WBAN, while Gerula was ranked #18 at junior lightweight. For more photos of the fight by Durell Wambolt, see WBAN Photo Gallery #448 on the WBAN Records Member Site.

On October 24, 2008 at the Convention Centre in Winnipeg, Olivia (133 lbs) won by a TKO at the end of the fourth round over Monique Duval (131 lbs) of Oakville, Ontario, who fell to 0-5 with the loss. Duval's nose was bloodied and she went to her corner and referee Bill Tibbs stopped the contest on the advice of Duval's corner.

On March 3, 2009 at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan, Olivia Gerula defeated Japan's Fujin Raika [aka: Emiko Raika] by an eight round split decision (78-77, 78-76, and 76-77). Joe Koizumi told FightNews.com: "Olivia Gerula made a good display of her shifty footwork and accurate shots to win an upset split but well-received decision over Raika over eight two-minute rounds ... Gerula landed light but accurate punches from Hamed-like angles, busily moving side-to-side, to and fro, all the way. Olivia, four years her junior at 29, outspeeded and outclassed the hard-hitting but slower Raika ,,, despite her continual nose-bleeding caused by an accidental butt in the fourth"

WBAN was told, "In what was scored a close fight. Team Gerula feels there was a much bigger gap and while taking the brunt of several unintentional head butts remained focussed on their objective to out box and not get caught in wild exchanges. Gerula was able to get the punches off first and used lateral movement to take away Raika's aggressiveness and power."   

“One judge actually scored in her favour, which just about gave me a heart attack. I was like, ‘No, I can’t lose this fight’ because it was a clear win on my part,” Gerula told Jolie Toews of Canstar News, adding “I was surprised she didn’t have more power behind her hits. I expected it to be a little harsher than what it was, but I was not surprised to get the head butts that I got.”   In an interview on the way to Tokyo, Gerula had said she fully intended to return looking like a boxer. "I actually thought I’d look a whole lot worse. I was kinda disappointed.”  Raika fell to 18-5-1 (6 KO's) with her second straight loss at home.

On April 9, 2009 in front of a sold-out house at the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Olivia (127 lbs) won a ten-round unanimous (97-94,97-94,96-95) decision over Jelena Mrdjenovich (129 lbs) of Edmonton for the WBC Super Featherweight world title. Gerula came out aggressively and outhustled the home-standing Mrdjenovich, who looked tired after the early rounds and was unable to mount a sufficient comeback after her corner told her she would need a KO to win the fight.  By contrast, Gerula was smiling between the rounds, apparently confident that her fight plan was working.  Mrdjenovich's trainer Milan Lubovac was unhappy with his fighter's performance, saying "We can't blame this one on the judges or the referee; my fighter just didn't fight. She was breathing through her mouth after two rounds. What does that tell you? She didn't do her running to get ready and she was complacent in the gym. She didn't want to pay the price that a champion has to pay. Jelena has all the talent in the world, but that means nothing if you choose not to put it to use. That was her choice tonight. I knew after the fourth round she couldn't win unless she got a KO, but she didn't go for it. Her heart wasn't in it after she ran out of gas. She's going to have to decide if she still wants to pay the price, or call it a day."  Gerula's trainer Mark Collins was delighted with Olivia's performance, saying "She simply outworked her from the get-go. Her movement, feinting and constant pressure simply brought down Jelena and by the time the ninth round rolled around Jelena had nothing left."

"It was an amazing fight," said Gerula. "I was aggressive from the very beginning. She tried to land that famous left hook of hers and she landed a few. But I’ve learned to cover up and take some punches. I had her in trouble... she did hit the canvas once but they called it a slip. I had her tired and backed up and she was holding. It was a war and it was great. This is the payoff for all the years I’ve put in, all that time and effort. This is what it’s all about."  Mrdjenovich fell to 23-4-1 (11 KOs).


Olivia Gerula lands a right on Myriam Chomaz
Copyrighted photo taken by Mary Ann Owen

On December 17, 2009 at Halle Carpentier in Paris, France, Olivia (127 lbs) won a 10-round majority (95-95,96-94,97-93) decision over WBC Interim Junior Lightweight Champion Myriam Chomaz (129 lbs) of France to unify the WBC Junior Lightweight title.  Gerula and Chomaz went toe to toe in almost every round, with Gerula winning most exchanges. Chomaz ended the fight with swelling under her right eye and a bruised left cheek but Gerula was not noticeably marked and apparently had the better of more rounds than she was credited with by two judges.  Chomaz suffered her second pro loss, dropping to 12-2 (7 KOs). For more photos of the bout by Mary Ann Owen see MPEG/Photo Gallery #530 on the WBAN Records Member Site.

Olivia Gerula was named WBAN Fighter of the Year for 2009 in recognition of her three on-the-road wins over world class opponents, as well as Fighter of the Month for January 2010 in recognition of her belt unification win over Chomaz.  

On July 8, 2010 at the Winnipeg Convention Center, Olivia (127 lbs) won a ten-round unanimous (98-92, 98-92, 97-93) decision over Brooke Dierdorff (127 lbs) of Illinois defending her WBC Junior Lightweight title.  Gerula started slowly but came on strong in the later rounds after bloodying Dierdorff's nose in the fifth round. “I always start slow," she told the WInnipeg Sun's Kirk Penton. “I’ve always been a slow starter. I always kind of feel it out. I wanted to see what her power’s like, too, so I kind of got a feel for that — and a little bit of ear ringing on the side, too. Other than that, it was pretty good.  She slowed down after about the fifth because she got tired, and I capitalized on that.  I knew she was leaning on me because she was tired. So the trick was to get out and try to hit the shots. I just had a little hard time getting that until the end."  Dierdorff fell to 6-5-1 (3 KO's).

On November 27, 2010 at Johanneshov, Stockholm, Sweden, Frida Wallberg (128 lbs) of Gothenburg, Sweden took on Olivia Gerula (128 lbs) for the WBC Junior Lightweight title.  There were several controversial aspects to this fight.  First, the WBC sanctioned an eight-round fight for its world title in deference to Swedish rules which for many years had banned professional boxing altogether and only recently allowed women's competition with limits to the lengths of the fights. (The last 8-round fight in Sweden had been in 1967). Second, the "historic" fight's unanimous (77-75,78-75,78-75) decision for the home-standing Frida was controversial.  Gerula, who had negotiated a 10-round rematch outside Sweden into her fight contract told WBAN "I believe I have just played a part in a much bigger picture and now the WBC will again make progressive history with the 10 round rematch clause that was put into contract. And it is my only conciliation that when the rematch takes place this decision will be put to rights!"    Frida Wallberg improved her pro record to 9-0 (2 KO's) with the decision. 

On September 3, 2011 at Karlstad CCC in Karlstad, Sweden, Frida Wallberg (129 lbs) won a ten-round unanimous (99-91,98-92,98-92) decision over Olivia (130 lbs) in a rematch for the WBC Junior Lightweight title. The fight was scrappy and closely fought in most rounds but Wallberg clearly won several stanzas and also finished stronger with Gerula against the ropes. Gerula told WBAN: "The fight did not go as planned but not for lack of trying. I lost. The fight was still a mess but this time she deserved to win. I can walk away from this loss disappointed but not devastated and the only thing hurt is my pride. So from here it's a couple weeks off, time with the family and then back to the gym. Thank you everyone for all the support." Gerula’s record fell to 13-12-2 (3 KO) while Wallberg remained undefeated at 10-0 (2 KO's).

Mrdjenovich KO's Gerula
Jelena Mrdjenovich stands over fallen Olivia Gerula
copyrighted photo by Guhdar Photography

On December 9, 2011 at the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta Jelena Mrdjenovich (125 lbs) of Edmonton KO'd Olivia (125 lbs) at 0:23 in the ninth round of a scheduled ten-rounder for the WIBA Featherweight title. Mrdjenovich was ahead by 78-74 on all three scorecards of the open scoring before she caught Gerula with a perfectly placed left hook to the temple as she closed in.  Gerula hit the canvas face down and was out cold for several minutes. Mrdjenovich improved to 26-8-1 (13 KO's) with the win. Gerula, who took the fight at a week's notice as a replacement for injured Sarah Pucek, fell to 13-13-2 (3 KO's).

On May 24, 2013 at the Westchester County Center in White Plains, New York, USA Ronica Jeffrey (126 lbs) of New York won the vacant IWBF Junior Lightweight title with a unanimous (99-91, 99-91,98-92) ten round decision over Olivia Gerula (125 lbs).  WBAN contributor Bernie McCoy described the fight: "After Jeffrey and Gerula traded the opening two rounds, the new champion seemed to shift into a different gear in the third stanza. Jeffrey's fast hands got faster, her in and out movement got quicker, and her ring speed kept her away from courageous attempts by Gerula to slow down the new champion with counterpunching tactics. For the next eight rounds, each two minute stanza took on a mirror like pattern: Jeffrey constantly moving around the ring, suddenly, quickly closing on Gerula, landing head and body shots and just as quickly, moving out of Gerula's punching range. Gerula, to her credit maintained a dogged pressure on Jeffrey throughout those eight rounds, and, at times, managed to force the new champion to the ropes or a corner, taking the opportunity to land an overhand left hook or right cross, but the game effort fell short." Jeffrey improved to 13-0 (1 KO) with the win while Gerula, a several-time former world champion with a deceptive overall record, fell to 13-14-2 (3 KO's)

Promoters and matchmakers acknowledge Olivia as an aggressive, exciting fighter with good stamina. They also recognize that she  accepts challenges that more experienced fighters turn down. Some may question this path, but Olivia knows that she cannot develop into a top fighter by competing with less skilled boxers. In order to leave her mark in the world of Women's Boxing - Olivia "The Predator" will continue to accept matches with the best.

Olivia represents herself and can be contacted through her web site.

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Page last updated: Friday, August 09, 2013

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