Saved by the Bell

Saved by the Bell

A Story by Ryan D. Mosley

An underdog story unlike any other. Believe in the impossible.



There I was, a skinny sixteen year old who was completely outmatched, standing toe-to-toe with the best boxer in the state. My head already hurting from the countless blows I’d taken that day, my hands sore from all the punches I’d dished out, and my energy all but completely empty, I put my gloves up and touched hem with my opponents, showing no fear in my eye.
Odds are, just looking at me back then, you would have never guessed that I was a boxer. I didn’t exactly fit the bill. Standing at an even six feet, I was a solid one hundred and forty-five pounds of skin and bone, with scrawny arms, and a lanky body frame. I certainly didn’t look anything like a boxer, but I had the heart of a world champion.
My mother never wanted me to box, so I only got to enter one real tournament, with kids from all over the state. I felt out of place. Here came kids way younger than me that had three times my boxing ability. Being sixteen, I was forced into a sixteen to eighteen year old division, meaning that I was one of the youngest guys in my division. However, weighing in at one-forty-five did help me a little, since the cutoff for the tournament welterweight division was one-fifty-five.
Nonetheless I looked completely out of place. When they called all of us entering the tournament in our division over to be weighed, there was a total of sixteen of us, and I was the scrawniest of them all. I looked at all of the shorter, stronger fighters, and thought to myself, “What on Earth am I doing here?”
            Everybody was right; I was crazy for wanting to enter that tournament, but nevertheless, I was determined. I had something to prove to everybody, and I wasn’t going to miss this one great chance to do it- I was no joke.
            This was the final round of the tournament, the big championship match. Three, three minute rounds to determine who the best in the state was, and I was the clear underdog. My opponent was DeMarcus James, the best teen boxer in Kentucky, and I was totally outmatched. The two of us couldn’t have looked more different when we walked to our corners. DeMarcus, DJ, as they called him was a little bit shorter, with dark black skin, and giant boaconstricter arms. He certainly fit the bill of a hard puncher, and looked like a true fighter.
            I was a lanky kid, with light skin, and toothpick arms and legs. I was fast, but that was about it. Honestly, I had no idea how I had gotten that far.
            My first fight was against a kid named Mark Jefferson. He was from Louisville and a lot more talented than I was. Mark looked at me from across the ring and gave me a wink. He was cocky at the weigh-in, talking the whole way through. Bragging about his regional titles, and flaunting his new gloves.
            “These are Reyes,” he said.” One punch with these and it’s lights out.”
            I looked down at my borrowed Everlast gloves, partly worn out with the leather beginning to peel off. My old, used headgear smelled like sweat as I put it on, and my shoes felt a little to tight, my shorts were a little too big, and I was nervous, shaking as I waited for the moment that the bell would ring and the match would begin. The first round of the tournament was only one round, three minutes. That’s all the time I had to prove to the judges that I had won.
            My heart jumped as the bell rang and I crawled out of my corner, meeting Mark in the center of the ring. I put out my glove, and he touched it, signaling that the fight had officially begun for us two. I started to move around, dodging him, but not throwing any punches of my own. Then I heard Mac, my trainer.
            “Jab, Seth, jab him, then move.”
            Mac had a scratchy old voice, but he could lift up above the noise of the small crowd watching me. I looked at Mark in the eyes, and I could see the frustration in them from not connecting on me yet.
            He lifted his mouthpiece a bit, and the talk began, “Come on newbie, what are you running from? What are you scared of? You know you can’t win, so just let me knock you out.”
            This was my signal, my tipping point. Everybody had been telling me for months about how my boxing was a joke, and I wasn’t bout to take it anymore. I snapped a jab and popped him right on the nose. Suddenly, he stopped talking. I stepped out of the way of his counter and flashed two more right hand jabs in his face.
            “Stupid southpaw,” he scoffed. I guess it is hard facing a left-hander. They do everything backwards, and that was my one great advantage.
            The adrenaline took over from that point, throwing punches, lading them in furies. He couldn’t stand it. He hit me, but it wasn’t near as hard as what he talked it up to be. I took his punches and just kept advancing on him, finally forcing him into the corner, pounding him big left hooks, and rights to the body. One after another, pounding him with punch after punch after punch after punch, I didn’t let up. Mac yelling in my corner, “Give it to him! Let him have it!”
            Finally the bell rang. I went to my corner and received my congratulations. I knew I had won. They knew I had won. Everybody knew I had won. The ring announcer came up to the stage to call in the judges results.
            “Ladies and Gentlemen, all judges score to winner, ten to nine, in unanimous decision to Seth Forrest.” He grabbed my glove and raised it into the air. I couldn’t believe it. I had won.
            Round one with DJ was like three minutes of trying to fight a gorilla. I had a bloody nose, and my lip was almost totally swollen. Usually they don’t let fighters in teen boxing tournaments continue with that type of damage, but I guess that these doctors just didn’t care.
            Mac kept pleading for me to stop. “You still got plenty of tournaments left Seth. Going back in there is suicide.”
            I wasn’t quitting for anybody. I didn’t care what happened to me; I was finishing that fight. Ding, round two began. I rose off my stool slowly, painfully popping my mouthpiece back in, and going out to the center of the ring.
            DJ seemed almost shocked to see me. I guess he thought that he had done enough to make me quit, but I was different than his other opponents- I didn’t quit. He nodded his head at me, almost in respect to the fact that I had gotten back off the stool when most fighters wouldn’t have.
            Touching gloves, we began round two. I came out jabbing, but with little success. He was faster than me, and stronger than me, and he knew it. DJ swung with a hard right that barely missed, but followed it up with a jab that popped me right on my swollen lip. Then two more jabs, and right hand. I was becoming his punching bag more than his opponent. He kept it coming, connecting with all he had, but I wouldn’t go down. Bam, a jab right in the nose, the bitter-sweet smell of leather flooding my blood soaked nose. DJ was like a dog that had been fed too much raw meat. When he smelled blood, he went in for the kill, and he didn’t back down until he got it.
            I fought back with what I could, hard left hooks to the chin, and crisp jabs, but DJ seemed almost unharmed. Finally, I threw a prayer-haymaker, and landed it square on his jaw. He wobbled a bit, but it wasn’t anywhere near enough to knock him out. This got me going. I followed it u with a coupe of hard punches, landing them in perfect success, but then the worst thing that could happen, did happen.
            DJ got mad. When he regained his footing he came back with all he had, knocking my head off with hard punches. It felt like he had bricks in his gloves he was throwing so hard. Finally, I went down. I remember the ring spinning beneath my feet, and then the crowd spinning, everything spinning, then I fell and all I could see was the dim bulbs hanging from the ceiling, swinging back in forth in my vision. It was almost like seeing little birdies.
            I could hear the count; hear Mac screaming for me to get back up. I closed my eyes, and thought to myself, “They were right; he is too much for me.”
            I opened my eyes and heard the ref counting, six, seven, eight. It was over. I knew it was over. DJ had his hands in the air, celebrating his victory. I felt a tear roll out of my eye. I let myself down. Nine, tuh-ding. Then I heard it.
            “Saved by the bell, no knockout, no knockout!”
            My second fight was set to be against a kid named George Hermano, a rich Italian from Lexington, who was famous for always having the best trainers, the best doctors, the best equipment. He was a fighter built on money. It would have been a nice match up, a little skinny kid from southeastern Kentucky, and a rich city slicker. A classic case of The American Dream VS the Rich, it would’ve been like Ric Flair VS Dusty Rhodes all over again.
            The fight, unfortunately, was cancelled. George had suffered a pretty bad broken nose in his first fight. So bad, that he couldn’t continue in the tournament. I had been given a free pass to the final four.
            “Listen here Seth, we got lucky last round, super-lucky, but believe it or not we can win this thing,” Mac explained in the corner in-between rounds. “You hit him hard last time and he knows it. I seriously think you can knock this guy out.”
            I looked across the ring at DJ. He didn’t look much better than I did, blood staining the water he was spitting out red, and his nose trickling blood. He looked tired, and most of all, he looked vulnerable.
            The last fight before the championship was no easy contest. “Big” Mike Hernandez was one of the biggest guys in our weight division. He was a Mexican, the son of an immigrant that had moved to Lexington in search of work. He had big muscles and a tough-looking face.
            I had one round to beat him in, and I was going to give it all to do it in. I started out measuring him up with jabs, but he fast. It’s never good to be going up against a guy who’s both big and fast. It’s pretty much suicide. Finally I did the only thing I could do with him, stand toe-to-toe and slug him. We traded hard blows for almost an entire minute, pounding each others faces in until we could barely take anymore. He tried to take my head off, throwing hard hooks, while I focused n quick combination straight punches. I started throwing hard rights to his body which really hurt him. Then finally, I got him with a hard left to his chin, slinging blood and spit from his mouth, and taking away some of his footing. He tried to grab me, and clinch to hang on for the rest of the fight, but I got in close with him and hit his ribs with blistering right hands, than eventually took the wind out of him, then in the amazement of everybody watching, Big went crashing down the canvas. A loud thud, then a ruble as the shockwave sent off by his body went rumbling through the ring.
            He got up on a knee at three, sweat dripping from his forehead, blood coming out of his mouth. Breathing heavily, he climbed to his feet just before the final bell rang.
            He reached out and hugged me, something that my first opponent didn’t do.
            “Great fight,” he said to me. “Now get DJ.”
            Our gloves met with an almost silent click in the center of the ring. I looked almost dead, blood pouring out of my nose and onto my gloves and shorts. My face was swollen and the only thing I could taste was blood. The only thing I could smell was blood. We stood there, toe-to-toe, neither of us throwing a single punch for a few seconds, admiring that we were both still there. Finally he broke the ice, slinging a wild right hand that nearly missed taking my chin off. I smacked him with a hard left hand to counter, and then stepped to the left, dodging another one of his rights.
            I kept outworking him, moving, sticking, punching, landing, but DJ wasn’t the type to be kept down for long. He came at me with all he had for one last run, slamming my face and my ribs with everything he had, but I would not go down again.
            I kept hitting him back, unleashing everything I had left, getting rid of all the rage I felt from being laughed at for wanting to box, finally proving myself. I knew that there wasn’t much time left, so I started pounding him with all I had. Hard left after hard left after hard left to his face, then to his body, he couldn’t take much more. All the running, all the punching, all the training had finally paid off. All those days I ran on the highway with the cold winter air filling my lungs, all those days I punched for endless hours into a heavy bag in my basement, all the time I had spent working and all the teasing I got, they were all about to pay off.
            I swung one last prayer left hand that knocked him flat on his back. The crowd stood up and cheered. I went to my corner to wait on the count, blood pouring from my nose and my mouth. One-two-three, Mac slapped me on the back, almost taking my legs out from underneath me.
            Four-five-six, Big Mike raised his hands in unbelief on the side of the ring. Seven-eight-nine, and in finality, the ref let out one last count, and the fight was over.
            Immediately the crowd jumped to its feet and I was lifted off of mine as Mac raised me into the air. I spat out my blood-soaked mouthpiece and raised my gloves high in the air. I was a champ.

© 2009 Ryan D. Mosley

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a good story, it kept me entertained. there are some grammar things goin on, but just it just needs a little proffreading. its got potential.

Posted 14 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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Added on February 10, 2009


Ryan D. Mosley
Ryan D. Mosley

Emmalena, KY

I'm a pretty cool dude. I'm overly hyperactive. I can't sit still very long. I like to write. I like to read stuff when it's appealing to me. I write just about everything. My stuff's not anything bri.. more..