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USA Boxing's 2018 Metropolitan Qualifiers Pass the Halfway Point on the Road to Madison Square G

Operating under the umbrella of USA Boxing, the sanctioning body for amateur and Olympic level boxing the the United States, the Metropolitan Association has passed the halfway mark in its 2018 Metropolitan Qualifiers. The Metropolitan Qualifiers consist of 15 separate boxing events held throughout the New York Metropolitan region over a seven week period in March and April. These bouts, scheduled at venues throughout the metropolitan region, lead to the Metropolitan Championship Finals on April 20th at Madison Square Garden and serve as qualifying events for participation in one of two national championship tournaments.

Above: New York's legendary trainer Willie Soto finishing-up pre-fight preparations. Photo Credit: Olivia Rosenberg

This year’s Metropolitan Qualifiers have over 600 athletes competing, both men and women, ranging in age from 8 years old through masters level, and include boxers from all five NYC boroughs and the eight surrounding counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Dutchess, Orange, Sullivan and Ulster. For those competing in the 8 – 18 year old age group, the ultimate goal is a chance to qualify for the Junior National Olympics which will take place in Charleston, West Virginia on June 24-30. For those fighting in the 19 – 40 year old group, the prize will be a shot at the National Golden Gloves Tournament scheduled for May 13 in Omaha Nebraska. This year's Metropolitan Qualifiers kicked off on March 1st at the Yonkers PAL and, while Mother Nature unleashed her fury with a rare “bomb cyclone”, twenty amateur athletes unleashed their fury in the ring in ten very closely contested bouts, nine going the distance and three decided by split decision. The action picked right up the following evening at Manhattan’s Church Street Boxing with eight more bouts. The contests continue through April 15th culminating in the April 20th finals at MSG.

Above: Success involves listening to and accepting advice on strategy from the corners between rounds. Photo Credit: Olivia Rosenberg

MetroSports Magazine was on-hand at the world famous Gleason's Gym for the March 24th Qualifier which showcased the talents of the 178 pound light heavyweight novice and 201+ pound super heavyweight novice class boxers. This capped off a busy week for the Tournament which hosted earlier stops at The New York Athletic Club on Thursday, and the Yonkers PAL on Friday. Boxing is a sport that requires strength, speed, and both cardiovascular and muscular endurance to maintain the pace of a fight over the course of three two-minute rounds, or more, as one progresses in the sport. Knowledge of one's opponent, and the intellectual ability to read and counter the opponents strategy, are equally important to success in the sport. It's no mystery why boxing has long been referred to as "the sweet science."

Above: Some of Saturday night's action at Gleason's Gym. Photo Credit: Olivia Rosenberg

Achieving victory this week were the following athletes:

From the 152 pound welterweights at The New York Athletic Club

  • Arnold Gonzalez (Everybody Fights) defeated Emmanuel Ledesma (John’s Gym) – UD

  • Francisco Frometa (Unattached) defeated Ludovic Arrata (Universal BC) – UD

  • Alex Vargas (Finest Fitness) defeated Jose Davila (El Maestro BC) – UD

  • Cristian Cangelosi (Atlas Cops & Kids) defeated Joseph Consiglio (Westbury BC) – UD

  • Michael Calvin (Royals BC) defeated Steven Mitchell (Starrett City BC) – ABD, 2nd Round

  • Reshat Mati (Atlas Cops & Kids) defeated Angel Cotto (Mt. Vernon BC) – UD

  • Dezmond Lucas (John’s Gym) defeated Lee Iglesias (Gym X) – UD

  • Dzhonibek Nazriev (Mendez BC) defeated Michael Hughes (Church Street BC) – SD

RSC=Referee Stops Contest; SD=Split Decision; UD=Unanimous Decision; BC=Boxing Club; ABD=Abandonment

From the 141-pound Female bouts at the Yonkers PAL

  • Sarah Thomas (Unattached) defeated Morgan Kendall (Unattached) – SD

  • Christella Cepeda (Yonkers YMCA) defeated Deborah Spoto (PacPlex BC) – RSC, 1st Round

  • Macarena Soto (Freeport PAL) defeated Conaugh Cutler (Mendez BC) – UD

  • Alexis Morant (Mendez BC) defeated Ericka Gordon (Church Street BC) – UD

From the 178-pound Open bouts at the Yonkers PAL

  • Afunwa King (El Maestro BC) defeated Kevin Lubin (Suffolk PAL) – by walkover

  • Matthew Klingerman (John’s Gym) defeated Anton Levin (Green Fitness) – ABD, 3rd Round

  • Joseph Negron (Mendez BC) defeated Jay Torres (Woodside BC) – UD

  • Kristian Shytani (Morris Park BC) defeated Joel Allen (Atlas Cops & Kids) – UD

From the 119-pound Female bouts at the Yonkers PAL

  • Imam James (Gleason’s Gym) defeated Laura Lunch (Overthrow) – UD

From the 123-pound Novice bouts at the Yonkers PAL

  • Laurence Bautista (Yonkers PAL) defeated Al Azeem Asheer (Green Fitness) – UD

  • Isaias Deaza (John’s Gym) defeated Angel Mendez (Starrett City BC) – RSC, 1st Round

  • Justice Bland (PacPlex BC) defeated Brett O’Connor (Two Champs BC) – UD

  • Andrew Bueno (Eastern Queens BC) defeated Frank Morganti (Gleason’s Gym) – UD

From the 178-pound Novice bouts at Gleason's Gym

  • Edwing Lachapelle (New Bed Stuy BC) defeated Yovan Pena (Gym X) – UD

  • Curl Aitcheson (Main Street BC) defeated Enyel Salas (Mendez BC) – UD

  • Joel Telles (Sweatbox BC) defeated Robert Davies (NYAC BC) – by walkover

  • Fabio Guzman (Brotherhood BC) defeated Kingsley Sarfo-Kantanka (John’s Gym) – UD

  • Nicholas Daperis (PacPlex BC) defeated Joshua Peters (Gym X) – RSC, 1st Round

From the 201-pound Novice bouts at Gleason's Gym

  • George Kantzian (Unattached) defeated Christian Moran (Westbury BC) – RSC, 2nd Round

  • Jermaine Webb (Starrett City BC) defeated Nicholas Perdomo (Westbury BC) – by walkover

  • Anthony Bulluck (Unattached) defeated Patrick O’Rourke (South Box) – RSC, 1st Round

  • Calvin Belgrave (Starrett City BC) defeated Robert Francis (Main Street BC) – SD

From the 201+ pound Novice bouts at Gleason's Gym

  • Jeremiah Gurley (Gleason’s Gym) defeated Abraham Dickey III (Unattached) – RSC, 1st Round

  • Pryce Taylor (Atlas Cops & Kids BC) defeated Francisco Paulino (Eastern Queens BC) – UD

The action continues with upcoming stops of the 2018 Metropolitan Qualifiers on:

March 29th. 7:30 pm at John's Gym. 1703 Jerome Avenue, Bronx NY

March 31st. 6:00 pm at International Boxing. 1712 Weirfield Avenue, Ridgewood NY

April 5th. 7:00 pm at NYPD Roller Jam. 236 Richmond Valley Road, Staten Island NY

April 6th. 7:30 pm at Main Street Gym. 156 Gramatan Avenue, Mt. Vernon, NY

April 7th. 6:00 pm at Finest Fitness. 208 East Main Street, Patchogue, NY

April 13th. 7:00 pm at Elmcor. 107-20 Northern Blvd, Corona NY

April 15th. 2:00 pm at International Boxing. 1712 Weirfield Avenue, Ridgewood NY

April 20th. 6:00pm at Madison Square Garden

MetroSports Magazine will provide further coverage of the 2018 Metropolitan Qualifiers - Road to the Garden in our March-April issue due out during the first week of April and here in our online postings as the Tournament moves towards a close on April 20th.

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