From Districts to Regionals, the Silver Gloves won’t be getting any easier

On Saturday, November 16, 2019, there were a lot of hearts thumping at the National City CYAC Boxing Club as local USA Amateur Boxers from LBC 44 Cal Border battled it out for the remaining open slots to move on and compete in the Silver Gloves Regionals.
In Bout #1, it was 11-year-old Dray Pascua (red corner, 75 lbs., record 9-4) from the House of Boxing on Reo Drive in nearby Paradise Hills taking on 12-year-old Angel Madrid (blue corner, 76.8 lbs., with the same 9-4 record) from the Backyard Boxing Gym located in Vista.
Early on, both boxers were throwing bombs. The only noticeable difference that you could detect was the fact Madrid was slightly better on defense as he astutely ducked under the majority of Pascua’s heavy artillery by showing better head movement.
That being said, in our sixth photo, we see Pascua landing a bomb squarely on Madrid’s chin.
After the scores were tabulated, the judges had Angel Madrid (blue corner) as their winner.
Bout #2 had 11-year-old Joaquin Cruz (red corner, 77 lbs., record 3-4) from Maxwell Boxing in Miramar, taking on 12-year-old Juan Ramirez (3-2, 80 lbs., blue corner) from the host gym, the National CYAC Boxing Club. From the git-go, Ramirez came out firing and was the first to land a major blow, the left hook above. That punch landed square on Cruz’s chin and had his head spin left. As a result of this punch, the referee issued Cruz a standing 8-count.
Sensing the time was right to go for all the marbles, Ramirez came at Cruz with an all or nothing right uppercut to the chin. To his credit, Cruz weathered that blow and even delivered some swings for the fences himself.
It wasn’t until the final round that Cruz got some payback and started landing his own bombs, like this big overhand right which for a moment stopped Ramirez in his tracks.
Again, we see Joaquin Cruz loading up to land yet another big blow to his opponent’s head.
In the end, the scores had Juan Ramirez (right) winning despite Joaquin’s late comeback.
In Bout #3, it was 13-year-old Jimmy Mendoza, (156.2 lbs., black headgear) from the Bomber’s Squad Academy of El Cajon) taking on 14-year-old Roberto Osoria (157.8 lbs., blue headgear, a veteran of four bouts) from Romo’s Boxing, El Centro, Calif. The “Bebeto” Osoria story is quite a tale. With his family, plus Coach Romo’s help, the young man has not only made great strides in the sport, but he also lost an amazing 37.8 pounds along the way.
Despite his early success against Mendoza, Osoria remained calm and often landed the first blow or an even harder counter which in time had the game Mendoza backing up.
Something you rarely see in boxing: with Osoria’s amazing reflexes and hand to eye co-ordination, we often saw him block Mendoza’s punches with his gloves.
Even though Osoria’s reach advantage was noticeable, it wasn’t until we finally saw referee Andrew Moreno raise his arm in victory, that we got to see the major advantage he held in this match. With the victory, Osoria’s record now goes to 4-1, with 3 KOs.
In Bout #4 it was 13-year-old Isaiah Bernal (right, 119 lbs., Red Gloves, record 58-8) from the same Romo’s Gym in El Centro going up against 14-year-old Dante Hernandez (118.4 lbs., Blue Gloves, record 14-4) from the Bound Boxing Academy of Chula Vista. Without a doubt, this bout had to be the most difficult to score. Both boxers were extremely clever on offense and defense and each had their moments. Hernandez had his best showing in Round two as he kept baiting Bernal and then taking a step back to set him up. Then Bernal, perhaps feeling he was behind on the scorecards, made a very strong finish in the final frame.
In the end, it was Dante Hernandez (l) coming away with his 15th victory against just four defeats and it will be Hernandez now representing LBC 44 CAL Border in the upcoming Silver Gloves Regional Tournament. With the loss, Bernal now drops to 58-9.

During the brief 15-minute intermission, many of the attendees went to a makeshift snack bar to get some snacks. Noticing the unusually high number of youngsters in attendance to cheer on an older sibling, it made sense to go on a scouting expedition for the most photogenic. Below is a collage of the youngsters who proved to be the most photogenic with the most beautiful faces on the Planet. While visiting with these youngsters I imagined a dandy “What if” question: What if we had the event coordinator go around and ask these youngsters this one simple question: “What things could this organization do more creatively to get you to come back to our next show?
The youngsters in this photo collage would certainly have some interesting replies, like: #1 Start inviting celebrity guests like Shrek, Mary Poppins, and Chuck E. Cheese. #2 Have a bathing suit contest. #3 Rent that new Sticky Dodgeball layout, #4 at Intermission have some hotshots like the Mayor dress in those Sumo Wrestling outfits and fight on a foam mat. #5 Have better treats available at Intermission: gummy bears, ice cream cones. #6 What about Inflatable Human Foosball. #7 Set the bar even higher with the new Human Whack a Mole.

After Intermission it was right back to live-action and Bout 5 featuring 10-year-old Joshua Alvarado (5-2), 64 lbs., from the Bound Boxing Academy (Red Corner) taking on 10-year-old Gabriel Bojorquez 66.2 lbs., from the National City CYAC (Blue Corner) was a dandy.

With both rounds one and two almost too close to call, both boxers realized they needed to come up with something extra special in the final round to pull out the victory.

After Bojorquez managed to duck under Alvarado’s straight left, he saw his opening. Like the most sensitive shark smelling blood, Bojorquez saw his opening and came east to west with that fully leveraged overhand right.

Prior to the announcement of the winner, the referee had the youngsters pose for a photo and then had them entertain the crowd with some fancy shadow boxing.

From the applause received, perhaps there were no losers in Bout #5, even though that gold belt for the winner went home with Gabriel Bojorquez.

Bout #6 featured 11-year-old David Silva 83 lbs., from Baja Boxing in the Red Corner, taking on 11-year-old Ivan Sifuentes (6-4) 85.2 lbs., from the Bound Boxing Academy in Chula Vista, Calif. in the Blue Corner. In this one, it was the jubilant Ivan Sifuentes coming away with a decision victory.

Bout #7 featured 15-year-old Jesse Camacho (1-0) 129.8 lbs., from the Baja Boxing Club, Calexico, Calif., taking on 15-year-old Matthew Bojarno (0-2) 134.4 lbs., from the Bomber’s Squad Academy, El Cajon, in the Blue Corner.

This one ended early after Matthew Bojarno (blue gloves) began pounding away at Jesse Camacho (red gloves) and referee Andrew Moreno called for an immediate halt to the action at the 1:16 mark of round #2.

Bout #8 had 12-year-old lefty Chris Balleza 96.4 lbs., from the Bomber Squad Academy of El Cajon, in the Red Corner, taking on 12-year-old Oscar Ramirez 93.8 lbs. in the Blue Corner, from the host gym, the National City Community Youth Athletic Center.

In this extremely close match, with Chris Balleza of the Bomber’s Squad doing better in close and the taller Ramirez from the National City CYAC looking better from the outside, the judges ended up favoring the taller Ramirez by decision.

The Bomber’s Squad of El Cajon led by the Berlin Kerney IV’s family (right) was well represented at this year’s California Border Silver Gloves District Tournament.
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