Showtime at the new Alliance Training Center on Main Street

Hoorah for these modern day group of American Heroes. Without these volunteer USA Amateur Boxing officials (5 judges, a head of officials, time-keeper, clerk, plus the all important physician, we wouldn’t have been able to witness Saturday’s show at the Alliance Training Center. (l to r) Will White, Willie Kuhn, Cynthia Guerrero, Hondo Fontane, Art Wilson, Valerie Hernandez, Robert Hernandez, Andrew Moreno (plus their back-ups).

On Saturday, July 15, 2017, the newest Alliance Training Center (as the song states) “down on Main Street” was again hosting an LBC 44 USA Amateur Boxing Show at their downtown location, just six blocks from where the San Diego Padres baseball team was getting set to play the nefarious San Francisco Giants at Petco Park. This new mega facility was hosting their second show in less than three months with 12 gyms participating, six local and six from out-of-town.


In Bout #1, it was 14-year-old Isaiah Torres (89.6 lbs., with a ton of experience and accolades) from Brawley, Calif. and training at the Westmorland Boxing Gym in Westmorland, securing the win over 12-year-old Fernando Lopez (88.4 lbs.) from Nevarez Boxing, Vista, Calif. With Torres having not only an age and height advantage, plus a big difference in experience level (Torres began to box at the age of seven), you can put this bout in the mismatched column.

In Bout #1, Isaiah Torres (red gloves) from the Westmorland Boxing Gym, Westmorland, used his machine gun delivery to overwhelm Fernando Lopez (blue gloves). It wasn’t until much later that Lopez finally came up with his own strategy of scoring and began to jettison in and out to match Torres’ output.

At the conclusion of Bout #1, referee Andrew Moreno raised the arm of the victorious Isaiah Torres who got the win over the dispirited Fernando Lopez (r).

The combatants in Bout #1 (r to l), Isaiah Torres, the winner, and Fernando Lopez have one last photo taken with Fernando Lopez’s coach Bernie Nevarez.

In Bout #2, it was 14-year-old Christa Aquino (90 lbs.) from the host gym, the Alliance Training Center, getting the best of 13-year-old Chantel Navarro (91.8 lbs.) from Glendale, Calif. who trains at the nearby Pasadena Boxing Club.

In the above panels, you can get a gist of the back and forth struggle between Christa “The Chosen One” Aquino (blue gloves) and Chantel Navarro (red gloves) from Glendale, California who trains at the Pasadena Boxing Club.

At the conclusion of Bout #2, Christa Aquino of the host gym, the Alliance Training Center, has her arm raised in victory by referee Andrew Moreno after her decision victory over Chantel Navarro.

In Bout #3, it was 17-year-old Brandon Cruz (133.4 lbs.) from the Bound Boxing Academy battling 16-year-old Jose Chollet (130 lbs.) from the Bomber Squad Academy of El Cajon, Calif. Being so competitive, this bout had everyone’s attention. From the outset, both boxers were landing some heavy blows. As has been the case, Cruz made certain to land a higher punch count to ensure the win. At Saturday’s show, there was an announcement stating Cruz will be making his professional debut on Friday, August 18th on the next Borizteca Boxing Management Group show at the Salon Mezzanine in Tijuana, B. C., Mexico.

Bout #4, a classic back and forth struggle between Brandon Cruz of the Bound Boxing Academy (red) and Jose Chollet (blue) from the Bomber Squad Academy had everyone’s attention. All photos: Jim Wyatt

At the end of this great match between Cruz (l) and Jose Chollet (r), we see referee Hondo Fontane raising the arm of the victorious Brandon Cruz.

As if to issue a warning to all future opponents, like “You mess with one of us, you mess with all of us!!!!” In unison, the members of the Chollet family turned their back to the crowd to show off their shirts that read, “Team Chollet”.

In Bout #4, they had 12-year-old Anthony Cabral (71 lbs.), going up against the less experienced 11-year-old Gavin Mitchell (67.8 lbs.) from Alliance who was making his Amateur boxing debut. Even though Cabral dominated the scoring, Mitchell never gave up and certainly made his presence known in the final stanza.

In Bout #5, it was 17-year-old Daniel Remigio from the Alliance Training Center (128 lbs. pounds) versus 18-year-old Jesus Castillo from the Jackie Nava Gym, Tijuana (135 pounds). Even though both boxers had a ton of experience, the weight and size difference was dramatic and it showed. So, as you can imagine, the taller, bigger Castillo had his way in this match.

(bottom) Boxers Daniel Remigio from the Alliance Training Center (red trunks) and Jesus Castillo from the Jackie Nava Boxing Gym, Tijuana, B. C., Mexico await the judges’ scores which had Castillo winning the match. (bottom) On hand to assist in the presentation of the trophy and medal – Christa Aquino (r).

In Bout #6, they had 17-year-old Aron Avila (123.2 lbs.) from the Jackie Nava Boxing Gym, Tijuana, taking on 17-year-old Jorge Chavez from the National City CYAC (120.6 pounds). In this one, you had Chavez making his mark by working well on the inside while the taller Avila failed to work his magic on the outside.

Not to make waves, but some of Aron Avila’s mates were joking around and said Avila’s girlfriend (shown here) is a better boxer. Avila, who only recently switched over to training at the Jackie Nava Boxing Gym in Tijuana, hopes to improve on his an already sterling record.

WBC champion Jackie Nava (shown here) opened her own boxing gym in one of the roughest neighborhoods in Tijuana “to do her part” in helping the city’s youth. She can help big time by getting Aron Avila back on his winning streak.

In Bout #7, it was 14-year-old Carlos Smith (red gloves) from the Alliance Training Center (118.8 pounds) versus 15-year-old Efrain Carprera (blue gloves) from the Raincross Boxing Academy in Riverside, Calif. (116.2 pounds).

At the conclusion of Bout #7, referee Andrew Moreno raises the arm of the victorious Efrain Carprera from the Raincross Boxing Academy, Riverside. 

In Bout #8, they had 20-year-old Kyle Erwin of Nevarez Boxing (144.2 lbs.) going up against 17-year-old Andres Burgara from the Magnifico Boxing Club in Southgate, Calif. (143.8 pounds with 9 bouts). This was another of your classic toe-to-toe matches from start to finish. Nothing could prepare Burgara for the tough, nonstop fury of Erwin who simply outmuscled his opponent.

At the conclusion of Bout #8, we see referee Hondo Fontane raising the arm of the victorious Kyle Erwin of the Nevarez Boxing Fitness Center in Vista, Calif.

(bottom photo) The two boxers and their coaches from the Magnifico Boxing Gym, Southgate, Calif. pose for one last photo before heading back home.

In Bout #9, it was 22-year-old Bruno Borges of the Alliance Training Center, a well respected WCK Muaythai Champion, competing in just his second USA Amateur Boxing Show. His opponent was 20-year-old Mariano Canseco (138.6 Lbs.) who was making his amateur debut. The bout lasted all of five seconds, or to be more specific, the time it takes for two boxers to throw a total of four punches. That’s how long it took Mr. Borges to dispose of Mr. Canseco. Canseco threw two jabs and then failed to pull back his right hand to the defensive, guard position. Borges followed Canseco’s punches with a two punch combination, the right jab followed by his powerful left that landed flush on Canseco’s chin and sent him literally flying backward to have a seat on the canvas. Sitting there, it appeared he was dazed and unable to get focus on what just happened. Taking no chances, referee Hondo Fontane did the right thing and immediately stopped the bout and called for the physician to examine Canseco.

You could say, Mariano Canseco from the Nevarez Boxing Club, sitting there on the canvas, never had a chance against Bruno Borges of the Alliance Training Center only lasted a total of five seconds. (top photo) The couple sitting in the first row, directly behind Canseco, was so amazed at what happened that their arms went up in disbelief as if to say, “Do you believe what we just saw?” Answer: “Most likely the fastest knockout ever.”

Referee Hondo Fontan checks and rechecks with the boxer and coaches to see if Mariano Canseco is okay.

After everyone settled down, the ref Hondo Fontane proceeded with the Trophy and Medal presentation with an assist from boxing standout Jose Chollet (left).

In Bout #10, it was 27-year-old Bryan Dominquez (142.4 pounds) from the Undisputed Downtown Gym taking on the much taller 25-year-old Brandon Neal from the Alliance Training Center (148.4 pounds). Never flinching from his game plan, Neal showed off both accuracy and quick hands while doing a masterful job in his debut.

At the conclusion of Bout #10, we see referee Hondo Fontane raising the arm of the victorious Brandon Neal (r) from the Alliance Training Center. Assisting in the presentation of the trophy and medal was Brandon Cruz who just so happened to have tickets for sale for his August 18th Pro debut in Tijuana.

In Bout #11, they featured two bangers 17-year-old Cesar Jimenez from the Raincross Boxing Academy (131.2 pounds) taking on 17-year-old Jose Rodriguez from the Magnifico Boxing Gym in Southgate, Calif. (133 pounds).

In this bout, Jose Rodriguez (red headgear) got himself in deep trouble after clearly hitting his opponent Cesar Jimenez in the back of the head, not once but twice. As a result of this transgression, the referee stopped the action and penalized Rodriguez a point. With this fight being so close, no doubt that point deduction cost Rodriguez an opportunity to win the fight.

In Bout #12, they had 21-year-old David Gates of the Alliance Training Center (161.4 pounds) taking on 22-year-old Joshua Rivera from the Tiger Smalls Boxing Team at One Training Center in Spring Valley, Calif. (159.4 pounds). After getting settled in, Gates and his stiff jab took over to earn him the easy victory.

After David Gates, the winner of the final bout, was presented his trophy, the two coordinators/organizers of the show, coach Sergio Melendrez (l) and coach Ulises Zumaya (r) came forward to thank everyone for attending.

Celebrities in attendance were many but none as exuberant, lively, animated as the two daughters of the famed Mixed Martial Artist Danny Martinez. Be careful though, the family is still coping with the news the San Diego Chargers left town to play in the City of Angels.

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