USA Amateur Junior Olympic Qualifiers at Intensity MMA

April 18, 2015 1 Comment
Teammates plus coaches Travis Stuckey and David Love join Contraris Strozier for a photo to celebrate the victory. All photos: Jim Wyatt

Teammates plus coaches Travis Stuckey (l) and David Love (r) join Contravis Strozier for a photo to celebrate his victory. All photos: Jim Wyatt

The latest USA Amateur Boxing Show took place Saturday, April 18, 2015 at the Intensity MMA gym in South San Diego. This was a special show since it was first leg of the JO Olympics regional qualifiers. The results from the eight exciting bouts are as follows:

In Bout #1, it was 16 year-old Jose Meza of Bound Boxing, Chula Vista, Calif. (118 pounds) coming away with the decision victory over 16 year-old Jason Meza of The Arena, Point Loma, San Diego, Calif. (118 pounds).

At the conclusion of Bout #1, it was Jose Meza of the Bound Boxing Academy (r) having his arm raised in victory by referee Will White after he defeated Jason Meza of The Arena.

(bottom, left) At the conclusion of Bout #1, Jose Meza of the Bound Boxing Academy, Chula Vista (r) had his arm raised in victory by referee Will White after he defeated Jason Meza of The Arena, San Diego, California.

In Bout #2, it was 16 year-old Jasmine Hernandez of the National City CYAC (123.2 pounds) coming away with the victory over 16 year-old southpaw Jessica Juarez, Unattached, San Diego (122.6 pounds). Even though the judges favored Hernandez, it appeared to this boxing pundit that the bout was far too close to determine a definitive winner. After the judges had Hernandez ahead in both rounds one and two, Juarez, far and away finished the bout stronger with the harder and cleaner shots.

After Jessica Juarez slips the left jab, she is ready to unload her straight left on her opponent Jasmine Hernandez. punch to land her straight left

Jessica Juarez (r) slips the jab then makes ready to unload her straight left on her opponent Jasmine Hernandez while referee Will White surveys the contest.

In this exchange it's all about smarts and who has the quicker hands.

In this exchange it was all about smarts and who had the quicker hands.

At the conclusion of Bout #2, it was Jasmine Hernandez (l) having her arm raised in victory by referee Will White after she defeated Jessica Juarez.

At the conclusion of Bout #2, Jasmine Hernandez had her arm raised in victory by referee Will White after defeating Jessica Juarez. (photo, right) Hernandez’s proud coach Jason Haines poses for a photo with his star boxer.

Bout #3 saw 25 year-old Contravis Strozier of the Gladiator School of Boxing, Spring Valley (126.2 pounds) pull the upset of the qualifying bouts by gaining the decision victory over 24 year-old Robert Lopez of the Golden Hands Boxing Team, Chula Vista, Calif. (128.4 pounds).

This match, very similar to the Hernandez vs. Juarez bout, was won in the early rounds by landing more of the cleaner, straighter, albeit less damaging blows and then being able to withstand the harder, power shots in the closing round.6-bt3a

In Bout #3, the combatants Contraris Strozier (r) and Robert Lopez (l) were caught on camera throwing low blows.

In Bout #3, both Contravis Strozier (r) and Robert Lopez (l) were caught on camera throwing low blows.

Contraris Strozier (l) has his arm raised in victory by referee Rick Ley after he defeated Robert Lopez in Bout #3.

(bottom, left) Contravis Strozier has his arm raised in victory by referee Rick Ley after defeating Robert Lopez in Bout #3.

After Mr. Strozier started to get all puffy about his victory, his coach offers some words of wisdom, "Son, you still have a long way to go and a lot to learn."

Right when his boxer was getting all full of himself in regards to the victory, coach David Love, a former boxing great, was there to bring him back down to earth and offer some words of advice, “Son, you still have a long way to go and a lot to learn. Just like in the ring, you have to keep everything in balance.”

From the outset of Bout #4, 17 year-old Bryan Garcia (157.3 pounds) from the United Boxing and his opponent 17 year-old Favian Vaca (161.2 pounds, unattached) were swinging for the fences. The more accomplished Garcia found his range early and after each Vaca swing and a miss, he would follow with a fully leveraged punch and before anyone knew it, Mr. Vaca was on his back, out cold – no need for a 10 count.6-bt4a

After taking several direct hits, referee Rick Ley gives Favian Vaca an 8-count.

After taking several direct hits, the referee issues Favian Vaca an 8-count.

In Bout #4, Bryan Garcia of the United Boxing & Fitness Gym knocked his opponent Favian Vaca out cold. All photos: Jim Wyatt

In Bout #4, Bryan Garcia of the United Boxing & Fitness Gym knocked his opponent Favian Vaca out cold. All photos: Jim Wyatt

In Bout #4, it was Bryan Garcia (l) of the United Boxing and Fitness Gym getting the knockout victory over Favian Vaca.

In Bout #4, it was Bryan Garcia (l) of United Boxing and Fitness securing the knockout victory of Favian Vaca (r).

Bout #5 didn’t end with a knockout, but it too was an old fashion donnybrook between two sluggers – 15 year-old Randel Salazar (111.4 pounds) of the Pride of San Diego Gym, Bonita, Calif. and Jorge Chavez (115.4 pounds) of the National City CYAC. Unlike Mr. Floyd Mayweather Jr., neither Salazar or Chavez employed any defense. Back and forth they wailed at each other. The majority of their blows would have KO’d most opponents, but not these tough guys. The close decision victory went to Salazar. 

Bout #5, what a battle and the fact that Jorge Chavez and Randall Salazar had the same color head gear, the same color boxing shorts, this one had to be a difficult contest to judging the Jorge Chavez versus Randall Salazar match.

Bout #5, a battle royale between Jorge Chavez (red gloves) and Randel Salazar (blue gloves) had the same color head gear, same color shirt and similar boxing shorts. It must have made judging the contest difficult.

At the conclusion of Bout #5, Randall Salazar (r) has his arm raised in victory by veteran referee Will White. All photos: Jim Wyatt

At the conclusion of Bout #5, Randel Salazar (r) has his arm raised in victory by veteran referee Will White. Photo: J. Wyatt

Bout #6 featured two talented nine years olds. Sammy Vences (73.6 pounds) from the Maximum Impact Gym, Oceanside, Calif. and Adrian Mendez of City Boxing, Downtown San Diego, two boxers with not a lot of experience but they sure are quick learners.

The early aggressive style of Vences with his clubbing overhand rights to his opponent’s head established his dominance. Vences won easily by keeping the shorter Mendez either off balance or out of reach.6-Bt6a Sammy Vences

At the conclusion of Bout #6, Sammy Vences (l) has his arm raised in victory by referee Will White after defeating the game Adrian Mendez.

At the conclusion of Bout #6, Sammy Vences (l) has his arm raised in victory by referee Will White after defeating Adrian Mendez.

In Bout #7, it was 16 year-old David Prado of The Arena (14o.6 pounds) going up against the younger but taller 15 year-old Pablo Zepeda of the Pride of San Diego Gym (143.4 pounds). After chasing Zepeda around for two rounds, the bout was stopped after Zepeda lost his mouthpiece for the fourth and final time.

For the most part, the bout was very competitive but Prado was definitely landing the harder blows. Comments from Prado after the bout mentioned he was somewhat bothered by the trickling of blood from his nose which he thought was caused by an accidental head butt. The more aggressive Prado used the tactic of covering up until he could get in close and then he went hard to the body with an occasional uppercut or combination to the head. Since most everyone was enthralled in this match, it’s a shame Zepeda had to deal with that mouthpiece, the never to be seen again flying mouthpiece.   6-Bt7a David Prado ov Pablo Zepeda

After Pablo Zepeda was disqualified for repeatedly losing his mouthpiece, David Prado (r) has his arm raised in victory by referee Rick Ley.

After Pablo Zepeda was disqualified for repeatedly losing his mouthpiece, David Prado (r) had his arm raised in victory by referee Rick Ley.

6- bt7d David Prado's arm goes up

Not to draw an early comparison but Mr. Prado, not only has the look but the demeanor that reminds you, or at least reminds this boxing pundit, of Saul “Canelo” Alvarez.

Not to draw an early comparison but David Prado does have this look and demeanor that reminds you, or at least reminds this boxing pundit, of Saul Alvarez.

In the final bout, Bout #8, it was 16 year-old Brandon Cruz of the Pride of San Diego (128.8 pounds) getting the best of 15 year-old Martin Ramirez of the Bound Boxing Academy, Chula Vista (125.2 pounds) in another of his slick, well contested matches. Cruz used both his reach advantage and the stiff jab to keep the shorter Ramirez at bay until which time he wanted to land a solid counter.6- bt8a Brandon Cruz6-bt8-b Brandon Cruz

At the conclusion of bout #8, Brandon Cruz (l) has his arm raised in victory by referee Rick Ley after Cruz defeated Martin Ramirez. Photos: Jim Wyatt

At the conclusion of bout #8, Brandon Cruz (l) has his arm raised in victory by referee Rick Ley after he defeated Martin Ramirez. Photos: Jim Wyatt

The next local USA Amateur show will be on Friday evening, April 24, 2015 at the Bound Boxing Academy, 457 Broadway, Chula Vista, CA 91910. Like this show, the owner of Bound Boxing, Juan Medina Jr., already has more than a few pre-matched bouts ready to provide another exciting night of boxing. First bout is set to start at 7:30 p.m. For further information: (619) 271-1500.

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One Comments to “USA Amateur Junior Olympic Qualifiers at Intensity MMA”
  1. coach Jason Haines sr says:

    I would like to say that my boxer Jasmine Hernandez and her opponent Jessica Juarez did fight a close one as they should. Jasmine being a JO Bronze Medalist and Youth Open Silver Medalist and Jessica being a JO Gold Medalist and Youth Open Silver Medalist. Both of these young ladies are top Jr Female Boxers on the National Level. Everyone should have expected a close bout…..

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