Another packed house at the Sugar Ray Leonard Boxing Center in Palmer Park, MD saw a talented group of boxers advance from the semifinals on Saturday night into the Washington Golden Gloves Championships on Saturday, April 4 at Rosecroft Raceway in Fort Washington, MD.
Let's start with the Open Division and the marquee final four grouping at 165 Pounds. The defending regional champion, Tavon Body (Headbangers), advanced to the finals by winning over Jordan Payne (Woodland). In the other semi, the 2013 regional champ Jerome Featherstone (Unattached) defeated Jason Bell (No Xcuse).
This means the 165 Pound Washington Golden Gloves final will match the last two regional champions in Featherstone and Body. What's more, this is a rematch from last year's championship in which Body defeated Featherstone.
In the 141 Pound bracket, Brian Avelar (Sugar Ray Leonard) won his semi-final against Emmanuel Rodriguez (Down Under). Avelar will have a daunting task in the finals when he matches up against 141-pound national champion Gary Antuanne Russell (Enigma). Russell won his bout by walkover on Saturday.
Avelar's older brother, Tommy (Sugar Ray Leonard), advanced to the finals by winning a decision over Rayvon Drayton (Pound For Pound) at 132 Pounds. Tommy Avelar will face Keeshawn Williams (The Answer). Williams won a tough contest over Mack Allison IV (Upton).
The 123 Pound final is set as Marcus Wright (Keystone) will face Paul Jerry (Fighting For The Future) on April 4. Wright won his bout over Christopher Glenn (Hagerstown) while Jerry defeated Hector Soto (Down Under).
Soto's brother Duglas lost his bout at 114 Pounds to Jordan White (Pound For Pound) due to injury in the first round. Duglas Soto suffered an injury to the bridge of his nose earlier in the week but tried to compete, However, soon after the bout with White started, the ringside doctor said he could not continue.
White advances to the finals where he will face former USA number-one ranked 114-pounder Malik Jackson (Limelite) who drew a bye in the tournament.
In the 152 Pound semis, Shynggskhan Tazhibay (Headbangers) advanced to the finals by defeating Nigel Fennell (Down Under). No word yet on who Tazhibay will face in the finals. At 201 Pounds, Malik Titus (Upton) won his semifinal over Daquan Johnson (Sugar Ray). Titus will take on Stephon Morris (UMAR) who won his semifinal bout last Saturday.
Moving now to the Novice Division where there were some outstanding semifinal contests. At 152 Pounds, Sippriano Zeldon (Headbangers) won a great contest over Markee Stokes (UMAR). Zeldon will face David Bakker (Laurel) in the championship bout. Bakker walked over last Saturday.
In the 165 Pound semifinal, Aaron Anderson (Mack Lewis) won an exciting bout over Rashad Kilpatrick (Keystone). Anderson will battle Stephaun Hobbs (The Answer) on April 4.
At 178 Pounds, Ambrose Anderson (Knowledge Boxing) won his semifinal bout over Davon Wheeler (NOMIS). Darryl Lane (Enigma) awaits Anderson in the final. Lane advanced last Saturday.
In the 201+ Pound semis, Timothy Crawford (Sugar Ray) defeated his gym mate, Ralph Alexander to advance to the finals where he will face Jimmy Speros (Olympia), who advanced last Sunday.
The 141 Pound final will be an all-Laurel affair as both Dante Cox and Evgeni Metchenov won their semi final bouts over two UMAR boxers. Cox defeated Joshua Lee while Metchenov won by third-round stoppage over Dorian Bostic.
At 132 Pounds, Stephen Epps (Rosedale) defeated Stephen Blaylock (No Excuse) and will take on Donnell Poe (Old School) in the finals. Poe won by walkover.
In the 123 Pound division, D'Jon Brown (NOMIS) won his semifinal over Jaqueem Hutcherson (Keystone). Brown will take on Delonte Rawlings (Old School) in the final.
Also, Johnathan Surratt (D-Block) moved into the 201 Pound final by walkover and will face Alvin Amana (Lights Out) in the finals. Amana walked over last Saturday.
In the final Junior Division championship bout of the tournament, Keith Cooke (No Xcuse) won the 14-15, 114 Pound title with a win over Philbert Griffith (Sugar Ray Leonard).
We hope to have the complete bout sheet for the Washington Golden Gloves championships later this week. The winners from the Washington finals will advance to the regional championships which will be held on Saturday, April 25 also at Rosecroft.