Fighting in his record fifth Fight To Educate (FTE) charity event, popular welterweight Danny “Bhoy” O’Connor (23-1, 7 KOs) turned in a workmanlike performance for his ninth straight victory, recording a unanimous eight-round decision over Texas invader Raul Tover (11-8-1, 4 KOs) in tonight’s main event, at Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire.
O’Connor, fighting out of Framingham, Massachusetts, was a 2008 US Olympic Team alternate. The popular Irish-American southpaw, co-promoted by DiBella Entertainment and Warriors Boxing, avenged a loss to Tover in the 2005 National PAL Tournament in Oxnard, California.
Now 5-0 (4 KOs) in the FTE, O’Connor easily won on all three judges’ scorcards: 80-73, 79-37, 79-73.
“As I progress in my career,” the 28-year-old O’Connor said, “further and further along, it’s nice to stop and reflect. I made my pro debut here and fought five times in the Fight To Educate. I know the commission, people of Manchester, even the hotel where we stay and the drive to the arena. I have a sense of security here. Hopefully, I’ll have to chance to fight here again next year, and someday maybe I’ll be lucky enough to bring a world title belt here.
“I’m trying to be the most active fighter in this sport (this was his third fight in less than two months). I don’t want to have to get ready when that big call comes, I want to be ready, so that I’m staying active and living a good lifestyle. I’m gaining experience and need that to realize my goal and personal dream.
“I’d been fighting at 140 pounds since I was 15 and it became too hard. I’m a welterweight now and I feel stronger at 147. I could have fought 15 rounds tonight the way I feel. I hired a fight nutritionist. I felt great at the weigh in, during the fight, and even now.”
Hard-hitting Vermont light middleweight Chris Gilbert (10-0, 7 KOs), fighting in his third consecutive FTE, dropped Anthony “The Candyman” Chase (11-2, 4 KOs) three times in the second round, and finished off the Providence fighter in third with a right uppercut to remain undefeated.
Maine light welterweight Brandon “Cannon” Berry (3-0) remained undefeated the hard way as Jesus Javier Cintron (1-4-2) was disqualified in the round for repeated low blows.
Fight To Educate, presented in part this year by Alrich Cabinet, is a unique charity event that combines a love of sports with the vision of assisting children and seniors in need, who with fundraisers like this could be ‘down for the count.’ During the past 11 years, Fight To Educate has raised more than $500,000 in donations benefitting local New Hampshire non-profit organizations.
Proceeds from the 12th annual Fight To Educate benefitted SEE Science Center (www.see-sciencecenter.org), The Bobby Stephens Fund for Education (www.stepheneducationfund.com), and New Horizons for New Hampshire.
This year’s attending Boxing Legends were Aaron “Hawk” Pryor, Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini and “Dangerous” Dana Rosenblatt.
Results of the amateur matches are below.
All bouts were sanctioned by the New Hampshire Boxing & Wrestling Commission.
(all winners listed first for each fight)
Chris Gilbert (10-0, 8 KOs), Windsor, VT LBS.
Anthony Chase (11-2, 4 KOs), Providence, RI
Danny O’Connor (23-1, 7 KOs), Framingham, MA
WDEC8 (80-73, 79-73, 79-73)
Raul Tover (11-8-1, 4 KOs), Mission, TX
Brandon Berry (3-0, 2 KOs), West Forks, ME
Jesus Javier Cintron (1-4-2), Springfield, MA