(MOBILE, ALA.) – Friday’s boxing action moved to a higher level of intensity at the Arthur R. Outlaw Convention Center in Mobile, Ala., as nearly 70 young boxers vied for a berth in the final round at the 2013 Junior Olympic National Championships. The day’s victors featured returning and Junior World Team Open Champions as well as new faces on the national scene.
Just one day after defeating Junior World Team Open champion Jordan White (Waldorf, Md.), Kawelo Alcos (Wapahu, Hawaii) earned his spot in the championship bout with a split decision win over Jeremiah Smotherman (St. Louis, Mo.). Alcos will face Dylan Price (Sicklerville, N.J.) in the pinweight final.
Juliette Ladissa (Bronx, N.Y.) recorded the victory in the lone female light flyweight semifinal bout on Friday night. Ladissa defeated Danika Lara (El Centro, Calif.), 3-0 in their Friday match-up to move on to the light flyweight finals and a bout with Kianna Hernandez (Dallas, Texas).
Vergil Ortiz (Grand Prairie, Texas) moved on to the flyweight final round contest with a unanimous decision in semifinal action on Thursday. Ortiz defeated Keeshawn Williams (Washington DC) to advance on to championship night where he will battle Aaron Morales (Eufala, Okla.).
Junior World Team Open champion Shakur Stevenson (Newark, N.J.) got the present he’d been hoping for on his 16th birthday with a semifinal win. Stevenson is making a second straight trip to the Junior Olympic National Championships finals following a 3-0 victory over Victor Morales, Jr. (Vancouver, Wash.) on Friday. He will face Darren Cunningham (St. Louis, Mo.) for the light flyweight title in Saturday’s finals.
Kristy Rodriguez (Naperville, Ill.) and Odalys Camacho (Bakersfield, Calif.) will compete for the light bantamweight gold medal in Saturday’s action. Both boxers recorded semifinal victories on Friday with Camacho taking a split decision over Mikaila Gutierrez (Kemp, Texas) and Rodriguez defeating Angie Ornelas (Beaverton, Ore.) by a 3-0 margin.
The male bantamweight finale will feature a showdown between defending champion Ruben Villa (Salinas, Calif.) and Junior World Team Open titlist Devin Haney (Las Vegas, Nev.) following tournament runs by both boxers. Haney advanced to the finals with a 2-1 victory over Michael Dutchover (Midland, Texas) in semifinal round action while Villa defeated Logan Yoon (Honolulu, Hawaii) to move on to the bantamweight finale.
In female bantamweight action, emerging star Jayda Thomas (Detroit, Mich.) impressed once again with a dominating victory in her semifinal bout with Katrina Nahe (Antioch, Calif.). Thomas stalked Nahe, landing strong shots en route to a second round TKO victory. She will face off with defending champion Melody Montes (Kissimmee, Fla.) in final round action following Montes’ unanimous decision victory in her bout with Juanita Chavez (Racine, Wis.).
Defending flyweight champion Isidro Ochoa (Fresno, Calif.) earned a berth in his second straight championship bout with a semifinal victory in his new weight division on Friday. Ochoa won a unanimous decision over Gage Campbell (Wauseon, Ohio) in their semifinal contest. He will face off with Junior World Team Open champion Michael Nelson (Mansfield, Ohio) for the featherweight title on Saturday.
The featherweight division was one of the deepest female weight classes in the tournament and Jermesha Poke (St. Louis, Mo.) and Anna Crutchfield (Greenville, S.C.) are the final two boxers left standing. Poke and Crutchfield advanced on to the championship bout with victories over Viviana Malgar (Glen Grove, N.Y.) and Zoe Glass (Lansing, Mich.) respectively.
Junior World Team Open champion Keoni Adric, Jr. (Haleima, Hawaii) will compete for his second national title of the year in the lightweight finals. Adric claimed a split decision victory over Charlie Sheehy (Brisbane, Calif.) in a closely-contest semifinal contest. He will attempt to take his fourth straight victory of the tournament on Saturday when he battles Andres Cortes (Henderson, Nev.) in the championship bout.
Fellow Junior World Team Open champ Iesha Kenney (Alexandria, Va.) won her first bout of the 2013 Junior Olympic National Championships in a lightweight match-up with Siane Moore (St. Louis, Mo.). The win advances Kenney on to a final round contest with the victor on the opposite side of the bracket, Cynthia Arellano (Phoenix, Ariz.).
In the male light welterweight division, Mark Dawson (Philadelphia, Pa.) claimed a unanimous decision win over Junior World Team Open champion Brandon Trejo (Napa, Calif.). Dawson will now battle Mykquan Williams (Hartford, Conn.) for the light welterweight title in Saturday’s championship round action.
Hans Perez (Staten Island, N.Y.) and Charles Conwell (Cleveland Heights, Ohio) will compete for gold in the welterweight championship bout on Saturday. Perez, a teammate of 2012 Olympian Marcus Browne (Staten Island, N.Y.) claimed a unanimous decision win over Angel Rios (Sacramento, Calif.) in his semifinal contest while Conwell took a 2-1 victory in his bout with Christian Rivera (Orlando, Fla.).
In middleweight action, 2012 Veles Cup team member Manjaro Hills, Jr. (Baker, La.) faced off with Junior World Team Open champion Suray Mahmutovic (Daly City, Calif.). Hills was not bothered by Mahmutovic’s height advantage, giving the taller boxer a standing eight count in the first round. He went on to take a unanimous decision win over Mahmutovic to earn a berth in the finals with Vernon Lee (Rock Island, N.Y.).
2012 Junior Olympic National Championships silver medalist Edgar Berlanga (Brooklyn, N.Y.) will compete for gold for the second straight year. Berlanga earned his berth in the 2013 championship round with a unanimous decision win over Jose Pena (Houston, Texas) in semifinal action. He will face off with Ferdinand Kerobyan (N. Hollywood, Calif.) for the junior middleweight gold medal in Saturday’s action.
Mario Hernandez (Sparks, Nev.) and Sergio Flores (Overland Park, Kansas) will compete for the 2013 Junior Olympic National Championships title in the heavyweight division. The two boxers competed in the final bout of the evening session with Flores pulling out a tiebreaker victory over Wahzir Beyah (Hyannis, Mass.) and Hernandez taking a unanimous decision win over Daniel Jasso (Southgate, Mich.).
Super heavyweight Marcus Carter (Detroit, Mich.) enjoyed a short afternoon in his semifinal contest with Brandon Shannon (Alto Monte Springs, Fla.), winning a second round TKO. Carter will challenge Taifer Rigaud (Arlington, Mass.) for gold in the super heavyweight finale.
All of the final round bouts will take place in two rings on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Arthur R. Outlaw Convention Center, and the championship round bout sheets are attached. The bouts can be viewed via livestream on the USA Boxing website at www.usaboxing.org/watch-live.
Friday’s Semifinal Results
101 lbs/male: Dylan Price, Sicklerville, N.J., dec. Basil Nasser, Dearborn Heihts, Mich., 3-0
101 lbs/male: Kawelo Alcos, Wapahu, Hawaii, dec. Jeremiah Smotherman, St. Louis, Mo., 2-1
106 lbs/male: Derek Ochoa, Sanger, Calif., dec. Trey Aragon, Victoria, Texas, 2-1
106 lbs/male: Aaron Perez, Albuquerque, N.M., dec. Jody Gauthier, Opelouses, La., 3-0
106 lbs/female: Juliette Ladissa, Bronx, N.Y., dec. Danika Lara, El Centro, Calif., 3-0
110 lbs/male: Aaron Morales, Eufala, Okla., dec. Edward Rojas, Lakewood, Wash., 2-1
110 lbs/male: Vergil Ortiz, Grand Prairie, Texas dec. Keeshawn Williams, Washington DC, 3-0
114 lbs/male: Shakur Stevenson, Newark, N.J., dec. Victor Morales, Jr., Vancouver, Wash., 3-0
114 lbs/male: Darren Cunningha, St. Louis, Mo., dec. Caleb Chesternut, East Pointe, Mich., 2-1
114 lbs/female: Odalys Camacho, Bakersfield, Calif., Mikaila Gutierrez, Kemp, Texas, 2-1
114 lbs/female: Kristy Rodriguez, Naperville, Ill., dec. Angie Ornelas, Beaverton, Ore., 3-0
119 lbs/male: Devin Haney, Las Vegas, Nev., dec. Michael Dutchover, Midland, Texas, 2-1
119 lbs/male: Ruben Villa, Salinas, Calif., dec. Logan Yoon, Honolulu, Hawaii, 3-0
119 lbs/female: Jayda Thomas, Detroit, Mich., won on TKO over Katrina Nahe, Antioch, Calif., TKO-2
119 lbs/female: Melody Montes, Kissimmee, Fla., dec. Juanita Chavez, Racine, Wis., 3-0
125 lbs/male: Isidro Ochoa, Frenso, Calif., dec. Gage Campbell, Wauseon, Ohio, 3-0
125 lbs/male: Michael Nelson, Mansfield, Ohio dec. Gonzalo Rodriguez, Bakersfield, Calif., 2-1
125 lbs/female: Jermesha Poke, St. Louis, Mo., dec. Viviana Malgar, Glen Grove, N.Y., 3-0
125 lbs/female: Anna Crutchfield, Greenville, S.C., dec. Zoe Glass, Lansing, Mich., 3-0
132 lbs/male: Andres Cortes, Henderson, Nev., dec. Cole Dante, Honolulu, Hawaii, 3-0
132 lbs/male: Keoni Adric, Jr., Haleima, Hawaii, dec. Charlie Sheehy, Brisbane, Calif., 2-1
132 lbs/female: Iesha Kenney, Alexandria, Va., dec. Siane Moore, St. Louis, Mo., 2-1
132 lbs/female: Cynthia Arellano, Phoenix, Ariz., dec. Teresa Jones, Rowlet, Texas, 3-0
138 lbs/male: Mark Dawson, Philadelphia, Pa., dec. Brandon Trejo, Napa, Calif., 3-0
138 lbs/male: Mykquan Williams, Hartford, Conn., dec. Karrington White, Tulsa, Okla., 2-1
145 lbs/male: Charles Conwell, Cleveland Heights, Ohio, dec. Christian Rivera, Orlando, Fla., 2-1
145 lbs/male: Hans Perez, Staten Island, N.Y., dec. Angel Rios, Sacramento, Calif., 3-0
154 lbs/male: Ferdinand Kerobyan, N. Hollywood, Calif., dec. Amisael Jimenez, Sacramento, Calif., 3-0
154 lbs/male: Edgar Berlanga, Brooklyn, N.Y., dec. Jose Pena, Houston, Texas, 3-0
165 lbs/male: Manjaro Hills, Jr., dec. Suray Mahmutovic, Daly City, Calif., 3-0
165 lbs/male: Vernon Lee, Rock Island, N.Y., dec. Raul Muniz, Jupiter, Fla., 3-0
176 lbs/male: Mario Hernandez, Sparks, Nev., dec. Daniel Jasso, Southgate, Mich., 3-0
176 lbs/male: Sergio Flores, Overland Park, Kansas, won a tiebreaker over Wahzir Beyah, Hyannis, Mass., TB (CORRECTED)
176+ lbs: Taifer Rigaud, Arlington, Mass., dec. Malik Titus, Baltimore, Md., 2-1
176+ lbs/male: Marcus Carter, Detroit, Mich., won on TKO over Brandon Shannon, Alto Monte Springs, Fla., TKO-2 (1:26)
USA Boxing, as the national governing body for Olympic-style boxing, is the United States’ member organization of the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) and a member of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC