(LAS VEGAS, NEV.) – Twenty bouts of semifinal competition filled two rings at the National Golden Gloves in Las Vegas on Friday evening. The action was intense throughout the three hours of boxing with all of the boxers chasing a spot in the tournament finals. Friday’s victors included a two pairs of brothers, three reigning USA Boxing National Champions and three returning Golden Gloves titlists.
The first USA Boxing National Champion to earn a spot in the 2014 National Golden Gloves finals was light flyweight Leroy Davila (New Brunswick, N.J.). The two-time national champion moved on to the championship bout with a 4-1 decision over Basil Nasser (Detroit, Mich.) in their light flyweight showdown. Davila will compete for his second national championship of the year in a final round bout with Christian Carto (Deptford, N.J.) on Saturday. Carto claimed a 5-0 decision over Adrian Servin (Phoenix, Ariz.) to earn his spot on championship night.
2013 Youth National Champion Antonio Vargas (Kissimmee, Fla.) moved on to his first Golden Gloves championship bout with a 5-0 decision over Darren Cunningham (St. Louis, Mo.). Vargas will face off with one of two Montgomery brothers competing in 2014 Golden Gloves final round action. Mikhail Montgomery (Macon, Ga.) pulled out a 4-1 decision over Christopher Colbert (Brooklyn, N.Y.) in the second flyweight semifinal. Montgomery overcame a second round, standing eight count to take the victory over Colbert and join Vargas in the finals.
The first Russell brother won his finals berth in the bantamweight division. Defending champion Gary Antonio Russell (Capitol Heights, Md.) pulled out a close 3-2 decision over Hector Tanajara (San Antonio, Texas) in the first bantamweight semifinal bout. Russell will challenge Ruben Villa (Salinas, Calif.) for his second straight National Golden Gloves title on Saturday. Villa upset defending flyweight titlist Stephen Fulton, Jr. (Philadelphia, Pa.) in their bantamweight semifinal bout to move on to Saturday’s competition.
The older Montgomery brother earned a spot in his second straight Golden Gloves championship bout in the lightweight division. 2013 Golden Gloves silver medalist Maliek Montgomery (Macon, Ga.) took a 5-0 decision over Steven Ortiz (Newark, N.J.) to claim the first berth in the lightweight finale. The second spot was filled by William Foster (New Haven, Conn.) following his split decision win over Eder Carrillo (Woodland, Calif.) in lightweight semifinal action.
The lone TKO of the night came in the light welterweight division as Jaron Ennis (Philadelphia, Pa.) stopped 2013 Junior Olympic national champion Keoni Adric, Jr. (Haleiwa, Hawaii) in their light welterweight semifinal match-up. Ennis will face the second Russell brother in his championship bout on Saturday. Gary Antuanne Russell (Capitol Heights, Md.) sent Arthur Porter (Monroe, Mich.) to the canvas in the second round of their semifinal bout, but Porter remained competitive in the bout. Russell went on to win a 4-1 decision and a spot in the finals with his older brother.
Hometown favorite Quontez McGrath (Las Vegas, Nev.) thrilled his supporters in attendance with a semifinal victory over Marquez Reyes (Colorado Springs, Colo.) in welterweight action. McGrath’s 4-1 decision advanced him on to a final round contest with Samuel Valentin (Land O’ Lakes, Fla.). Valentin took a unanimous decision victory over Tipton Walker (Benton Harbour, Mich.) in their welterweight contest to earn the date with McGrath.
The middleweight semifinalists all boasted impressive resumes, but only two could move on to the championship bout. Defending champion Marquis Moore (Colorado Springs, Colo.) took a 3-2 victory over 2013 youth national champion Alex Rincon (Carrollton, Texas) to claim the first championship berth. On the other side of the bracket, two-time USA Boxing National Champion LeShawn Rodriques (Shirley, N.Y.) moved on to the finals with a 5-0 decision over Anthony Campbell (Covington, Tenn.).
In the light heavyweight division, Malcolm McAllister (Long Beach, Calif.) won a split decision over Niko Valdes (Miami, Fla.) to punch his ticket for Saturday’s action. His final bout of the tournament will be a match-up with Tory Williams (Hammond, La.) in light heavyweight championship action. Williams took a split decision of his own in the semifinals, claiming a 3-2 win over Sergio Flores (Kansas City, Kansas).
The heavyweight division showed how quickly the tide turns in major national tournament competition. Joshua Temple (St. Louis, Mo.) won a first round TKO in his quarterfinal bout on Thursday, but he was eliminated from the tournament with a split decision loss to Shawndell Winter (Riverdale, Ill.) in Friday’s competition. Winter will battle former National Golden Gloves titlist DeRae Crane (Colorado Springs, Colo.) in Saturday’s action. Crane won a 4-1 victory over Bryan Daniels (Worcester, Mass.) in their heavyweight bout.
Defending champion Cam F. Awesome (Lenexa, Kansas) won another unanimous decision victory in his semifinal bout on Friday night. Awesome defeated Nick Mazurek (Palatine, Ill.) in their super heavyweight bout to earn his finals appearance. He will close tournament action in a match-up with Jermaine Franklin, Jr. (Saginaw, Mich.) on Saturday. Franklin took a unanimous decision of his own in his semifinal showdown with Craig Lewis (Detroit, Mich.).
Saturday’s final round action will begin at 7 p.m. at the Paradise Events Center in the Las Vegas Hotel.
Friday’s Semifinal Results
* The city or region following the hometown indicates the athlete’s Golden Gloves franchise
108 lbs: Leroy Davila, New Brunswick, N.J./New Jersey dec. Basil Nasser, Detroit, Mich./Detroit, 4-1
108 lbs: Christian Carto, Deptford, N.J./Pennsylvania, dec. Adrian Servin, Phoenix, Ariz.Nevada, 5-0
114 lbs: Mikhail Montgomery, Macon, Ga./Knoxville, dec. Christopher Colbert, Brooklyn, N.Y./New York Metro, 4-1
114 lbs: Antonio Vargas, Kissimmee, Fla./Florida dec. Darren Cunningham, St. Louis, Mo./St. Louis, 5-0
123 lbs: Ruben Villa, Salinas, Calif./California dec. Stephen Fulton, Jr., Philadelphia, Pa./Pennsylvania, 5-0
123 lbs: Gary Antonio Russell, Capitol Heights, Md./Washington DC dec. Hector Tanajara, San Antonio, Texas/Texas, 3-2
132 lbs: Maliek Montgomery, Macon, Ga./Knoxville, dec. Steven Ortiz, Newark, N.J./New Jersey, 5-0
132 lbs: William Foster, West Haven, Conn./New England dec. Eder Carrillo, Woodland, Calif./California, 3-2
141 lbs: Gary Antuanne Russell, Capitol Heights, Md./Washington DC dec. Arthur Porter, Monroe, Mich./Toledo, 4-1
141 lbs: Jaron Ennis, Philadelphia, Pa./Pennsylvania won on TKO over Keoni Adric, Jr., Haleiwa, Hawaii/Hawaii, TKO
152 lbs: Quontez McGrath, Las Vegas, Nev./Nevada dec. Reyes Marquez, Colorado Springs, Colo./Colorado-New Mexico, 4-1
152 lbs: Samuel Valentin, Land O’ Lakes, Fla./Florida dec. Tipton Walker, Benton Harbour, Mich./Michigan, 5-0
165 lbs: Marquis Moore, Colorado Springs, Colo./Colorado-New Mexico dec. Alex Rincon, Carrollton, Texas/Texas, 3-2
165 lbs: LeShawn Rodriquez, Shirley, N.Y./New York Metro, dec. Anthony Campbell, Covington, Tenn./Mid-South, 5-0
178 lbs: Malcolm McAllister, Long Beach, Calif./California dec. Niko Valdes, Miami, Fla./Florida, 3-2
178 lbs: Tory Williams, Hammond, La./Mid-South dec. Sergio Flores, Kansas City, Kansas/Kansas City, 3-2
201 lbs: DeRae Crane, Colorado Springs, Colo./Colorado-New Mexico dec. Bryan Daniels, Worcester, Mass./New England, 4-1
201 lbs: Shawndell Winter, Riverdale, Ill./Chicago, dec. Joshua Temple, St. Louis, Mo./St. Louis, 3-2
201+ lbs: Jermaine Franklin, Jr., Saginaw, Mich./Michigan, dec. Craig Lewis, Detroit, Mich./Detroit, 5-0
201+ lbs: Cam F. Awesome, Lenexa, Kansas/Kansas City dec. Nick Mazurek, Palatine, Ill./Chicago, 5-0
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).