USA Boxing’s Elite Teams to Hit the Road for International Competitive Opportunities

(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – Over the next two weeks, USA Boxing’s elite male and female national teams will take to the skies for international competitions in Poland and Mexico. The men’s squad will be the first group to step in to the ring, boxing in the Leszek Drogosz Memorial Tournament, September 15-20 in Kielce, Poland. USA Boxing’s top women will challenge opponents from north, central and south America at the 2014 Women’s Continental Championships September 23-28 in Guadalajara, Mexico.

The women’s team is convening at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., today for a training camp prior to traveling south to Guadalajara on September 21. Team USA’s roster features several decorated athletes led by 2012 Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields (Flint, Mich.), 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Marlen Esparza (Houston, Texas), 2012 Olympian Queen Underwood (Seattle, Wash.), and reigning World Champion Tiara Brown (Fort Myers, Fla.). 2012 World Championships bronze medalist Christina Cruz (New York, N.Y.) has been living and training at the Olympic Training Center for the last five months and hopes to showcase the results in Guadalajara. Light flyweight Alex Love (Colorado Springs, Colo.), light welterweight Destiny Chearino (Warwick, R.I.), welterweight Danyelle Wolf (San Diego, Calif.), light heavyweight Heidi Henriksen (St. Louis Park, Minn.), and heavyweight Krystal Dixon (New Rochelle, N.Y.) will complete the squad of athletes boxing in the 2014 continental event. Coaches Israel Acosta (Milwaukee, Wis.), Benny Roman (New York, N.Y.), and Juan Estrada (San Diego, Calif.) will lead the U.S. team with Dr. Larry Lovelace (Oklahoma City, Okla.) and AIBA official Kevina Franklin (Atlanta, Ga.) rounding out the staff traveling to Mexico.

All of the participants will take part in the general weigh-in on September 23 prior to the first day of competition on September 24. The United States squad was dominant in the 2013 event, winning eight gold medals and one silver in last year’s tournament.

The elite men’s team is returning to international competition for the first time since May in the Leszek Drogosz Memorial Tournament. Reigning national champions Malik Jackson (Washington DC), Ja’Rico O’Quinn (Detroit, Mich.), Genaro Gamez (San Diego, Calif.), Abraham Nova (Albany, N.Y.), Jose Alday, Jr. (Odessa, Texas), Le’Shawn Rodriquez (Shirley, N.Y.), Joshua Temple (St. Louis, Mo.) and Cam F. Awesome (Lenexa, Kansas) will join USA Boxing National Championships silver medalists Joshua Franco (San Antonio, Texas) and Jasper McCargo (Oakland, Calif.) in Poland. Edward Murphy (Shirley, N.Y.), Luis Gamez (San Diego, Calif.) and Jose Alday, Sr. (Odessa, Texas) will serve as the team coaches with Don Rivera (Fair Oaks, Calif.) working as the AIBA official. Thirty teams from Europe, Asia, and North America are slated to compete in the event in Poland. The United States team will depart for Poland on Friday before opening competition on Monday, September 15.

Women’s Continental Championships Team
106 lbs: Alex Love, Colorado Springs, Colo.
112 lbs: Marlen Esparza, Houston, Texas (Olympic Training Center resident athlete)
119 lbs: Christina Cruz, New York, N.Y. (Olympic Training Center resident athlete)
125 lbs: Tiara Brown, Fort Myers, Fla.
132 lbs: Queen Underwood, Seattle, Wash. (Olympic Training Center resident athlete)
141 lbs: Destiny Chearino, Warwick, R.I.
152 lbs: Danyelle Wolf, San Diego, Calif.
165 lbs: Claressa Shields, Flint, Mich.
178 lbs: Heidi Henriksen, St. Louis Park, Minn.
178+ lbs: Krystal Dixon, New Rochelle, N.Y.
Coach: Israel Acosta, Milwaukee, Wis.
Coach: Benny Roman, New York, N.Y.
Coach: Juan Estrada, San Diego, Calif.
AIBA Official: Kevina Franklin, Atlanta, Ga.
Physician: Dr. Larry Lovelace, Oklahoma City, Okla.

Leszek Drogosz Memorial Tournament
108 lbs: Joshua Franco, San Antonio, Texas
114 lbs: Malik Jackson, Washington DC
123 lbs: Ja’Rico O’Quinn, Detroit, Mich.
132 lbs: Genaro Gamez, San Diego, Calif.
141 lbs: Abraham Nova, Albany, N.Y.
152 lbs: Jose Alday, Jr., Odessa, Texas
165 lbs: LeShawn Rodriquez, Shirley, N.Y.
178 lbs: Jasper McCargo, Oakland, Calif.
201 lbs: Joshua Temple, St. Louis, Mo.
201+ lbs: Cam F. Awesome, Lenexa, Kansas
Coach: Edward Murphy, Shirley, N.Y.
Coach: Luis Gamez, San Diego, Calif.
Coach: Jose Alday, Sr., Odessa, Texas
AIBA official: Don Rivera, Fair Oaks, Calif.

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).