USA Boxing

Feb 26 USA Prepared to Battle Ireland

Feb. 26, 2009, 11:34 a.m. (ET)

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(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) - The United States' top boxers arrived in Ireland on Wednesday, following a week-long training camp at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The 12-person squad will face off in the first of two duals with the host country on Friday, February 27 at the National Stadium in Dublin. The second dual will be contested on Sunday, March 1 at the Arch Centre Athy.

Ireland recently selected its roster for the first dual event following their national championships, which concluded on February 20. Led by team captain and 2008 light heavyweight Olympic silver medalist Ken Egan (Ireland), the team boasts three 2008 Olympians, including two medalists. In addition to Egan, light flyweight Paddy Barnes (Ireland) took home a bronze medal from China. Egan will battle the United States' Siju Shabazz (Las Cruces, N.M.) while Barnes faces Louie Byrd (Denver, Colo.). Bantamweight representative John Joe Nevin (Ireland) joined Egan and Barnes in Beijing, and will challenge Team USA's Ernesto Garza. On the women's side, two-time world champion Katie Taylor (Ireland) will represent the host team in her bout with Queen Underwood (Seattle, Wash.).

Newly crowned Irish flyweight national champion Declan Geraghty will face two-time Olympian and reigning World Champion Rau'shee Warren (Cincinnati, Ohio) while fellow Olympian Raynell Williams (Cleveland, Ohio) will battle Ireland's Carl Frampton. U.S. Olympic Team Trials super heavyweight champion Michael Hunter (Las Vegas, Nev.) will take on Anthony Crampton of Ireland.

Lightweight Carl Frampton, lightweight Ross Hickey, light welterweight Phillip Sutcliffe, welterweight Willie McLoughlin, middleweight Darren O'Neill and heavyweight Con Sheehan will complete the Irish roster.

On the United States side, lightweight Eric Fowler (Montgomery, Texas); light welterweight Charles Watson (Johnson City, Tenn.); welterweight Javontae Starks (Minneapolis, Minn.) and heavyweight Paul Koon (Philadelphia, Pa.) will round out the team competing in dual action.

The team will be led by coaches Hal Chernoff (Fruitland, Md.); Ray Velez (Ridgewood, N.Y.) and Ken Buffington (Marshalltown, Iowa). Richard Trindle (Mercer, Pa.) will serve as Team Manager for the event with Larry Ferebee (Lynchburg, Va.) and Tom Cleary (Cincinnati, Ohio) working as AIBA officials and Dr. John Denker (Portland, Ore.) joining the squad as the Team Physician. Mike Stafford (Cincinnati, Ohio) and Sankara Frazier (Minneapolis, Minn.) assisted the three coaches during the team's training camp in Colorado Springs.  

The 2009 USA vs. Ireland Dual is the first competition between the two countries since November of 2005 when the two nations faced off in a three-nation event in Cleveland, Ohio.  The international competition is the first trip to Ireland for a U.S. team since the multi-nations tournament in 2003. The 2009 USA vs. Ireland Dual is the first senior level competition to which the United States has sent a full team to since the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.

 

Team USA

106 lbs: Louie Byrd, Denver, Colo.
112 lbs: Rau'shee Warren, Cincinnati, Ohio (Two-time Olympian)
119 lbs: Ernie Garza, Saginaw, Mich.
125 lbs: Raynell Williams, Cleveland, Ohio (2008 Olympian)
132 lbs: Eric Fowler, Montgomery, Texas
141 lbs: Charles Watson, Johnson City, Tenn.
152 lbs: Javontae Starks, Minneapolis, Minn.
165 lbs: Aleem Whitfield, Geneva, N.Y.
178 lbs: Siju Shabazz, Las Cruces, N.M.
201 lbs: Paul Koon, Philadelphia, Pa.
201+ lbs: Michael Hunter, Las Vegas, Nev.

Coach: Hal Chernoff, Fruitland, Md.
Coach: Ray Velez, Ridgewood, N.Y.
Coach: Ken Buffington, Marshalltown, Iowa
Team Manager: Richard Trindle, Mercer, Pa.
AIBA Official: Larry Ferebee, Lynchburg, Va.
AIBA Official: Tom Cleary, Cincinnati, Ohio
Team Physician: Dr. John Denker, Portland, Ore.
Training Camp Coach: Mike Stafford, Cincinnati, Ohio
Training Camp Coach: Sankara Frazier, Minneapolis, Minn.

 

Team Ireland

106 lbs: Paddy Barnes (2008 Olympic bronze medalist)
112 lbs: Declan Geraghty
119 lbs: John Joe Nevin (2008 Olympian)
125 lbs: Carl Frampton
132 lbs: Ross Hickey
141 lbs: Philip Sutcliffe
152 lbs: Willie McLoughlin
165 lbs: Darren O'Neill
178 lbs: Ken Egan (2008 Olympic silver medalist)
201 lbs: Con Sheehan
201+ lbs: Anthony Crampton

Team USA Bios
Light flyweight/106 lbs - Louie Byrd, Denver, Colorado
5-2 ~ September 19, 1990
2008 FUTURE STARS NATIONAL CHAMPION

Flyweight/112 lbs - Rau'shee Warren, Cincinnati, Ohio
5-5 ~ February 13, 1987
TWO-TIME OLYMPIAN
2007 WORLD CHAMPION

Bantamweight/119 lbs - Ernesto Garza, Saginaw, Michigan
5-4 ~ 1 October 25, 1988
2008 NATIONAL GOLDEN GLOVES CHAMPION

Featherweight/125 lbs - Raynell Williams, Cleveland, Ohio5-6 ~ February 4, 1989

Lightweight/132 lbs - Eric Fowler, Montgomery, Texas
5-7 ~ June 8, 1988
2008 NATIONAL PAL CHAMPION


Light welterweight/141 lbs - Charles Watson, Johnson City, Tenn.
5-8 ~ October 27, 1990
2008 U.S. FUTURE STARS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS BRONZE MEDALIST                                       

Welterweight/152 lbs - Javontae Starks, Minneapolis, Minn.
6-0 ~ March 18, 1989
2008 U.S. FUTURE STARS NATIONAL CHAMPION

Middleweight/165 lbs - Aleem Whitfield, Geneva, New York
6-0 ~ December 24, 1989
2008 U.S. FUTURE STARS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS BRONZE MEDALIST                                                                           

Light heavyweight/178 lbs - Siju Shabazz, Las Cruces, N.M.
6-2 ~ July 15, 1985
2007 NATIONAL GOLDEN GLOVES CHAMPION

Heavyweight/201 lbs - Paul Koon, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
6-3 ~ April 14, 1986
2008 U.S. FUTURE STARS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS BRONZE MEDALIST

Super heavyweight/201+ lbs Michael Hunter- Las Vegas, Nevada
6-2 ~ July 10, 1988
U.S. OLYMPIC TEAM TRIALS CHAMPION

Female/lightweight/132 lbs - Queen Underwood, Seattle, Wash.
5-6 ~ May 8, 1984
TWO-TIME LIGHT WELTERWEIGHT NATIONAL CHAMPION

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