Independence Cup Squad Prepares to Head to the Dominican Republic(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – Team USA will complete training camp today for the 2013 Independence Cup in Santiago, Dominican Republic. The eight-athlete squad arrived in Colorado Springs on January 28 and spent the two and half week camp honing their skills with USA Boxing International Teaching Coach Pedro Roque and the Olympic Training center staff.
While 2012 U.S. Olympian Queen Underwood (Seattle, Wash.), Olympic training partner Shawn Simpson (Chicago, Ill.) and 2012 Women’s World Championships silver medalist Raquel Miller (San Francisco, Calif.) are all returned to familiar territory at the Olympic Training Center while their teammates embraced new surroundings. Light flyweight Leroy Davila (New Brunswick, N.J.), bantamweight Gary Salazar (Fresno, Calif.), lightweight Kenneth Sims, Jr. (Chicago, Ill.), light welterweight Erickson Lubin (Kissimmee, Fla.), and welterweight Rashidi Ellis (Lynn, Mass.) joined the three OTC veterans for the preparatory training camp.
The tight-knit squad took advantage of many Olympic Training Center perks, attending sports psychology, USADA, nutrition and media training classes as well as utilizing the sports medicine and recovery facilities on site. Coach Roque oversaw daily boxing training sessions as well as strength and conditioning work and the team enjoyed the opportunity to spar with several elite athletes in town for their own training camp with WBC Lightweight World Champion Adrien Broner. Three-time Olympian Rau’shee Warren (Cincinnati, Ohio), 2012 light welterweight Olympian Jamel Herring (Coram, N.Y.) and 2012 Olympic Training partner Robert Easter (Toledo, Ohio) all sparred with members of the Independence Cup squad and provided them with some insight on what to expect at the high level international competition.
In addition to their competition preparation, USA Boxing hosted a super bowl party at the Olympic Training Center for the team and Lubin, a junior in high school, kept up with his school work through daily study hall in the Athlete Services area.
Head Coach Eddie Rivas (San Antonio, Texas) and coach Jason Galarza (Orlando, Fla.) will lead the team into action in the Dominican Republic with Dr. Robin Goodfellow (Albion, Mich.) serving as the Physician and Team Manager. The squad will depart from Colorado Springs on Saturday and travel to Santiago, Dominican Republic on the first day of official team arrivals. The general weigh-in, tournament draw, and the first day of preliminary round competition will take place on Monday, February 18. Preliminary action will continue through Tuesday, February 19 with quarterfinal round bouts taking place on Wednesday, February 20 and semifinal contests on Thursday, February 21. The event will conclude with championship bouts on Friday, February 22.
Teams from Cuba, Brazil, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Guatemala, Canada and additional nations are expected to compete in the annual event, which featured squads from 16 countries at the 2012 event. As the first multi-nation event of 2013 for USA Boxing, the tournament will provide valuable international experience for all of the competitors.
Bios for all the eight athletes representing the United States at the Independence Cup are attached and results will be disseminated daily. For the latest information on the event and all of the latest with USA Boxing, go to www.usaboxing.org and follow us on twitter @usaboxing.
Independence Cup Team Roster
108 lbs/male: Leroy Davila, Brunswick, N.J.
114 lbs/male: Shawn Simpson, Chicago, Ill.
123 lbs/male: Gary Salazar, Fresno, Calif.
132 lbs/male: Kenneth Sims, Jr., Chicago, Ill.
132 lbs/female: Queen Underwood, Seattle, Wash.
141 lbs/male: Erickson Lubin, Kissimmee, Fla.
152 lbs/male: Rashidi Ellis, Lynn, Mass.
165 lbs/female: Raquel Miller, San Francisco, Calif.
International Teaching Coach: Pedro Roque Otano, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Coach: Edward Rivas, San Antonio, Texas
Coach: Jason Galarza, Orlando, Fla.
Team Manager/Team Physician: Dr. Robin Goodfellow, Albion, Mich.