(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – Two American boxers earned gold medals in their international debuts this past weekend at the Klitchko Brothers Tournament in Berdichev, Ukraine. Flyweight Antonio Vargas (Kissimmee, Fla.) and welterweight Kareem Martin (Clinton, Md.) each won their championship bouts on Saturday to take win their gold medals. Middleweight Alex Rincon (Carrollton, Texas) fell short in his final round contest, but he will take home a silver medal for his efforts in Ukraine.
The United States placed second in the tournament team standings, winning a total of five medals in the event with light flyweight Gilbert Renteria (Houston, Texas) and lightweight Lamont Roach (Upper Marlboro, Md.) claiming bronze. Only Ukraine’s number one squad won more medals in the event and four international teams with a larger number of tournament participants earned fewer medals than the nine-man U.S. squad. Team USA’s five medals in Ukraine brings the international total to 60 on the year, including 31 gold.
The state of the Maryland and the Washington DC area enjoyed great success in Ukraine with two gold medal victories and a bronze medalist. Vargas took the first win of the night for the U.S. team in a flyweight final round showdown with Armenia’s Erik Petrosyan. The American flyweight claimed gold with a 3-0 unanimous decision win over Petrosyan.
Martin battled a boxer from host nation Ukraine in his welterweight championship contest. Yet he wasn’t deterred by his hometown foe, taking a 2-1 victory over Ukraine’s Aleksyei Tokarchuk to win welterweight gold.
Rincon competed in the last U.S. bout of the event as he faced off with Ukraine’s Aleksandr Hijnyak in middleweight action. He dropped a 3-0 decision to Hijnyak in their championship round bout to take the middleweight silver medal.
All of the U.S. competitors in the 2013 Klitchko Cup won gold medals in the youth division at the 2013 USA Boxing National Championships to earn their berths on the United States squad. The youth division made its debut in the national tournament in 2013 following age division changes by AIBA and USA Boxing.
2000 Olympic coach Israel Acosta (Milwaukee, Wis.), Bernard Roach (Temple Hills, Md.), and Jose Renteria, Jr. (Houston, Texas) served as the team coaches for the Klitchko Brothers Tournament. Dr. Timothy Beste (Flower Mound, Texas) joined the squad the team doctor and Don Rivera (Fairoaks, Calif.) worked as the AIBA official.
U.S. Championship Round Results
114 lbs: Antonio Vargas, Kissimmee, Fla./USA dec. Erik Petrosyan, ARM, 3-0
152 lbs: Kareem Martin, Clinton, Md./USA dec. Aleksyei Tokarchuk, UKR, 2-1
165 lbs: Aleksandr Hijnyak, UKR, dec. Alex Rincon, Carrollton, Texas/USA, 3-0