Team USA Clinches Four Berths in the Medal Round at the 2014 Youth World Championships
(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO.) – Four representatives for the United States boxing team secured spots in the semifinal round with quarterfinal wins on Monday at the 2014 Youth World Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria. Male flyweight Shakur Stevenson (Newark, N.J.), female lightweight Jajaira Gonzalez (Glendora, Calif.), female middleweight Martha Fabela (Oakland, Calif.) and male super heavyweight Darmani Rock (Philadelphia, Pa.) each claimed victories in today’s action at the Armeec Arena to move on to the semifinal round. Male light flyweight Nico Hernandez (Wichita, Kansas) and male welterweight Javier Estrada (Palmdale, Calif.) lost their quarterfinal bouts, eliminating them from the tournament.
2013 Junior World Champion Jajaira Gonzalez (Glendora, Calif.) returned to the ring after two rest days for her quarterfinal match-up this morning. She faced off with fellow reigning world titlist Agnes Alexiusson of Sweden in the opening United States bout of the day. Gonzalez defeated her second straight world champion in the lightweight bout, taking a 2-0 decision over Alexiusson. She will take on Ukraine’s Anhelina Bondarenko in semifinal action on Wednesday.
Fabela is a relative newcomer to the major international scene, having only the Youth Continental Championships to prepare her for the 2014 Youth World Championships. Yet her inexperience did not deter Fabela from advancing to the semifinals with her third straight victory in Bulgaria. She won a 2-0 decision over Turkey’s Sema Caliksan in their middleweight showdown to punch her ticket for the medal round. Fabela will battle Australia’s Cailtin Parker in a semifinal match-up on Wednesday.
Stevenson showcased the skills that earned him his first world championship in his quarterfinal match-up with Brazil’s Carlos Silva. The 2013 Junior Male Boxer of the Year won a unanimous decision over Silva in the flyweight contest to move on to his second straight World Championships semifinal bout. He will challenge China’s L V Ping in flyweight action on Wednesday evening in Bulgaria.
Rock’s British opponent Nathan Gorman withdrew from their quarterfinal bout, giving the American a spot in the super heavyweight semifinals. He will return to the ring on Wednesday in a match-up with Hungary’s Lazlo Komor.
Hernandez lost a highly-competitive bout to Azerbaijan’s Rufat Huseynov in their light flyweight contest, falling by a 2-1 split decision. In men’s welterweight action, the Dominican Republic’s Juan Solano won a 3-0 decision over Estrada in quarterfinal competition.
All of the remaining tournament competitors will enjoy an off day on Tuesday before returning to the ring on Wednesday for semifinal round action.
Coaches Pedro Roque (Colorado Springs, Colo.), David Balderas (Santa Maria, Calif.), and Willie Moses (Newark, N.J.) are leading the United States team at the international event in Bulgaria with Dr. Ralph Bohm (Dix Hills, N.Y.) serving as the team physician.
For additional information on the 2014 Youth World Championships and links to the online stream of the action, go to http://boxingsofia2014.org.
108 lbs/male: Rufat Huseynov, AZE Nico Hernandez, Wichita, Kansas/USA , 2-1
114 lbs/male: Shakur Stevenson, Newark, N.J./USA dec. Carlos Silva, BRA, 3-0
132 lbs/female: Jajaira Gonzalez, Glendora, Calif./USA dec. Agnes Alexiusson, SWE, 2-0
152 lbs/male: Juan Solano, DOM, dec. Javier Estrada, Palmdale, Calif./USA , 3-0
165 lbs/female: Martha Fabela, Oakland, Calif./USA dec. Sema Caliksan, TUR, 2-0
201+ lbs/male: Darmani Rock, Philadelphia, Pa./USA won on walkover over Nathan Gorman, GBR, W/O