Boxing weekend a big hit

Usman Rasa of CounterPunch in Vernon (left) delivers a hook to Rome Tan of Queensborough (New Westminster) in amateur boxing Saturday afternoon at the Vernon Recreation Centre. - Lisa Vandervelde/Morning Star
Usman Rasa of CounterPunch in Vernon (left) delivers a hook to Rome Tan of Queensborough (New Westminster) in amateur boxing Saturday afternoon at the Vernon Recreation Centre.
— image credit: Lisa Vandervelde/Morning Star

Tyler Lowey

Morning Star Staff

Fighters from B.C. and Alberta exchanged blows in an entertaining amateur boxing tri-card weekend at the Vernon Rec Centre.

There were 30 bouts that featured plenty of local talent from the Vernon Boxing Club and CounterPunch boxing, also of Vernon.

Usman Raza of CounterPunch fought both days in the senior welterweight class, winning his second bout unanimously.

Nineteen-year-old Adam Woods of CounterPunch won a very tough contest at middleweight. Along with picking up the decision, Woods was named Best Novice boxer in the tourney.

The Vernon Boxing Club was represented well by Jake Stuchberry and Joe Sigalet.

Siagalet fought Soheil Binnez of Richmond out of the light heavyweight division.

“It was a very close fight. Joe won the fight but lost the decision,” said Brian Jones, head coach at Vernon Boxing Club.

Stuchberry took on Daneil Mott from Quesnel. Mott, the more experienced fighter, edged Stuchberry in a very tough bout.

The tournament also displayed Kenny Lally from Prince George, five-time Canadian champion and his clubmate and Canadian silver medallist Jag Seeghra.

“While the competition was in full swing, we were also privileged to welcome Sylvio Fex from Alberta, appointed by Boxing Canada, who ran a 12-hour learning facilitator program, and Roland Labbe, fresh from the London Olympics and Ian Gibson were busy upgrading and qualifying referees and coaches, “ said Tony Stamboulieh, president of Boxing B.C. and head coach of Counterpunch.

The tournament sailed smoothly thanks to: Olympic referee and Alberta’s chief official Labbe, Gibson, B.C.’s chief official, assisted by Peggy Maerz of Salmon Arm’s Bulldogs and Kay Stamboulieh of CounterPunch, B.C. coach Bob Pegues and matchmaker Colleen Bourassa.

National silver medalist Sarah Haghighat-Joo presented the other special trophies.

The trophy winners were: Best Female Boxer, Cynthia Hughes of Bronx Boxing Club in Edmonton; Best Male Boxer, Kenny Lally of Inner City Boxing Club in Prince George; Best Bout, Jake Varga of Olson’s Boxing Club in Victoria versus Sasan Haghighat-Joo of Peps Boxing in Vancouver, Best Prospect, Brandon Juba of Thistletown Boxing Club in Kelowna; and the Bronx Boxing Club of Edmonton won Best Club Participation.

The event was sanctioned by Boxing B.C. and was conducted according to Canadian Amateur Boxing Association and International Amateur Boxing Association rules.

Major sponsors were: CounterPunch Boxing Club, SunFM, Vernon Morning Star, Vernon Boxing Club,  Baron Insurance, Robert Dunkley (East Van Bob), City of Vernon and Breakaway Fitness.


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