COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Danny Garcia took on his friend
and boxing mentor Ray Robinson in their 132-pound opening match
Tuesday at the U.S. National Championships.
"I never thought I'd be fighting him," Garcia said of Robinson
after their match at the Olympic Training Center.
"I always looked up to him."
Garcia and Robinson both are from Philadelphia, though Robinson
has been living in Marquette, Mich., through the United States
Olympic Education Center at the University of Northern Michigan.
Robinson returns to Philadelphia during the summer, they remain
friends, and over the years they have been sparring partners. "I
was about 13 and he was about 16," Garcia, now 17, said.
"He was always bigger than me and he helped me get better."
Garcia learned his lessons well. He scored a 17-14 decision over
his erstwhile mentor and move into the next round of competition.
"I went to the body a couple of times and that kind of slowed
him down," Garcia said. "Then I started some lefts and right
hooks because he was a southpaw. I felt good, but I can do way
better. I was kind of feeling the altitude today."
Garcia won the Under-19 Championships last fall, but is in his
first U.S Championships. Robinson won a bronze medal in last year's
Though Garcia's win might be considered an upset, pre-tournament
favorites generally ruled the day. Two-time super heavyweight
champion Mike Wilson from Medford, Ore., used a vicious body attack
to defeat Army soldier Andrew Shepherd of Newport News, Va., 23-12.
"These Army guys are always in shape," Wilson said. "I tried
to slow him down early, then take it to him and pick up my points
Other returning champions posting wins were Mark Davis of
Cleveland, Ohio, two-time winner Michael Evans of Dayton, Ohio, at
132 pounds; Karl Dargan, Philadelphia, 141; Demetrius Andrade of
Providence, R.I. at 152; Edwin Rodriguez of Worchester, Mass., 165;
and William Rosinsky, Richmond Hills, N.Y., 178.
Davis won a 19-11 decision over Enrique Nieves of Phoenix. Evans
defeated Chris Howard of Crossville, Tenn., on a fourth-round
stoppage. Dargan defeated Edward Brooks of Phoenix, 24-13. Andrade
earned a 20-4 decision over Lucas Galle of Rio Rancho, N.M.,
Rodriguez defeated Abraham Han of El Paso, Texas, 17-11 and
Rosinski took a 24-10 decision over Donta Woods of Atlanta, Ga.
Former Olympian and defending 112-pound champ Rau'Shee Warren of
Cincinnati had a bye.
In women's action, Ronica Jefferey of Brooklyn, N.Y., defeated
Cynthia Talmadge of San Francisco, Calif., 15-11 at 125 pounds.
Maimunah Holland of South Nyack, N.Y., defeated Yelena Binder of
Brooklyn, N.Y., 16-10, at 132 pounds. Ana Julaton of Alameda,
Calif., defeated Ashlei Jaquay of Imperial, Pa., 23-6, at 125
pounds. Triva Pino of Wahiawa, Hawaii stopped Autumn Anderson of
Omaha at 138 pounds.
Danny Garcia took on his friend and boxing mentor Ray Robinson in their 132-pound opening match Tuesday at the U.S. National Championships.