Boxing News2024 Olympic Trials

Two knockouts highlight day one of 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Boxing

by Luke Santangelo

Monday evening saw thirty-six resillient and power boxers keep their Paris 2024 Olympic Games dreams alive, as they advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Boxing at the CAJUNDOME in Lafayette, La.

Let's take a quick look back at some of the nights top highlights.

Bout of the Day

The bout of the day came early in the evening between Jordan Fuentes (Fresno, Calif.) and William Luther (Washington, D.C.). 

The bout drew crowd attention noises from the crowd immediately when Luther gave Fuentes an 8-count in the first round. All eyes were locked on the bout as Fuentes landed multiple blows to Luther's head to close the round. 

Fuentes came out aggressive in the final two rounds to take control of the fight and take the unanimous decision to advance to the next round.

"I feel good. I just turned 18 and got my first win, and I am happy right now," Fuentes said after his performance today. "I will go against the two-seed (Raimier Walker), and I am confident I can come out with the victory again." 

Fuentes, hoping his youth and resilient energy can carry on to the next round as he previewed, will face the two-seed from Liverpool, N.Y., Walker, on Thursday.

Eli Lankford and Marcellus Smith dominate in the first round of the 51 kg weight class

Marcellus Smith (Garfield Heights, Ohio) went head-to-head against Peter Frakes (Cincinnati, Ohio) and dominated all three rounds. Smith started at the sound of the bell and landed multiple blows to Frakes' head. Smith's speed and control were far too much for Frakes, as he won unanimously. Eli Lankford (Colorado Springs, Colo.) began his tournament run boxing against Amos Thang (Indianapolis, Ind.). Lankford capitalized on missed punches and counterpunching to land clean shots to give Thang an 8-count in the third round. The other 112 lbs. bout to take place in the ring was Kenario Davidson (Colorado Springs, Colo.) versus David Delgado (Woodland, Calif.). Delgado defeated Davidson via a unanimous decision.

Aaron Maximus Garcia (Payson, Utah) will have to wait until Wednesday to begin his tournament, as he won his opening bout by walkover over Maximiliano Baez (Reading, Pa.). 


All four winners advance to the quarterfinals. Smith will go up against the top-ranked boxer in this weight class, Jordan Roach (Upper Marlboro, Md.). Lankford will face off against two-seed Ryan Williams (Toledo, Ohio); Delgado against third seed Terry Washington (San Bernardino, Calif.); and Garcia goes head-to-head with Alex Espinoza (Garland, Texas), the four-seed. All four will try to pull off the upset on Wednesday to advance to the semifinals.


 Moreu, Stewart, Garcia, and Germany shine in 57 kg 


Francis Stewart (Cleveland) and Abraham Lozano Garcia (Concord, Calif.) led the pack in the 125 lbs. division on Monday as their brackets' third and fourth seeds, advancing to Wednesday's quarterfinals. 


Yoruba Moreu (Albuquerque, N.M.) went on to defeat Lyndon Patricio (Waianae, Hawaii), and Jamir Germany (Norfolk, Va.) was victorious over Izak Carlos (Olathe, Kan.). Moreu came out stronger in the second round and landed multiple blows on Patricio before carrying his aggression into the third round. He fought hard to the last bell, leading to his victory. 


Moreu will face Stewart in the next round, while Garcia and Germany will battle it for a spot in the semifinals.


 Alejandro, Mansour, and Timoteo lead the pack at 63.5 kg 


The two, three, and four seeds took care of their business to move on to the quarterfinals. Alejandro Alvarado (La Puente, Calif.) defeated Santana Draper (Fresno, Texas); Jonathan Mansour (San Diego, Calif.) took an RSC-I victory over Garret Rice (Dearborn, Mich.), while Noah Timoteo (Waianae, Hawaii) grabbed all five judges' cards over Kentrell Rouser (Pontiac, Mich.).


Of the three, Mansour looked strong and came out with immediate aggression to set the tone of the fight immediately, landing multiple combinations and powerful hooks on Rice before the bout was stopped in the third round. 


Other boxers advancing to the quarterfinals include Israel Rodriguez (Humble, Texas), Marcell Bonner (Cleveland, Ohio), Vershaun Lee (Davenport, Iowa) and Troy Nash (Colorado Springs, Colo.).


 Joseph Almajdi and Carlos Flowers look impressive in their wins


With all top four seeds having a bye, Joseph Almajdi (Fort Worth, Texas) and Carlos Flowers (Dover, Del.) stood out in their impressive victories. These two boxers stuck to their game plan and used their skill sets to their advantage to overpower their opponents and advance to the next round.


"First one down, three more to go. I'm ready," Flowers had to say after his impressive victory. 


Jirair Thompson (Inkster, Mich.) also fought and defeated Ebenezer Griffith (Centennial, Colo.), and Dante Kirkman (Palo Alto, Calif.) picked up an impressive win over Aaron Waldon (Georgetown, Ind.). Kirkman will now face the two-seed Jason Moreno (Philadelphia, Pa.), while Thompson steps into the ring against Keon Davis (Houston, Texas), the three-seed. Almajdi will take on Waianae, Hawaii’s Kamakani Waialae.


Flowers will face the number one seed, Benjamin Johnson (Upper Marlboro, Md.), in what could be the bout of the bracket between two boxers who have represented Team USA this past year. 


 Chaparro and Anderson advance to quarterfinals against top two seeds


Alexis Chaparro (Ridgewood, N.Y.) and Amir Anderson (Syracuse, N.Y.) stood out in the 80 kg weight class, winning unanimously in their respective bouts. Chaparro landed punch after punch on Delbert Taylor (Mckees Rocks, Pa.); Chaparro received two 10:8 scores in round one to start the bout before taking all five judges' cards in the end. Anderson and his powerful hook shots dominated Keoni Washington (Antioch, Calif.). These two talented boxers will face the two top seeds in the bracket. Chaparro will go against Nathan Lugo (Marietta, Ga.) and Anderson will face off against Obed Bartee-El (Colorado Springs, Colo.). 


Ethan Smith (Las Vegas, Nev.), the bracket's third seed, defeated Julian Delgado (Corpus Christi, Texas). However, Steven Colome (North Port, Calif.) upset the fourth seed, Theon Davis (Chicago, Ill.) on a unanimous decision. Other boxers taking victories include Xavier Washington (Midlothian, Texas) and Tyriic Trapp (Tinton Falls, N.J.). 


 Derae Crane with the punch of the day

Derae Crane (Houston, Texas) shined bright on Monday night as he gave out the first knockout of these Trials. Crane, who is in his third Olympic Trials and the oldest male boxer in Lafayette, started his third run with an absolute bang and statement. Crane is using his experience and power to push to Paris, as his goal is not just to win the Olympic Trials.

Kyree Brown Zellner (Virginia Beach, Va.), Malachi Georges (Teaneck, N.J.), Eric Post (Gardena, Calif.), Tyler Yavalar (Sarasota, Fla.), and Danel Brown (Philadelphia, Pa.) all secured victories to move on the next round.

Crane will fight Charles Pugh (East Cleveland, Ohio), the two-seed of the tournament, while Yavalar goes against the one-seed, Ben Turla (Kansas City, Mo.). Georges and Zellner will step into the ring together on Wednesday, with Post and Brown duking it out for a place in the semifinals.

Alonzo Neal stars bright in Super Heavyweight and ends day one with a bang

Alonzo Neal (Aurora, Colo.) knocked out Curtis Gee (Little Rock, Ark.) and secured the second official knockout of the tournament. With a powerful punch, Neal put Gee stumbling in the first 90 seconds of the bout, resulting in the referee calling the fight.

Other victories included Jessie Jombo (Grand Prairie, Texas) and Ty Jackson (Alexander, Ark.).

The 92+ kg quarterfinals are shaping up to be an exciting one, as Steven Williams (Chester, Pa.) will face Neal, as the two super heavyweights will look to advance to the semifinals, while Jombo and Jackson will look to upset Ali Feliz (Danbury, Conn.) and Darnell Thompson (McKinney, Texas), respectively.

Competition at the Olympic Trials will continue today, with the female brackets beginning at 6:00 pm. C.T. All male brackets will resume Wednesday night.

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