Team USA goes 2-1 on third day of 2023 Santiago Pan American Games
by Brian Taylor, USA Boxing
Flyweight elite duo, Roscoe Hill (Spring, Texas) and Jennifer Lozano (Laredo, Texas), secured Team USA’s first victories at the 2023 Santiago Pan American Games, ending the day 2-1 for USA Boxing.
2021 World Championships silver medalist Hill had to bounce back after the opening round against Cuba’s Alejandro Claro Fiz to pick up Team USA’s first win in Santiago.
Hill, who noted the first round was tough and need to do more moving, did land a clean shot in the last 20 seconds that resulted in the referee to give Fiz a standing eight count, however, all five judges scored the round 10-9 in favor of Cuba. The American picked up the pace in the second round, but saw the judges’ score the round 3-2 in favor of Fiz.
With the bout on the line, Hill needed to impress the five judges, as well as receive at least one 10-8 from the judges to secure the victory. He used his unique style to make his opponent miss him multiple times, as well as landed clean blows to take all five judges’ cards in the final round, including one 10-8 which secured his 3-2 victory and a spot in the next round.
“I am feeling good, but the first round was tough. I was sitting there standing,” stated Hill after his bout. “I had to dig into my bag of tricks and do what I needed to do. What can I say, God is good.”
Hill will return to the ring on Tuesday for a quarterfinal matchup against 2016 Olympic silver medalist Yurberjen Martinez of Colombia.
Lozano grabbed Team USA’s second win of the day by way of a 3-2 decision over Susan Aguas of Ecuador.
Lozano jumped to an early 3-2 lead following the first round that saw both opponents start at a slower pace, trying to figure each other out. The American stepped it up in the second round, landing cleaner combinations and jabs to the body and head to take the round, 4-1.
The final round saw Aguas try to make a last-minute push, winning the round 4-1, however, was too late. Lozano was victorious and is advancing to the quarterfinals against Tayonis Cedeno of Venezuela on Tuesday.
Robby Gonzales (Las Vegas, Nev.) met a familiar opponent, Christian Javier Pinales of Dominican Republic, to close out the day for the Americans. Gonzales had to overcome a tough obstacle after falling behind, 5-0 after the first round. However, Gonzales came out in the second round aggressive and hitting multiple combinations on Pinales to take the second round, 4-1. The third and final round was another close round, with the judges scoring it 3-2 in favor of Pinales, resulting in the Dominican to take an overall 3-2 decision.
The fourth day of action in Santiago will feature four members of Team USA, including 2022 Youth World Champion Yoseline Perez (Houston, Texas), who will kick start the day in the opening bout of the morning session against Yeni Arias of Colombia. Omari Jones (Orlando, Fla.) is the next boxer to represent the United State and will take on Puerto Rico’s Angel Perez during the 10th bout.
The second session, starting at 4:00 p.m. ET, will see Jajaira Gonzalez (Glendora, Calif.) go head-to-head with Canada’s Garinder Takhar in bout three, and Emilio Garcia (Laredo, Texas) facing Venezuela’s Jesus Nazaret Cova Romero in the sixth bout.
USA Boxing Head Coach Billy Walsh (Colorado Springs, Colo.) is leading Team USA in Santiago, along with National Resident Coach Timothy Nolan (Rochester, N.Y.), National Development Coach Chad Wigle (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and assistant coach Christine Lopez (Rowlett, Texas).
This year’s Pan American Games marks the 19th edition, which includes 174 boxers from 27 different countries taking to the ring in the first qualifier for the Americas to next summer’s Olympic Games in Paris.
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Day 3 Results
50 kg: Jennifer Lozano, Laredo, Texas/USA, dec. over Susan Meylin Aguas Chala/ECU, 3-2
51 kg: Roscoe Hill, Spring, Texas/USA, dec. over Alejandro Claro Fiz/CUB, 3-2
80 kg: Christian Javier Pinales/DOM dec. over Robby Gonzales, Las Vegas, Nev./USA, 3-2
Day 4 Schedule
10:00 a.m. ET Session
54 kg: Yoseline Perez, Houston, Texas/USA, vs. Yeni Marcela Arias Castaneda/COL
71 kg: Omari Jones, Orlando, Fla./USA, vs. Angel Llanos Perez/PUR
4:00 p.m. ET Session
60 kg: Jajaira Gonzalez, Glendora, Calif./USA, vs. Garinder Takhar/CAN
63.5 kg: Emilio Garcia, Laredo, Texas/USA, vs. Jesus Nazaret Cova Romero/VEN