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Team USA Grabs Three Victories During First Day of 2021 Strandja Tournament

by Brian Taylor, USA Boxing

Team USA grabbed three victories during the first day of competition at the 2021 Strandja Tournament in Sofia, Bulgaria. 

Andrea Medina (San Diego, Calif.) kicked off the tournament for the Americans in impressive fashion against India’s Sakshi. Medina, who won silver at the 2020 Strandja Tournament, took four out of the five judges’ cards to advance to tomorrow’s matchup against Aycan Guldagi of Turkey. 

Rashida Ellis (Lynn, Mass.) grabbed the second win of the day for Team USA. The lightweight’s 4-1 victory over Rimma Volossenko of Kazakhstan moved Ellis to the next round of competition on Wednesday, where she will go head-to-head against Morocco’s Chaymae Rhaddi.

Anthony Herrera (East Los Angeles, Calif.) closed out the first day of competition with a strong performance against Brazilian Ronaldo da Silva. Herrera, who won bronze at the 2020 edition of the Strandja Tournament, gave da Silva a standing eight count in the second round on his way to a 4-1 victory. The flyweight will face Shakhobidin Zoirov of Uzbekistan in Thursday’s quarterfinal bout. 

Darius Fulghum (Houston, Texas) had a tough matchup against India’s Kumar Naveen in his opening bout, falling short in a 3-2 decision to conclude his tournament run. 

Virginia Fuchs (Houston, Texas), Naomi Graham (Fayetteville, N.C.) and Charlie Sheehy (Brisbane, Calif.) will join Medina during tomorrow’s boxing sessions. Sheehy and Graham will be bouts two and five, respectively, during the first session of action, which begins at 4:00 a.m. EST, while Fuchs and Medina will be bouts four and 10 in the last session of the day that starts at 12:00 p.m. EST. 

National Head Coach
Billy Walsh (Colorado Springs, Colo.), along with National Strength and Conditioning Coach Jose Polanco (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and assistant coaches Tim Back (Cincinnati, Ohio), Marc Gargaro (Newton, Mass.), Christine Lopez (Rowlett, Texas) and Jeff Mays (San Antonio, Texas), are leading the American delegation at the 72nd edition of the Strandja Tournament, which has brought over 200 boxers from 31 different countries to compete. 

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Day 1 Results

52 kg:
Anthony Herrera, East Los Angeles, Calif./USA, dec. over Ronaldo da Silva/BRA, 4-1

57 kg:
Andrea Medina, San Diego, Calif./USA, dec. over Sakhsi Sakhsi/IND, 4-1

60 kg:
Rashida Ellis, Lynn, Mass./USA, dec. over Rimma Volossenko/KAZ, 4-1

91 kg: Kumar Naveen/IND dec. over
Darius Fulghum, Houston, Texas/USA, 3-2

Day 2 Bouts

51 kg:
Virginia Fuchs, Houston, Texas/USA, vs. Liubov Sharapova/RUS

57 kg:
Andrea Medina, San Diego, Calif./USA, vs. Aycan Guldagi/TUR

63 kg:
Charlie Sheehy, Brisbane, Calif./USA, vs. Dzmitry Dziashkevich/BLR

75 kg: Naomi Graham, Fayetteville, N.C./USA, vs. Anastasiia Chernokolenko/UKR