MetroSports Magazine

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MetroSports Magazine

May 2018

1st Annual MSG Ring Masters Championships at Madison Square Garden Culmination of the 2018 USA Boxing Metro Metropolitan Qualifier

Contents May 2018

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Features 4 1st Annual MSG Ring Masters Championships New York’s Premier Amateur Boxing Tournament Takes Center Stage at Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater 7 In Their Own Words USA Boxing Metro Qualifier Winners and MSG Ring Masters Champions Talk About Their Experience 8 Sarah Thomas : Female Athlete of the Tournament Hofstra Graduate and Personal Trainer Sarah Thomas Goes One-on-One in a MetroSports Magazine Interview 10 Scholar-Athlete: Steven Galeano City College Scholar and 2018 Ring Masters 141 Pound Open Champion Talks About Winning the Johnnie Woulewich Scholar-Athlete Award 12 Bout by Bout Photographs Photos and Results of all MSG Ring Masters Championship Bouts

Action Photography by Clark Thompson

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Train Like a Champion. Train with a Champion. MetroSports Magazine’s former Athlete of the Month and cover of our May-June 2015 issue, Keisher “Fire” McLeod, a former NY Golden Gloves Champion, current NYS Flyweight Champion and current WIBA World Flyweight Champion can now be your personal boxing trainer at the world famous Gleason’s Gym.

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MetroSports Magazine (MSM) is published six times a year by the New York Sports Photo Group. MSM is available online and can be downloaded in electronic format for viewing on tablet and hand-held devices, laptop and desktop computers and purchased as full-color glossy print editions. Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Art Director: Warren Rosenberg Publisher: New York Sports Photo Group: Features Editor: Warren Rosenberg Director of Photography: Clark Thompson Social Media: Clark Thompson Photo Contributors: Clark Thompson Warren Rosenberg Proofreader: Melissa Tougas Advertising: For rate card contact Please direct all inquiries to: Visit us on the web at:

MetroSports Magazine accepts and welcomes photos, short articles, opinions and letters from our readers. There is no guarantee that unsolicited contributions will be published and MetroSports Magazine assumes no responsibility for failure to publish or for editing published contributions. The Contents of MetroSports Magazine consist of copyrightable and/or copyrighted material and cannot be reproduced without the express written consent of the publishers.

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1st Annual MSG Ring Masters Championships New York Metro Area’s Premier Amateur Boxing Tournament Returns to Madison Square Garden After a 12 Year Absence adison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater hosted a sell-out Mcrowd on Friday evening, April 20, 2018, for the first Annual

MSG Ring Masters Championships organized by U.S.A. Boxing Metro and Madison Square Garden. The evening of championship amateur boxing featured twenty-three bouts representing winning athletes who earned a place on the card through their performance in the Metropolitan Qualifier: Road to the Garden conducted over the course of the prior two months throughout the New York metropolitan region by U.S.A. Boxing Metro. The forty-six participants competing in the MSG Ring Masters Championships, representing twenty-five regional boxing clubs, were narrowed down from a field of 600 athletes drawn from fifty-four clubs. Also featured was a 3-round bout between law enforcement officers of the NYPD Finest Boxing Team and the NYCD Boldest Boxing Team and a 3-round bout between a member of the NYPD Finest Boxing Team and a fighter from Champs Boxing Club. This year’s Metropolitan Qualifier: The Road to Garden, was the year’s premier amateur boxing event in the New York metropolitan region. The Metropolitan Qualifier: Road to the Garden and the culminating MSG Ring Masters Championships at Madison Square Garden provided an opportunity for both men and women, ranging in age from 8 years old through masters level. Participating athletes included boxers from all five NYC boroughs and the eight surrounding counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Dutchess, Orange, Sullivan and Ulster. For those competing in the 8 – 18 year old age group, the goal is a chance to qualify for the Junior National Olympics which will take place in Charleston, West Virginia on June 24-30. For those fighting in the 19 – 40 year old group, the prize will be a shot at the National Golden Gloves Tournament scheduled for May 13 in Omaha Nebraska. 4 | May 2018

Photo: Anthony Quintano under the Creative Commons License

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The USA Boxing Metropolitan Association, better As might be expected in the world’s most famous known as USA Boxing Metro, is one of the 56 Local boxing arena, the event was graced with the presBoxing Committees of USA Boxing, the national gov- ence of numerous boxing luninaries inclding: erning body (NGB) overseeing amateur boxing in the Paul Malignaggi former World Champ United States under the aegis of the US Olympic Com- Juan Laporte former WBC Champ mittee. USA Boxing Metro is comprised of 69 boxing Eric kelly Vice Corespondent clubs throughout USA Boxing Metro’s region. Current- Iran Barkley former WBC ly presiding over the Metropolitan LBC’s Board of Di- Junior Jones Former World Champ rectors is world champion boxer and New York City el- Jill Diamond WBC REP ementary school teacher at P.S. 183, Sonya Lamonakis. Aaron Superman Davis former World Champ Seamus McDonagh fought Evander Holyfield One notable item about this year’s Metropolitan Alecia Ashley Guinness Book of World Record title holder for oldest world champion Qualifier is the return of the tournament’s culminating event to Madison Square Garden, the World’s Two time Gold Medalist Claressa Shields Most Famous Arena, and home to the historic bouts And up-and coming boxers: Chris BHop Colbert of Jack Dempsey vs Bill Brennan (1920), Sugar Ray Josue Vargas Robinson vs Henry Armstrong (1943), Joe Louis vs Edgar Berlanga Rocky Marciano (1951), and, of course, Muhammed Brian Ceballo Ali vs Joe Frazier I (1971) and II (1974). Official of the Tournament Sharon Scrima Female Athlete of the Tournament Sarah Thomas Male Athlete of the Tournament Reshat Mati Athlete Scholar of the Tournament Steven Galeano Sportsmanship Award Emanuel White “We have not had a National Qualifier in MSG since 2012, and boy was this a knockout show.” Sonya Lamonakis, USA Boxing Metro President

Above: Volunteer Tournament Organizers and Officials Pose with USA Boxing Metro President, Sonya Lamonakis

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In Their Own Words This fight was very valuable for me because four days after my first fight of the tournament I suffered from a problem outside the ring which led me to have an emergency surgery. The doctor said I could not fight for 6 weeks, but my coach and I decided to continue with the tournament. Four days after my surgery I fought again, which we won by knockout in the second round, after that fight I knew that I was in this tournament for a special reason and I told my coach if this surgery could not stop me, nobody will be able to stop me, and that’s how it was. Every single person they put in front of me in this tournament they got dropped. I took the 141 novice class, I called that #GODPLANS

Saul De Los Santos It was an unbelievable experience. For me to become the first annual MSG Ring Master Champion and the Most Outstanding Open Elite Fghter of the tournament is amazing. Hard work really does pay off and I couldn’t thank my father Adrian Mati, Sosa , Pat Russo, Teddy Atlas, and all my family and friends who supported me throughout the tournament and I’m truly grateful to be able to represent Atlas cops and kids and show that their foundation really does help kids for fill their dreams.

Reshat Mati Adversity builds STRENGTH, COURAGE AND CONFIDENCE. They thought I ain’t have it in me. They threw every putdown every negative vibe they could at me to break me but I got the fu--ing job done in Madison Square Garden. Holla at ya 2018 Ring Master Metropolitan Qualifier Champion. Fought 3 fights and worked my ass off for this everything EARNED nothing given. Thank you I’ve learned from all 3 of my opponents. Humbled. See our 1-on-1 interview with Nyisha in the Mar/Apr 2018 MetroSports Magazine

Nyisha Goodluck MetroSports Magazine | 7

Female Athlete of the Tournament: Sarah Thomas MSM: Congratulations on winning the women’s “Athlete of the Tournament” award. What does winning this award mean to you? ST: Winning female “Athlete of the Tournament” is something I am definitely proud of. I feel like I have grown a lot as an athlete and a person recently. I tried to fight at my best this tournament and I also made sure to show respect to my opponents and all the USA boxing members who made this tournament possible. I also was very happy to have Sonya present the award to me. I look up to her a lot. She’s a great fighter and a nice person. We’ve noticed that you started your fighting career in MMA and then transitioned into boxing. Is there something in particular that makes MMA training and competition a valuable asset for boxers? ST: I think MMA requires you to be very physically strong. From all the years I have spent grappling, I have become pretty strong for my size and build. In MMA, you can be kicked and kneed and tossed around. I think that has given me the confidence to stand with anyone. Even if I do not win, I am less afraid of taking punches after I have been on the receiving end of some hard kicks! But, of course, the sports are very different. Boxers have much better footwork and head movement. And that requires a lot of practice! Combat sports have taught me patience and discipline. However, I think the best reward is that I can look into the mirror and be satisfied with the person looking back. When you compete, you cannot “fake it” like you can in many other aspects of life. You can’t talk your way out of a fight once the bell rings. It’s up to you to prepare. And that’s not easy! I think anyone who has competed in combat sports should be proud of themselves. MSM: Care to tell us about your personal training business or put a plug in for soliciting clients? ST: I train people in their homes and also at D Lion Boxing in Syosset, NY (Long Island). We are actually starting an all women’s boxing program if anyone reading this wants to join. We are also starting a conditioning class that I will be teaching.

MSM: What advice would you give to young girls preparing to enter competitive sports in general and boxing specifically? ST: Do what YOU want to do. Missing some parties will never be something you regret. But, partying and missing games or practice, you’ll always regret! Surround yourself with positive people who understand you and motivate you. Definitely find a good coach. Remember that only YOU can stop yourself from succeeding! Most importantly, have fun!!! MSM: What’s next for your boxing career? Any thoughts about turning pro? ST: The end of this past December is when I officially started training only boxing and left MMA. I feel like I have A LOT to learn. I would like to do some big tournaments and compete against the best girls to get a feel for where I am at. I definitely would like to fight professionally, but I’ll leave that to my coaches to decide when. I want to make sure I am ready so that I can have a good career. MSM: Is there anyone you’d like to recognize or thank for your success in the Metropolitan Qualifiers and Ring Masters Championship? ST: My coaches Herman Williams and Armando DeLeon definitely. They put so much time into me and really believed in me and my decision to go from MMA to boxing. My strength and conditioning coach Dave (Scooter) Honig at Competitive Edge Athletics also put so much work into me. He has great fighters like Danny Jacobs and Sadam Ali and would still give me attention and cared a lot about my performance. Besides my coaches, I am definitely thankful for USA Boxing metro and all the work they put in to make this tournament happen! I am also thankful for all the awesome female boxers I see succeeding. That really motivates me!!

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Scholar-Athlete Steven Galeano Steven Galeano, who defeated Deyshawn Williams in the 141 pound Open Division was named as USA Boxing Metro’s 2018 Johnnie Woluewich Award winner for excelling in both boxing and academic achievements. Galeano is a sophomore at CUNY’s City College with a 3.20 Grade Point Average. Johnnie Woluewich was a former USA Boxing Metro president and the award was presented by Johnnie Woluewich, Jr., his son. MSM: What does it mean to you to have been honored as the Athlete-Scholar of the tournament? SG: To win the Johnnie Woulewich award was an honor, he made so much happen during his time for the fighters and pupils of Metro. To be attached to his history will always be something to look back and be proud of. Education in the sport of boxing, a land of opportunity, unfortunately, has largely be ignored. To spread the importance of education has been a mission but one I continue to pursue. Its difficult as it has come with its fair shares of obstacles as I focus on my studies and boxing. However, winning awards such as this will always give me the extra push to remember why I continue to do it. Why? It grows from my love for education and to spread positivity. MSM: What first led you to pursue boxing as your athletic activity? SG: Honestly, my brothers Edwin and Chris Galeano motivated me several years after they started. I was always in the gym around them and while Chris was the only one who stood in the sport, Edwin held that passion in a different sense. Chris Galeano went on to win 2 Daily News Golden Gloves, the 2013 USA Boxing Championships and currently stands at 10-1 as a professional, they initially motivated me. MSM: When people who know you as a scholar find out that you’re also a successful boxer, what is their first response? SG: Most people never find out unless they hear stories about me or connect with me on social networks! Im a humble but social kid with a huge

smile so when they find out it’s a shock. They hear how I express myself very finely and seem confused that I’m a vicious and successful boxer. It’s like I live two lives! The main line I always hear - I would have never thought that you were a great boxer, never gets old. MSM: As you move toward completion of your college studies, graduate and ultimately move into your chosen profession, do you intend to continue to box? Are there any aspirations to box professionally? SG: I plan to box professionally very soon, it’s a conundrum considering my studies but such a move could come sooner than later. After finishing my studies, depending on where my career has progressed, hopefully extremely well, then I’d like to try my hand at boxing full-time. My father has been extremely pleased with my educational work and would happily invest in whichever moves I make at the time. I will become a professional boxer! MSM: Is there anyone you’d like to recognize for helping you with your boxing career and claiming your championship and your award? SG: My trainer Marc Farrait and father Edwin Galeano. I’ve been with my trainer since December 2015 and I’ve given him and my father so many headaches. We’ve gone through countless injuries and lost time, a lot of it contributed to my sternness but they’ve always stuck with me hoping I’d put it all together. I’ve been back in the gym for 6 months now on the back-end of a 9-month layoff and since my return I’ve been all ears looking to improve in any way and here we are today! They’re the reason I’m able to sit here and speak to you on such accomplishments today! MetroSports Magazine | 11

106 Pound Open Female Juliette Ladisa Champs Boxing Club

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Sabrina Slattery Sweatbox

112 Pound Open Female Kathreen Sterling Gleason’s Athletic Club


Lina Vezzani-Katano Church Street Boxing

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114 Pound Open Male Andy Dominguez Mendez Boxing Club

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Gerardo Vazquez Atlas Cops & Kids

119 Pound Open Female Iman Elizabeth James Gleason’s Athletic Club


Gabriella Gulfin Gleason’s Athletic Club

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123 Pound Novice Male Lawrence Bautista Yonkers PAL

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Justice Bland PacPlex Boxing Club

123 Pound Open Male Dominique Crowder New York Athletic Club


Daniil Platonovschi Atlas Cops & Kids

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125 Pound Open Female Nyisha Goodluck Gleason’s Athletic Club

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Meagan Owen SouthBox

132 Pound Novice Male Ronny Reyes Morris Park Boxing Club


Taqee McDaniel Eastern Queens Boxing Club

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132 Pound Open Female Jennifer Lopez Mendez Boxing Club

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Gvantsa Pantsulaia Gleason’s Athletic Club

132 Pound Open Male Brandon Browne Atlas Cops & Kids


Jonabek Khotamov Atlas Cops & Kids

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141 Pound Novice Male Saul De Los Santos Brotherhood Boxing Club

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Adel Lakrouf

Underground Boxing Club

141 Pound Open Female Sarah Thomas


Macarena Soto Freeport PAL

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141 Pound Open Male Steven Galeano


Bronxchester Boxing Club

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Deyshawn Williams Eastern Queens Boxing Club

152 Pound Novice Male David Moore Freeport PAL


Zachary Blumberg Freeport PAL

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152 Pound Open Male Reshat Mati Atlas Cops & Kids

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Alex Vargas Finest Fitness

165 Pound Novice Male John McDonagh


Woodside Boxing Academy

Marco Cruz Atlas Cops & Kids

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165 Pound Open Male Nikita Ababiy Atlas Cops & Kids

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Brett Pastore Animals MMA

178 Pound Novice Male Fabio Guzman


Brotherhood Boxing Club

Edwing Lachapelle New Bed-Stuy Boxing Club

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178 Pound Open Male Afunwa King El Maestro Boxing Club

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Kristiani Shytani Morris Park Boxing Club

201 Pound Novice Male Orville Crooks Mendez Boxing Club


Calvin Belgrave Starrett City Boxing Club

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201 Pound Open Male Gergo Savoly


Underground Boxing Club

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Matthew Tinker New York Athletic Club

201+ Pound Master Male Jonathan Troncoso NYPD Finest Boxing


Richard Adamson II Champs Boxing Club

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201+ Pound Novice Male Pryce Taylor Atlas Cops & Kids

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Jeremiah Gurley Gleason’s Athletic Club

201+ Pound Open Male Nkosi Solomon Altlas Cops & Kids

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Michael Cserenyi Royals Boxing Club

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NYPD Finest vs NYCD Boldest

Jobanny Concepcion


Jamaal Spence

NYCD Boldest

NYPD Finest

Additional 2018 Ring Masters Champions who were awarded wins prior to the MSG event: 165-pound Open Female: Leah Cooper: Walkover 178-pound Open Female: Krystal Dixon (Champs BC): Walkover USA Boxing Metro and MetroSports Magazine wishes to recognize the following sponsors for their generous support of the Metropolitan Qualifiers and Ring Masters Championships:

WBC Amateurs City NYPD Boxing Ringside

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