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Monday, March 25, 2013

Region 11 Amateurs at USA Boxing National Championships

By Ryan Maquiñana

The USA Boxing National Championships take place Mar. 30-Apr. 6 in Spokane, Wash.  Here's a look at the Region 11 hopefuls in each age division.

108 lbs.: Conrad Rendon, Fresno
114 lbs.: Brent Venegas, Sacramento
123 lbs.: Matthew Guerrero, Manteca; Efren Lopez, Fresno
132 lbs.: Eder Carrillo, Woodland; Rosino Legan, Gilroy
165 lbs.: Gilberto Alvarez, Oakland; Aaron Katzman, Menlo Park
178 lbs.: David Gaitan, North Highlands; Joey Gonzalez, Watsonville

106 lbs.: Marisol Lopez, Stratford
119 lbs.: Neesha Khan, San Francisco

123 lbs.: Andrew Moy, San Francisco
165 lbs.: Mike Fernandez, San Francisco; Bryant Sharifi, San Francisco
201+ lbs.: Andrew Phimister, El Cerrito

114 lbs.: Eros Correa, San Jose
123 lbs.: Steven Rapadas, Sacramento
152 lbs.: Jake Operskalski, Oakland
165 lbs.: Yuri Rybin, West Sacramento; Daniel Thomas, Concord
178 lbs.: Joaquin Lopez, Ukiah; Jasper McCargo, Oakland
201 lbs.: Anthony Hall, Santa Rosa; Erick Hernandez, Oakland
201+ lbs.: Ojayland Brown, Sacramento

112 lbs.: Marlen Esparza, San Carlos
119 lbs.: Casey Morton, San Francisco
141 lbs.: Nargis Shaghasi, San Lorenzo
165 lbs.: Raquel Miller, San Francisco

Friday, March 15, 2013

Vasquez Discusses Majority Decision Defeat to Muriqi

By Ryan Maquiñana

Hercules light heavyweight Paul Vasquez, whose inspiring story was featured on earlier this week, fought heavily favored Elvir Muriqi tooth-and-nail over eight rounds in Whippany, N.J.

However, Muriqi (40-5, 24 KOs) would emerge with his hand raised by a small margin, capturing a narrow majority decision (76-76, 77-75 twice) over the East Bay upstart.

After the fight, Vasquez (9-3-1, 3 KOs), who will donate his entire paycheck to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, spoke to

"It was a close fight, but I knew I'd be fighting the promoter, the crowd, and the refs.  My coach was saying I won six out of eight rounds.  Someone from the [New Jersey] State Athletic Commission apologized and even the promoter came up to me and said I won the fight. But I know how it goes."

"I staggered Muriqi multiple times.  His legs just wobbled in the seventh and eighth [rounds].  I hardly have any marks on my face. I didnt feel his power whatsoever.  Everytime I'd get him in the corner, the referee would stop the action and push him out of the corner, and that's when I was going to do my damage."

"I'm not done at all.  I'm glad I got to do some good with my cause and that a few more people know about it.  I'll head home to the Bay tomorrow, see my wife and kids, and get back in the gym soon."'s Ryan Maquiñana is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and Ring Magazine’s Ratings Panel. E-mail him at, check out his weekly column for Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, his archive for, or follow him on Twitter: @RMaq28.

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Monday, March 11, 2013

NorCal Boxing Weekend: Escalante dominates Casillas

By Ryan Maquiñana


-San Carlos' Bruno Escalante dominates Casillas in Redwood City
-S.F.'s Jonathan Chicas, Ricardo Pinell, San Bruno's Joe Gumina notch wins on undercard
-Salinas prospect Preston Freeman slain in St. Louis at only 20 years old
-VIDEO: Gilroy's Robert Guerrero reacts to his Showtime confrontation with Floyd Mayweather
-VIDEO: Oakland's Andre Ward trains in the ring for the first time since shoulder surgery
-Olympic Trials runner-up LaRon Mitchell of S.F. wins his pro debut
-NorCal amateurs advance to Nationals after winning box-offs (all the champions)