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Rios wins gold in Meijer State Games


Ricardo Rios won the gold at Meijer State games.

The Meijer State Games of Michigan were held in Grand Rapids June 26 and 27, and two of our local athletes finished right up there with the best.

The best athletes came from all over Michigan to compete, and one of the sports that local athletes participated in was boxing. Cedar Springs’ Jeff Knapp and Ricardo Rios both boxed in the gold medal bouts for their respective weight class. Jeff lost a close decision in his bout against Nefty Chico of Holland’s Venture Boxing Club. Rios, however, was able to win the gold medal in his bout against Grand Rapid’s Burim Beqiri.

“I fought a smart fight,” said Rios. “I stayed in the middle of the ring and boxed him. I didn’t let him get me into a slugfest. I just controlled him in the middle of the ring.”

The Sand Lake Boxing Club will be holding a Boxing Exhibition Saturday July 9 at 5:00 p.m. Boxers from Grand Rapids, Holland and Mt. Pleasant will be putting their talents on display against the boxers of Sand Lake. Tickets will be $6. Proceeds from this event will be going toward the purchase of new uniforms for the Sand Lake Boxing team.

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Boxers in Golden Gloves championship


Sand Lake boxing club has had a great start to the 2011 Golden Glove Tournament. Sand Lake entered 7 boxers in this year’s tournament and of those seven, six have advanced to the championship bracket this Saturday at the 44th street Armory in Grand Rapids.

Kyle Dunmire lost a close decision to Benton Harbor’s Jeffrey Carter on Saturday March 12. Dunmire had Carter in trouble in the second round and forced a standing eight count but could not put him away and lost a 3-2 decision.

Rockford’s Zack Cross won his 165lb fight March 12 and will advance to the championship. Chad Bowens won his 132 lb fight with a first round stoppage of MGGA’s Joshua Potyraj and will also advance to the championship. Tyler Koesh and Cedar Springs’ Jeff Knapp will have to box each other in the 201lb sub-novice championship bout. Nate MacDonald was scheduled to box Friday March 18, but won by walk-over when his opponent could not compete due to a shoulder injury he suffered in the previous round. Nate will fight for the 141lb novice West Michigan Championship on Saturday.

Ricardo Rios of Cedar Springs won by decision over Burim Bequiri on Friday the 18th and will advance to the West Michigan 141 open championship. Zack Cross, Nate Macdonald, Chad Bowens and Ricardo Rios have also have qualified for the State Championships, which will be contested April 8th and 9th at the 44th street Armory in Grand Rapids.

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Boxing club undefeated at tournament


Ricardo Rios

Boxers from the Sand Lake Boxing Club competed in Bath, Michigan last Saturday, February 19. Sand Lake went 3-0 in Saturday’s bouts.

Lorenzo Esquivel started the night out by outpointing Ohio’s Brandon Raccio in his boxing debut. In the 8th bout of the night, Nick Ruvalcaba won by 3rd round TKO against Ohio’s Alex Hernandez. Ricardo Rios, competing in his first bout at the 132lb weight class, won via 3rd TKO against Grand Rapids Kevin Cole.

“I feel really strong in this weight class,” said Rios.

The 2011 Golden Gloves Tournament will be held March 12 at the 44th street armory in Grand Rapids. Boxers of the Sand Lake Boxing Club have turned up the intensity of their workouts in preparation for this year’s tournament. This year’s team includes many Cedar Spring boxers. Ricardo Rios will represent Sand Lake in the 132lb open division. Rios is a two time state runner up in the 141lb division. Nate Macdonald, 2010’s 152lb sub-novice city champion, will compete in the 141 novice division. Other local boxers include Nate Phelps at 165lb, Kyle Dunmire at 152lb and Jeff Knapp at 178lb.

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