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The USA Women Split Their Continental Championships Bouts on the Second Day
by Julie Goldsticker
April 6, 2012
     
   
   
   
   

(COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO) – After a perfect opening day at the 2012 Women’s Continental Championships in Cornwall, Ontario Canada, the U.S. squad split their second day contests, winning their first two match-ups and dropping their final two bouts at the NAV Centre. Flyweight Marlen Esparza (Houston, Texas) and featherweight Tiara Brown (Lehigh Acres, Fla.) both won their tournament openers while lightweight Queen Underwood (Seattle, Wash.) and welterweight Raquel Miller (San Francisco, Calif.) didn’t enjoy the same success on Thursday.


Photo: Raquel Miller

Esparza enjoyed a convincing victory in her first bout of the tournament, a quarterfinal match-up with Pemela Benavidez of Argentina. Esparza claimed a 21-10 win over Benavidez in their flyweight match-up to move on today’s semifinal bouts where she will face Canada’s Mandy Bujold.

Featherweight Brown looked to make a statement in her tournament opener and she accomplished her mission in a bout with Edelme Jeffrey of Saint Lucia. Brown put an early end to the contest, stopping Jeffrey in the third round of the four round bout. Brown’s victory advances her to tonight’s semifinals and a match-up with Melissa Esquivel of Mexico.

Underwood faced off with 2011 Pan American Games bronze medalist Sandra Bizier of host nation, Canada. The American boxer dropped a 24-17 decision to Bizier, eliminating her from the tournament.

Welterweight Raquel Miller (San Francisco, Calif.) fell just short in a razor-close contest with Canada’s Myriam de Silva. Miller lost an 18-17 decision to de Silva in her first major international competition.

In addition to Esparza and Brown, bantamweight Christina Cruz (New York, N.Y.) will return to the tonight for a semifinal bout with Brazil’s Clelia Costa. Tonight’s action will also feature the highly anticipated tournament debut of 17-year-old middleweight sensation Claressa Shields (Flint, Mich.) as she faces Roseli Feitosa of Brazil in her open division international debut.

Light flyweight Alex Love (Monroe, Wash.), light heavyweight Franchon Crews (Baltimore, Md.) and heavyweight Victoria Perez (Ventura, Calif.) have berths in Saturday’s finals.

Team USA is being led by coaches Israel Acosta (Milwaukee, Wis.), Gloria Peek (Norfolk, Va.), Bruce Kawano (Pearl City, Hawaii) and Team Manager Joe Smith (Chattanooga, Tenn.). Dr. Ted Mills (Glen Cove, N.Y.) is working as the Team Physician with Patricia Pliner (Janesville, Wis.) joining the squad as the AIBA official.

Thursday U.S. Results
112 lbs: Marlen Esparza, Houston, Texas/USA dec. Pemela Benavidez, ARG, 21-10

125 lbs: Tiara Brown, Lehigh Acres, Fla./USA stopped Edelme Jeffrey, LCA, RSC-3

132 lbs: Sandra Bizier, CAN, dec. Queen Underwood, Seattle, Wash./USA, 24-17

152 lbs: Myriam de Silva, CAN, dec. Raquel Miller, San Francisco, Calif./USA, 18-17
 

 
     
     
   
 
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