WIESBADEN, Germany - It was an evening that offered something for everyone -- knockdowns, slugfests, giveaways and sheer bravado in the ring.
"We're here as part of our Black History Month Celebration -- we've got a great evening planned for you," said U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden Command Sgt. Maj. Sa'eed Mustafa.
And with that the first of nine bouts got underway -- a three-round demonstration of boxing craft with U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden's Nathaniel Barnd besting the Bavarian military community's Manuel Valdez. Barnd, who won the fight by decision, was also recognized as the best boxer of the night.
The home team returned in Bout two with middleweight Tylus Rodgers finishing off the Bavarian military community's Dustin Reed one minute and 35 seconds into the first round. Rodgers claimed the gold after Reed stood for three eight counts and the referee stopped the contest.
But the Bavarian military community let the home crowd know that they were far from finished starting with Bout three. In a light heavyweight showdown the Bavarian military community's Imo Aieti pounded fellow BMC slugger Sugar Cruz. After surviving a standing eight count in the third round, Cruz settled for silver against the victorious Aieti.
Bout four pitted two Wiesbaden fighters, Shawn Elliot and Nieko Gilliom, in a heavyweight contest. Although pretty evenly matched, Elliot kept up the pressure and went on to claim the three-round decision.
"It could have gone to anybody," said Elliot, a 4th Air Support Operations Squadron Airman. "It went back and forth -- it was a pretty even match."
Training for a triathlon paid off for the Bavarian military community's David Brown who took home the gold after winning a three-round decision against Wiesbaden's Arien Edwards in another heavyweight showdown. Brown's endurance was obvious as he wore down Edward's defenses.
"This (boxing) is kind of secondary," said the 2nd Battalion, 4th Cavalry Regiment, athlete. "All I've been doing is biking, running and swimming while training for a triathlon in South Africa."
Several boos from the crowd met the decision following Bout six -- a wild slugfest that saw the Bavarian military community's Clinton Lyons appear to knock down Spangdahlem's Arron Aylesworth. Visibly dazed, Aylesworth accepted the gold trophy after the referee stopped the contest and the announcer explained that Lyons had been disqualified for an illegal blow to the head.
Wiesbaden fighter Levi Aylsworth added to the gold claimed by members of the 4th ASOC with a three-round unanimous decision over the Bavarian military community's Joshua Grether in Bout seven.
"It was the first time ever, for me, putting on gloves," said Aylsworth, "the first time taking blows to the head."
The Wiesbaden boxer added that "it was a good feeling," to win the fight. "I felt pretty confident when that third round came around, but I was pretty tired."
A knockout 35 seconds into Round one of their super heavyweight bout saw Stuttgart's Jamaal Warren claim gold over the Bavarian military community's Joshua Goheen. The tone of the fight was set 10 seconds into the face-off with Goheen being sent to a neutral corner for a standing eight count before returning only to be knocked to the canvas 15 seconds later.
The evening's final match-up started off promising with the Bavarian military community's Gabriels Nichols storming out of the red corner to challenge Wiesbaden's Rubin Stackhouse. After trading a series of powerful punches, Nichols grimaced in pain, favoring his right elbow, and the referee stopped the contest at one minute and 15 seconds into Round one.
The decision awarded Stackhouse one more gold trophy to add to his collection before the U.S. Customs-Europe Soldier heads to his next duty assignment in Fort Stewart, Ga.
Five fighters went uncontested -- Wiesbaden's Justin Teodoro, Joel Flores, Derek Rowe, Lisa Manela and BMC's Isaac Chavez -- and one bout saw BMC's Fernando Mendoza claiming a walkover victory against Baumholder's Justin Earls.
Team trophies were awarded to the Bavarian military community (first place), U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden (second) and Team Wiesbaden (third place).

Page last updated Thu February 14th, 2013 at 16:47