South Florida Boxing Notebook
By Brad Marchetti, Doghouse Boxing (May 21, 2009)  
The South Florida boxing scene is on the rise with a slew of prospects and talent laden fight cards making their rounds. Quickly becoming a hot bed for top-level boxing, South Florida could very well be a smaller version of Las Vegas boxing. Most recently 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist Yan Barthelemy, 8-1, 1 KO, captured his first regional title belt this past weekend with a dominating decison win over Alexander Espinoza, 8-1, 7 KO's. The Cuban Bantamweight Barthelemy has a bright future with his southpaw stance, fast hands and strong promotional backing from Henry Rivalta's Top-Level boxing. A couple other Top-Level boxing fighters on a tear is Jr. Middleweight Tony Roman, 9-0, 4 KO's, who is slated for a regional title fight in the near future and former Cuban amateur star Stalin Lopez, 3-0, 2 KO's, also rising up the ranks quickly. Tony Roman was an accomplished amateur that has made a nice transition to the pro's with his well-rounded ability and aggressive style. The Lightweight Stalin Lopez is an intelligent puncher that is coming off a one-punch, 1st round KO over prospect Angino Perez, 7-3, 6 KO's.

Also making noise this past weekend was former 201 LB. national amateur champion Emmanuel Augustama who debuted with a crushing 3rd round KO over 6'9" Jorge Flores. The Hatian Augustama who trains out of the well-regarded Normandy Gym on Miami Beach is a well-schooled, smaller heavyweight that packs a wallop in his left hook. This weekend local Welterweights will do battle on ESPN2 Friday Night Fights when 22-year old Antwone Smith, 15-1, 8 KO's, faces rugged Colombian Richard Gutierrez, 24-2-1,14 KO's, in a 10-rounder. Smith is a talented boxer with a nice set of tools but will be meeting a more experienced, durable slugger in Gutierrez who should test him. The winner of this battle should be considered a top-30 ranked Welterweight

Also on ESPN2 Friday Night Fights June 5th will be a battle between two South Florida Welterweight prospects when Joey Hernandez, 15-0, 8 KO's, meets Damian Frias, 16-1, 7 KO's in Chicago. The southpaw Hernandez is a top-30 ranked Welterweight that is broad shouldered, aggressive and technically sound. Last but not least May 30th W.B.C Welterweight champion Andre Berto, 24-0, 19 KO's, defends his title for the 3rd time against Miami-based Colombian Juan Urango, 21-1, 16 KO's at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida. The Berto vs Urango fight is a blue-chip match-up of the smooth boxer Berto squaring off against the dynamite of the slugger Urango.

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