Seven young U.S. Boxers of whom we should be extremely proud. Today we should all celebrate in their glory as they just returned from the Independence Cup Tournament in Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic. It is a first for our country in many years. Team USA, with only 6 men’s and 2 women’s boxers, finished second overall, slightly behind Cuba’s Olympic team.

For some athletes, this was their first international competition, where 18 teams were present. Cuba sent its Olympic Team! The United States won 7 medals.

Erickson Lubin beat Yasniel Toledo Lopez, a Cuban Olympic and World medalist, in the semifinals, and claimed a gold medal with a 34-5 decision in his first international competition. Lubin is only 17 years old.

Shawn Simpson likewise cleared everyone in his path to the top of the podium. Leroy Davila, Rashidi Ellis and Kenneth Sims returned with silver medals. Our two women’s boxers, Queen Underwood and Raquel Miller both won bronze.

Congratulations are in order to the athletes for their performance and dedication during training camp, as well as the coaching staff of Ed Rivas, Jason Galarza and Pedro Roque!

This was a great tournament. We are back. It is time for us to let go of all of the problems we have been facing to rejoice with these outstanding young athletes. It has been too long and too seldom that our National Anthem has been played as our athletes bow their heads to receive their gold medal.

The 2013 Independence Cup Tournament was made possible through a private donor from Florida. Let’s come together, forget our problems, let every member feel pride of country. Let’s celebrate a memorable victory and a new beginning for USA Boxing.

Courtesy of

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