Friday, January 17, 2020

Vic Toney set for February All-Ohio bout in Las Vegas


Youngstown native Vic Toney once had a very promising and active career having an unblemished record 5-0 record after his first year and a half of his pro career which started in November of 2014.

Now Toney is facing an almost two and a half year lay off since suffering his lone loss, a lopsided 6-round middleweight bout to 6'5" Sebastian Fundora who is currently 13-0-1.

Lucky for Youngstown boxing fans, the 31-year-old Toney has sensed the time is now to get his career back on track as he will take on Dayton native Will Clemons (4-0, 2 KOs) who now calls Las Vegas home according to his BoxRec in a scheduled 6-round middleweight contest on February 13th at the Westgate Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas. 

Toney (5-1, 4 KOs) won't be the only one having to shake off some ring rust as the 35-year-old Clemons was inactive during all of 2019 having last fought September of 2018.

Stay tuned for more info on what promises to be a great showdown for Buckeye State bragging rights.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Pittsburgh's Conway set for the big stage in Las Vegas


Through the first four years of his pro career, 24-year-old Pittsburgh native Matt Conway (17-1, 7 KOs) made a name for himself regionally having fought all his matches in the Pennsylvania and West Virginia region.

That all changed his last time out in October when the super featherweight known as Sweet Child ventured out to Reno, Nevada to fight 25-year-old Las Vegas prospect Francisco Esparza a few months ago in October in a match televised on the ESPN+ platform.

Despite dropping a highly controversial split decision to Esparza in a match which saw Conway taste the canvas early only to battle back and control the remainder of the 8-round bout in the eyes of many, the always humble fighter has now been rewarded with a chance of a lifetime.

Conway, a graduate of Baldwin High School in suburban Pittsburgh, will take on one of the top pound-for-pound prospects in boxing, 19-year-old Gabriel Flores, Jr. of Stockton, CA on the undercard of the Tyson Fury-Deontay Wilder match on February 22 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in an 8-round junior lightweight matchup.

Flores Jr. (16-0, 6 KOs) had an active 2019 having fought five times including a unanimous decision his last time out in November over Brazilian Aelio Mesquita and will start the New Year with the toughest test in his young career in Conway.

Conway took to his social media a few days ago to break the news of the highly anticipated preliminary fight which will air on ESPN+ before the telecast shifts to Pay Per View for Fury-Wilder stating "The things I’m experiencing are things that money cannot buy, let’s work baby".

Stay tuned as we will bring you more developments on this bout.

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Hensley advances to Silver Gloves Regional


The amateur team of Southside Boxing Club fought hard and left it all in the ring this past weekend in Cleveland, but in the end only one representative will be advancing through to regional action.

Zion Hensley, 10, a student in the Western Reserve school district secured a spot in the regional portion of the Silver Gloves competition which will be held in Cleveland the weekend of January 18th and 19th.

"Great," said Hensley who fights at 70-pounds said when asked how it feels to secure spot in the regional portion of the tournament.  "I really feel like I am inspiring other girls".

Inspiring other girls has come with a price, however.  The price of hard work which Hensley displays with the time she puts in at Southside Boxing Club with trainer Jack Loew.

"I worked extremely hard, I've run miles in the cold, I sparred three to four times a week and I picked up vertimax training with Kelly Pavlik".

With two previous bouts under her belt, Hensley knew that she needed to pick up the training for tournament competition.

"There is more pressure because you fight more fighters and you can fight everyday," said Hensley of stepping up to tournament action.

If Hensley can get through the next stages of the competition she will advance to Independent, Missouri for the National portion of the Silver Gloves being held January 29th through February 3rd.

Those wishing to help support Hensley with travel expenses can do so by purchasing a shirt for $20 at the following locations or by contacting Zion's dad, Jason at 330-942-7409:

-Kelly Pavlik's Mi Gym, 114 E. Park Columbiana, OH 
-Brian Ferguson's Mahoning Avenue Baber Shop, 10 Lexington Place on the corner of Mahoning Ave. and Meridian Rd.
-Jack Loews South Side Boxing Club, 3310 Erie St., Youngstown, OH.

Friday, January 3, 2020

South Side Boxing Club Amateurs set for state Silver Gloves this weekend


Jack Loew's Southside Boxing Club amateur team will have a busy weekend as six youth fighters are set to compete in the state Silver Gloves tournament this weekend in Cleveland in hopes to advancing to the regionals also being held in Cleveland in during the weekend of January 18th and 19th.

Representing Southside Boxing Club who train under the direction and watchful eye of Loew and Vinny O'Neill are the following:

Jacorian Dent, 15, 114 lbs.
Tyrel Richards, 15, 132 lbs.
Aseel Alsmameh, 16, 138 lbs.
Juan Jauregui, 10, 85 lbs.
Xavier Martinez, 8, 65 lbs. 
Zion Hensley, 10, 70 lbs. 

Nationals for the Silver Gloves will be held in Independent, Missouri from January 29th to February 3rd.

Fight Day: Rosenberger set to start 2020 with a bang


It's only fitting that not only the busiest fighter in Youngstown but in the state of Ohio will start his New Year between the ropes as Dann Rosenberger will travel to Cincinnati to take on Charles Stanford in a welterweight contest.

Having fought 5-times in 2019, the 29-year-old Rosenberger had some unique challenges in his trainign fighting this close to the Holidays. 

"Mixing in training during the holidays was definitely a challenge," said Rosenberger.  "Plus working and running my business on top of everything especially when I'm moving back down to 147 so I had to be on a very strict diet".

Not only did Rosenberger have to fight off the temptations of the Holiday meals, he is also fighting the memories of his early November loss that haunts him.

"I didn't fight to the best of my ability," Rosenberger said of his unanimous decision loss to Mikey Dahlman in suburban Chicago which dropped his record to 6-8-4.  "No excuses for losing that fight which I trained hard for and I was in great shape but it is what it is".

Rosenberger though feels that he's at a good weight now at 147.

"I let the size difference get in my head that last fight but I'm leaving that in the past and I want to start a fresh year".

Speaking of a fresh year, how many times can we expect to see Rosenberger in the ring in 2020?

"I'm hoping 7 to 8 times," stated Rosenberger.  "I want to prove to myself that I'm as a good as a fighter I know I can be and take the better and smarter fights for me".

So what does Rosenberger know of his first opponent of the New Year?

"I don't know all that much about him besides he has 25-plus pro MMA fights and 5 pro boxing matches so I'm sure he is great shape and seems to stay active whether it's MMA or boxing so I have to fight smart and set the tempo".

Rosenberger knows that a win tonight can set the tone for a great 2020.

"I like to stay active, it keeps me in shape and plus an all around better person and those who fight more often are always great dudes and understand the love of the sport.  I expect myself to pull out more victories this year and work harder than I already have been".

Rosenberger and Stanford will get it on tonight at the Blue Note as promoter Bradley Farmer will be putting on the event which will also include crowd favorite Latiss "No Love" Norman of Cleveland.

Norman, 27, of East Cleveland will look to even up his record which stands at 4-5 as he will take on Ryan McIntosh of Indiana in a super middleweight contest.

Those wishing to watch this evenings fights which get underway at 7:00 PM can do so my purchasing the stream at FITE.TV for $14.99.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Danny Rosenberger slated for early 2020 bout


The busiest fighter in Youngstown, Danny Rosenberger will look to start off the new year with a win as the 29-year-old middleweight is slated to take on fellow Ohio native Charlie Stanford on January 3rd in Harrison, OH.

Stanford, 33, who also has experience in MMA is currently 2-3 while Rosenberger will enter the fight with a 6-8-4 record after having his two win fight streak snapped earlier this month.

The schedule fight, which is being promoted by Family Ties will take place at the Blue Note Event Center with tickets starting a $30 and available at cincyticket.com.

Stay tuned for more information as fight day approaches. 

Friday, November 29, 2019

Fighting Together: Local Rock Steady class punches back against Parkinson's

Paula Caldwell

Boxing is sometimes considered one of the loneliest sports with no teammates to rely on or to help you while you absorb blow after blow while looking for any ounce of energy to fight off the ropes and punch back, but it is in the sport of boxing that a group of Mahoning Valley residents have found hope as they fight together.

Rock Steady Boxing is a program based in Indianapolis which launched in 2006 by two friends, Scott Newman and Vince Perez.

Newman was diagnosed with Parkinson's at age 40 and Perez was not going to let his friend fight alone and turned to his background in boxing as a Golden Glove fighter and designed a program to attack the disease at its vulnerable neurological points.

With what started off as two friends teaming up to combat a disease has forged into a world wide program that is currently in 871 locations with over 43,000 lacing up the gloves at these locations to fight and defeat the neurological disease.

The program finally launched in the Mahoning Valley within the past year with the help of the very vibrant  71-year-old Paula Caldwell, a former professor at Mount Union who was diagnosed in 2005 when her husband noticed something was off with her arm.

"My husband noticed my arm was just hanging there like it was in a sling but I would say nothing was wrong and always had an excuse," said Caldwell.

After being in denial for about a year and realizing while she was walking across the campus at Mount Union she couldn't pick up her foot she finally went to a doctor who started off by first ruling out MS with an MRI.

After having issues with doctors here in the Mahoning Valley, Caldwell went to the Cleveland Clinic where she met up with Dr. Benjamin Walter who finally gave her the diagnosis.

Though Caldwell received some bad news, she was ready to fight as it was something she'd already done as a breast cancer survivor.

Flash forward to 2014 when Caldwell was turned onto the Rock Steady Boxing program by a friend and started traveling to Canton three days a week to participate in the program and immediately fell in love.

In 2017 Caldwell traveled to Indianapolis to get certified herself and then started to reach out locally to fitness center in hopes to bring the program to the Youngstown area.

"I reached out to VSN just taking a chance and Tim and Doug were all over it and have embraced it," said Caldwell of partners Tim Merlin and Doug Stein putting the program in at VSN Fitness Center in Boardman.

"I'm all in," said Merlin who along with Stein and Caldwell launched the program at VSN on March 4th.  "After having a guy tell me this changed his life and he could never pick up his grand child before he started this program now whatever they need I don't ask I just get it".

With the program in full force, Caldwell has seen the numbers of participants at VSN go up and has made lifetime friends.

"We are in this together with a common physical and mental bond," said Caldwell.  "We care for each other".

The participants and ownership of VSN aren't the only ones who are all in and helping make this program a success.

Former Cardinal Mooney and University of Kentucky football standout Braylon Heard got his certification this past February to teach the class in Tennessee along with Shannon Cutrer.

"I enjoy it," said Heard with a smile.  "After meeting Paula it's hard not to want to do this and put in the work and have all the fun that we have".

Those participating in the Rock Steady Program are under a release from a doctor followed by coming in to watch the first time then doing a 30-minute assessment.

"This program is very demanding so those who participate just don't come in and practice with us right off the bat," said Merlin.

It's people like Caldwell and the team at VSN who helps run our local Rock Steady Boxing class that makes you realize that maybe boxing isn't the loneliest sport in world.

"You don't have to fight Parkinson's alone," stated Caldwell.  "We support and will always support each other".