Syracuse competes with top college boxers vying for national titles
Nation's top college boxers compete at SU
A weekend packed with dozens of bouts featuring the nation’s top college boxers resulted in one Syracuse University fighter among the champions and another as runner-up.
SU graduate student Jeff Frelier won the U.S. Intercollegiate Boxing Association’s title match in the 178-pound novice division by defeating Brandon Peck of Iowa State on Sunday in Goldstein Auditorium. Fellow SU boxer Otito Darl-Uzu fought his way to a second-place finish in the 189-pound beginner division.
Members of SU’s Boxing Club competed with men and women boxers from colleges across the nation on Friday and Saturday in the Women’s Building gym prior to Sunday’s title bouts.
During Friday’s opening round matches featuring SU boxers, attendees in the crowd were on the edge of their seats as SU boxers Kristine Do and Marcus Ho both showcased high energy and persistence in hard-fought, split-decision losses to Hanna Ek of Georgia Tech and Mateo Bautista of Illinois, respectively. At some point during the opening battles, there was damage done to the ring that forced a delay in the action, causing audience members to become a bit restless.
One official eased the crowd by joking that they shouldn’t “blame the fat ref.” He had officiated the previous two bouts before the delay.
SU’s Minhein Htet took on Georgia Tech’s Andrew Le. Htet came out strong in the early seconds of the first round, checking Le’s jab frequently, but as the match progressed Le appeared to overwhelm Htet with his precise movements. The end came just halfway through the third round via referee stoppage, with Le prevailing.
Syracuse went 1-6 in its next seven matches. Illinois’ Simeon Trendafilov, Jesus Moreno and Kevin Grygo bested Cuse’s Irabor Oshotse, Michael Gaines and Brett Nesfeder. Takahiro Kawasaki of Maryland got the win against SU’s Georgios Michopoulos, while Clayton Smith, from Texas A&M, beat Syracuse’s Jose Mendoza. Spencer Jensen of Iowa State beat Marty Hirschberg from Syracuse.
The lone win came Friday when Darl-Uzu beat Iowa State’s Kevin Schlotfeldt to advance to the next round of the tournament. Darl-Uzu would get his hand raised one more time, getting by Nicholas Bobber of Illinois to advance to Sunday’s final in the Goldstein Auditorium.
Darl-Uzu stepped into the ring Sunday opposite Virginia Military Institute’s Andrew Fodness. Fodness, who had a first-round bye, came out on top.
But SU would find itself among Sunday’s champions as Frelier entered his championship match with a first-round bye of his own and defeated Iowa State’s Peck to claim the 178-pound novice division title.