As Haverhill Downtown Boxing Club boxers won one and lost two Tuesday night at the Golden Gloves preliminaries in Lowell, everybody agreed that their performances in this year’s Novice group shows that the city has the potential to produce champions.
Thomas O’Connell won his middle weight bout, Josh Couture lost in a split decision bout as did Geraldo Torres.
O’Connell won his fight against Clarance Jones of Paladin Boxing from Fitchburg, a former USA Boxing New England champion. Jones lost last night in a fight that everyone agreed O’Connell controlled with movement and carefully laid on punches from bell to bell.
“I told Tom (O’Connell), ‘You became a fighter tonight,’” said co-owner and trainer Ray Hebert. Derek Couture is the other co-owner and trainer at the gym.
In his bout with Fitchburg’s Paladin, O’Connell’s opponent hardly touched him, Hebert said.
“He hardly got hit; he kept his eyes on the guy and dodged the other guy’s punches, then came back with quick, hard jabs and a few combinations. He went in one-two, one-two. He controlled the fight,” Hebert said.
O’Connell stayed upright and, “I did everything Ray and Derek taught me,” he said about how he won, again. This win gives him six wins, two losses and puts him two bouts away from the 10 he needs to move up to fight in the Open Class.
O’Connell now moves into the semi-finals in his weight category for the next round of fights. If he wins there, he will move on to the finals with a shot at the local championship.
Heavy weight, Josh Couture, lost on a split decision to Randy Philbrick from In the Ring Boxing and Fitness Club from Londonderry, N.H. They fought in the 201-lb. Weight group.