By Ted Waddell
MONTICELLO On Friday night, Monticello Gaming & Raceway teamed up with Uncle Sam’s Boxing Club of Troy to present All-Stars Amateur Boxing Night.
The event featured 15 bouts in an effort designed to bring the long-standing tradition of boxing back to the Catskills.
Uncle Sam’s Boxing Club was founded in 1975 and owner Bob Miller promoted the first 19 bouts of Mike Tyson’s professional career.
In addition, Miller runs the annual New York State Amateur Boxing Championships.
The card featured fighters from several upstate boxing clubs, including the International Boxing Academy of Monticello (IBAM), Orange County Boxing (OCB), Old School Boxing (OSB), Demerest Boxing of Kingston and clubs from New York City and the Albany/Troy region.
“Boxing has always been great for the kids, and the IBAM program gets a lot of troubled kids off the street,” Village of Monticello Mayor Gordon Jenkins said. “They can take out some of their aggression in the ring, and most guys who box are pretty much respected.”
Ray Sheenan boxed in 1950 and went on to win the New Jersey State Open Class Championship Lightweight Division, later fighting on the Queen of Bermuda cruise ship.
In March 2007, he founded IBAM, as “another alternative for kids other than the street or incarceration.
“We work with young kids,” he said.
Six IBAM fighters competed on Friday night’s card. They were: Caleb McCallion at 70 pounds, Jericho Mahe at 107 pounds, Victor Torrez at 147 pounds, Mark Jiminez at 150 pounds, Rashaad Mason at 152 pounds and Shawn Williams at 170 pounds.
Williams won his bout against Shane Dunham of Demerest Boxing. Williams also earned the trophy for best fight of the card.