Pittsburgh is turning into the Mecca of Boxing. On April 2, a standing room only crowd packed Saddle Ridge in Station Square for The Pittsburgh Golden Gloves Championships, a show that brings a genuine who’s who of past and present stars.
The phenomenon that is Super Heavyweight Fred Latham, from Clairton Boxing Club, grew with a series of wins against some of the biggest names in the state. Latham’s goal was to win a state championship and turn pro in the fall. But things rarely turn out as planned in boxing.
This year’s Apollo, and boxing new Sun God is Ed Latimore, of Stay off the Streets Boxing Gym. Latimore, a 230-pounder, brought the fans from the edge of their seat to cheering on their feet with his explosive power. Latimore dethroned Latham, the defending champion, with a vicious series of punches and scored a 2nd round TKO.
Latimore has always been an explosive puncher who lacked stamina. Determined to restore his tarnished reputation, Latimore this past off season trained harder than ever before and joined forces with “The Trainer of Champions” Tommy Yankello. Once the Yankello’s opened the door, Latimore bolted through it.
With his new trainer watching intently, and scrutinizing his every move. Latimore was able to pound Latham into submission.
“I came tonight to see Fred Latham,” said model and actress Ashley Mittenzwey.
“I’m still in shock that someone could beat him. I never seen him lose before.”
A lot of kids say they want to box when they grow up, but Scott Bradley, of Carrick Boxing Club, did more than dream. He planned for it. That’s why Bradley seems unfazed about being named the Tournament’s Most Outstanding Boxer.
The Steel City’s version of Hercules—Carrick’s very own Warrior God, Bradley—conquered those monsters of doubt and uncertainty, being voiced by those who believed he wouldn’t even make it through the early preliminary rounds—and ascended to his rightful place as the toughest 165-pounder in southwestern Pennsylvania.
And just like the Hercules of Myth, slaying nine-headed serpents, Bradley earned his place among the gods, easily defeating defending State Champion Vinnie Macellaro and out-pointing hard hitter Larry Blakey, of 3rd Ave. WPAL to win the title.
To retrace Bradley’s rapid steps, go all the way back to the beginning. His success comes from his heart and head.
“Scott Bradley earned the Most Outstanding Boxer Trophy, because he beat two of my fighters,” said Jimmy “Mad Dog” Cvetic, executive director and founder of the Western Pennsylvania Police Athletic League. “We are looking forward to testing our abilities against Philadelphia. Everybody needs to come see Amonte Eberhardt. He is a special fighter.”
Other winners: John Himes, 201-pound division, from Beaver County Boxing Club, out pointed Sean Conway of South Park Boxing Club. Isaiah Guy, 75-pound Junior/Bantam division from Steel Valley, out-pointed Josh Lyle of Steel City. Anthony Maggio, 145-pound Cadet division from Exercise Warehouse, beat Spencer Forsythe of Helman’s Boxing Club. John Thomas, 132-pound Sub Novice division from Uniontown Boxing Club, won a close decision over Glen Mitchell of Team Impact. Robert Osterreider, 152-Sub Novice division from Butler Cubs, scored a 3rd-round TKO over Jaime Dansby of 3rd Ave. WPAL. Matt Conway, 125-Cadet division from South Park Boxing Club, upset Johnny Spell of North Side Fitness WPAL. Jarred Hackney, -201-Sub Novice division from Uniontown Boxing Club, dominated Matt Bartosiewicz of Steel City and Dustin Rosinoff, of Flat Back Gym, knocked out Luke Warm of Canvas Back Boxing Club. Francesco Wilkerson, 132-pound, and Amonte Eberhardt, 141-pound, both of 3rd Ave WPAL, advance to the state finals by being awarded walkover victories.
“I rather box than watch boxing,” said two-time Pittsburgh Golden Glove champion Amonte Eberhardt. “I was supposed to fight tonight, but my opponent decided not to show up. I have a hard time getting anyone to fight me. I want everyone to remember my name because they are going to see me on ESPN in two or three years.”
Philadelphia is favored to win every state championship bout over Pittsburgh.
The odds are probably more lopsided than the talent differential between the two cities.
But, it will take long odds to get anyone to bet against Scott Bradley these days.