Moreu may have to remain amateur a little bit longer - Albuquerque Journal

Moreu may have to remain amateur a little bit longer

Albuquerque’s Sharahya Moreu has her hands raised in victory after a win over Carson Crawford at the USA Boxing nationals in Shreveport, Louisiana on Dec. 10. (Courtesy of USA Boxing)

Copyright © 2021 Albuquerque Journal

For Albuquerque amateur boxer Sharahya Moreu, 2022 was to be the year she turned pro. That still could happen.

Moreu’s recent silver-medal performance at the 2021 USA Boxing nationals, however, has opened doors in the amateur ranks that must be explored.

Yoruba Moreu, his daughter’s coach, said she’ll report to the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs on Jan. 17. There, she’ll compete for a spot on the U.S. team for the women’s world championships, scheduled for May in Istanbul.

Sharahya Moreu’s semifinal victory on Sept. 10 over Carson Crawford at nationals in Shreveport, Louisiana elevated Moreu to national-team status and punched her ticket to Colorado Springs, where she’ll compete with Jajaira Gonzalez for the world championships berth at 139 pounds.

Gonzalez defeated Moreu by unanimous decision in the championship bout at nationals, and the California boxer was chosen as the Elite Female Division Boxer of the Tournament. Yoruba Moreu does not dispute the outcome of the bout.

But he said her daughter isn’t about to concede the world championships spot.

“Sharahya was the only woman in the tournament at nationals to fight four days in a row,” he said. Having dropped to 139 pounds after fighting for more than a year at 152, Moreu had to maintain the lower weight throughout the competition.

“By Saturday (in the title fight), she looked drained,” he said.

No matter how the competition for the world championships turns out, making the U.S. national team is likely to mean international competition and, perhaps, international travel.

“They’re gonna have (the national team members) participate in an international camp where they’ll bring, like, Great Britain, Ireland, a bunch of other countries and have unofficial bouts,” Yoruba Moreu said. “They’re not real bouts, but they’re gonna score them to see how they do.”

As for the world championships, there could be a pot of gold waiting in Istanbul.

At the men’s world championships in Belgrade, Serbia in October, IBA – the recently renamed and reconfigured world amateur boxing association – awarded $100,000 to gold medalists, $50,000 to silver medalists and $25,000 to bronze medalists. The U.S. won two golds and two silvers.

No announcement has been made regarding prize money for women’s world championships.

TOP RANK’S LIST: On the occasion of legendary boxing promoter Bob Arum’s 90th birthday (Dec. 8), Top Rank, Inc. – the firm he founded in 1966 – published a location-by-location, headline fighter-by-headline fighter list of the 2,119 boxing cards the company had staged as of that date.

New Mexico and its native son, Johnny Tapia, figured prominently.

Tapia, a five-time world champion from Albuquerque who died in 2012, appeared on 36 Top Rank cards. Only Miguel Cotto (41), Michael Carbajal (38), Oscar De La Hoya (37) and Donald Curry (37) appeared more often.

Thanks to Tapia (10 TR fights in New Mexico) and fellow New Mexico world champion Danny Romero (four in New Mexico, 12 overall), but also to Top Rank Vice President Bruce Trampler’s fondness for the state, TR has staged 24 events in New Mexico.

Only Nevada, New Jersey, New York, California, Texas, Arizona, Illinois, Pennsylvania and Florida have had more.

MMA ROUNDUP: The past two weeks have been good ones for New Mexico MMA fighters.

Jackson-Wink has gone 7-0-1 the past two weekends. Professionals Ryan Hall, Don’Tale Mayes, AJ Robb, Joshua Baker and Kenan Jackson and amateurs Jordan Burkholder and Jon Cunningham all won their fights.

Amanda Lovato, meanwhile, is on a roll. After losing her first seven MMA fights, the FIT-NHB fighter defeated Brandi Hancock by unanimous decision on Dec. 11 in Colorado Springs for her second win in a row.

Amateur fighter Sophia Smith, who trains at Jackson’s Acoma, defeated Halee Wemple on Saturday in Greeley, Colorado.

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