Back in the ring | NevadaAppeal.com

Back in the ring

Steve Puterski
sputerski@lahontanvalleynews.com
The annual Night of Boxing returns to the Elmo Derrico Gym today at 5 p.m.
LVN File photo |

Ringside seating

VIP tables for the Night of Fights are still available and can be purchased for $250 for six people.

Purchase of table includes tri-tip dinner, desert and floor seating.

For information about a table contact Kelly Workman at 775-224-0960 or Robb Goings at 775-691-8009.

The fights

Undercard

Trey McGowen vs. Carson Rigney

Orion Wolf vs. Billy Coleman

Brianne Richard vs. Kaydi Wright

Russell Peterson vs. Ryan Merkley

Beau Arrive vs. Eddie Marquez

Anthony Sabation vs. Davis Koenig

Kobe Abe vs. Sam Goings

True Handley vs. Trae Workman

Taylor Bright vs. Jenny Rios

Semi Main Events

Ricky Rogers vs. Ryan Weirsma

Haley Sanches vs. Er Paranuk

Bryson Abe vs. Alfonso Negrete

Main Events

Emily Coleman vs. Rileigh Ricken vs. Katelynn White

Robert White vs. Marcos Ledezma

Despite the absence of a long-time coach, the action-packed tradition rages on.

The Night of Boxing hits the canvas today at the Elmo Derrico Gym at Churchill County High School. Doors open at 5 p.m. and the boxing matches begin at 6 p.m.

The event is the Fallon wrestling program’s only fundraiser of the year, and the money assists in travel costs, tournament fees, food, warm-up gear and more.

This year’s main event features two bout and five fighters. The girls bout is a three-way fight featuring Rileigh Ricken, Emily Coleman and Katelynn White.

Each boxer will fight the other in two one-minute rounds in a round-robin format.

The boys’ card will pit Robert White against Marcos Ledezma in the traditional three one-minute rounds.

“It’s basically the same as every other year,” Fallon booster Robb Goings said. “All the money goes to giving the kids gear … to tournaments.”

This year’s run-up to the event, though, has been more challenging than in years past due to the removal of former head coach and boxing coordinator Mitch Overlie.

In his stead, though, are Dan Shaw, Ryan McCormick, Trevor de Braga and Dave Garcia. Shaw, de Braga and McCormick assisted Overlie full time with the high school wrestling program last season, while Garcia was part time.

In addition to the four boxing coaches, the Fallon Takedown Booster Club also helps with the logistics of the event and securing the ring, gloves and other necessities.

Goings, one of the board members, and Kelly Workman, president of the club, both said this year’s event has been more difficult than in years past. First, the uncertainty of who will be the next coach and the rapport and proximity Overlie had with the students are tough to replace.

“With Mitch, he was at the school and sees the kids every day,” Goings said. “This year, we are dependent on the kids … and that’s been the hard part. It’s been a challenge.”

The fighters, meanwhile, are students who workout for weeks in advance in preparation for the event. This year the field has whittled down from about 50 to 29.

Perhaps the most difficult aspect of the event, according to Goings, is pairing up the fighters. The coaches avoid obvious mismatches and uses the students’ skills displayed in practice as a benchmark.

From there, the bouts are shaped, even with odd amount of fighters.

Community support for the fights, though, is through the roof. Last year the event sold out, and Goings and Workman hope the 2014 version does too.

Due to the odd placement of Memorial Day weekend, however, response to the event started slow but is picking up.

At Tuesday’s fighter auction, several VIP tables were sold and word is spreading quickly about the festive tradition.

“We are excited about the turnout,” Workman said. “We excited for whoever they (CCHS administrators) chose for a coach know that we are there to support them. This is our one and only fundraiser and it really helps the kids to get mat time.”

Another obstacle for organizers, though, is the fundraising. The auction brings in several thousands of dollars as businesses or individuals can bid on fighters and have their company or name displayed at the fights.

Due to the recession, and the slow pace of recovery, the auction has taken a hit to what it once was. Nevertheless, the event raises a healthy portion of funds and is the alternate to car washes and door-to-door sales, which many CCHS athletic programs rely on for funds.

Goings, who operates his own business, said it is tough for business owners to donate to every program, not that wouldn’t like too.

“We are trying to give them something in return,” Goings said of the donors. “Sometimes the businesses get overwhelmed. We try to give them something to watch beyond what is normal.”