2009-01-30 / Sports

Fighters Knockout the Competition At Golden Gloves

By Elio Velez

Two boxers didn't hesitate to make an impact last Wednesday night in the first event of the annual Daily News Golden Gloves at BB King Blues Club in Times Square.

Joseph Williams had to wait until the tenth and final bout of the opening night to showcase his boxing skills.

When the 20-year old fighter, who is competing for the first time in the Golden Gloves, finally entered the ring, Williams didn't take long to make an impact once the bell rang.

Williams, a super heavyweight weighting 215 pounds, knocked out Jason Vargas only eight seconds into the 201 + novice bout. He then went on to finish in dominating fashion, recording the second knockdown and eventually winning on a TKO at the time of 1:31 of the first round.

The 20-year old fighter, who is representing the Rockaway Ropes Boxing Club located at the Ocean Bay Community Center at 57-10 Beach Channel Drive, displayed good punching power and cut off the slower but three inches taller Vargas.

"I was waiting for him to throw something lazy. I was just working on my jab," Williams said.

"I saw how he started off real slow so I thought I pick it up on him and be the aggressor."

Williams is trying to follow in the winning footsteps of his cousin Brian Adams, who won the Gloves in 1993, 1995 and 1996.

To get to the championship, Williams says he wants to rely on his skills as a fighter, not just as a brawler to advance.

"It feels good. I didn't expect to get TKO, I don't expect to get that, I just aim to box. I want to show people I got talent except for going just for the hard knockout," Williams said.

The bourgeoning Rockaway Ropes Boxing Club is the offshoot of the former Irish Ropes Boxing Club, which was located in Arverne and closed in 2006.

Sean Monaghan used to train at the Irish Ropes and keeps the place where he learned to box close to home.

But these days, the 27-year old fighter is enjoying his first marriage to his longtime girlfriend Beverly last August, a new home in Long Beach, and working long hours in the cold as a bricklayer.

After taking off a year from boxing to attend to those new developments, Monaghan shook off the ring rust in exciting fashion. He was named the P.C. Richard and Son Boxer of the Night with a strong victory over Christopher Pignone in the 178 pound open class.

Monaghan displayed a powerful left jab and a three-punch combination flushed Pignone to the canvas for the first knockdown. The second knockdown, another powerful left jab, busted Pignone's nose and led to the doctor at ringside to call of the fight at the 1:57 mark of the second round.

"I know I hit hard, fight hard," Monaghan said. "I just wanted to finish him off and make a big impression from the start."

Monaghan is looking for redemption after losing in the Golden Gloves 178- pound novice final last year in a split decision to Joseph Smith Jr. If Monaghan reaches the finals, Smith Jr. might possibly be his opponent.

Despite the grueling hours of being a bricklayer and the travel, winning a title would be worth all the hard work he's put into the ring.

"I just go to get up and work hard, same thing with boxing. I'm not as fast as some of these guys," Monaghan said.

"Some of these guys got natural talent. I just got to go out there and fight."

A few local fighters, Shiloh Brown, Luis Torres, Darius Vinson, Kenyatta Greig-Harris, and Gary Styles will also compete in the tournament.

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