A heavyweight bout Feb. 6 will headline the next Josh Hall-Victoria Savaliski Round One Promotions Dinner and Boxing Show at Michael's 8th Avenue in Glen Burnie.
Hall and Savaliski staged a successful debut at the plush Michael's catering hall Nov. 14, making a modest profit -- for the first time in several shows. Things had gone awry at La Fontaine Bleu in Glen Burnie, and the change to Michael's has sparked a new interest in pro boxing in the county.
For their first show of the new year, Hall and Savaliski have decided to feature a heavyweight bout as the main event. Nathaniel Fitch, a 240-pound fighter from Fort Bragg, N.C., is an All-Army champion and, according to Hall, "a really exciting fighter who packs a powerful punch."
Fitch, 8-1 as a pro, will be opposed by Jerry Jones of Hillcrest Heights, in Prince George's County. Jones is 7-2 and tips the
scales at 215 pounds.
"About a year ago, Jones fought (heavyweight contender) Ray Mercer on national TV," Hall said. "He (Jones) lost, but he made a pretty good showing."
Popular Baltimore welterweight Eddie Van Kirk (23-7-2) headlined the first card at Michael's and was slated for the main event again.
But Van Kirk, who fought a lackluster eight-round draw against Cleveland's Henry Hughes (12-3-1) in the inaugural card, has personal problems that have taken him away from the ring. His hopes of fighting West Virginia's Tommy Small for the newly-formed World Boxing Federation Welterweight crown in the near future have been nixed for now.
Hall also has arranged three fights involving local boxers.
Returning to Michael's will be super middleweight Boyar "Sugar Boy" Chew (1-1) of Annapolis and welterweight Mark Padelletti (3-2-1) of South Baltimore, who trains at the Harding/Lowry Gym in Pasadena.
Chew, a colorful character who joked after the last show that he was going to move to the Glen Burnie and Linthicum-Ferndale area to become a "hometown hero," won his first pro fight at Michael's. Sugar Boy took a split-decision over Laurel'sJoe Blyther, who was making his pro debut.
Chew will get the chance to avenge his professional debut loss by unanimous decision to Aaron Thompson of Mitchellville, Md. It was also Thompson's debut that night back in October at La Fontaine Bleu.
"I want another shot at Thompson now that I've got the first one," Chew said after tasting his first pro victory.
Padelletti, one of those "come right after you" kind of boxers, injured his right shoulder in the first round of his bout at Michael's, but showed his tenacity in scoring a four-roundsplit-decision over John Stewart (2-7) of D.C.
Like Chew, Padelletti also is getting an opportunity at revenge. The 140-pound Padelletti will duke it out with Steve Frederick (3-2-1) of Washington. The two fought to a draw when they last met, about six months ago.
Alsoon the card, two locally known fighters will be pitted against each other in a six-round light-heavyweight bout that could be one of the evening's most exciting.
Glen Burnie's Cliff "The Hammer" McPherson (1-4-1), a kickboxer with a national reputation, will strap on the leather against the relentless Cecil Sims of Baltimore. Sims (5-3-1) is a former cook at Dino's Restaurant in Glen Burnie.
"The Hammer"-- not to be confused with the Atlanta Falcons' best-known fan -- ismore of a free-puncher than rapper. McPherson, who usually draws 50-50 in cheers and boos because of his flashy style, has shown up in Indian headdress and war paint and deals in psychological warfare.
His opponent is a businesslike warrior who can punch -- and take a punch, something he can expect from the wildly whaling Hammer. This fight promises to be a crowd pleaser, going either the six-round distancewith a flurry of punches or ending in an early knockout.
For ticket information on the Feb. 6 show at Michael's, call 760-2699. Ring-side seats are expected to go fast.
Navy Ice Hockey Club coachJim Barry called the 24-Hour Sportsline (647-2499) early Sunday morning from Tucson, Ariz. to give us some good news: The Midshipmen posted an impressive 5-2 victory over the University of Arizona Saturday night.
Navy was invited by Arizona officials while playing in Tempe last February in the National Club Ice Hockey Tournament. They wereso impressed with Navy's style of play and class on and off the ice that the trip was set up for this weekend.
Friday night, the Mids dropped a 4-1 decision to the Wildcats, who broke open a close game in the final period. Navy, outshot 36-21, took Arizona into the last period tied 1-1, but a string of 21 consecutive minutes playing short-handed took its toll.
Determined to show that they could play a lot better, Barry's Mids (7-2) came out hungry Saturday night. With 6,000 Arizona fans watching, goalie Richie Doyle was sensational.
"Richie was the difference," Barry said. "We were out-shot, 44-22, but Richie stopped everything they threw in there. Richie was just wonderful."