On Friday and Saturday night the Price Elks boxing club showed up in force at the U.S.A. Utah state boxing championships in Salt Lake city. By evening's end Jeffery Salas would become the 132 pound Utah State Champion.
First to compete Friday night was 9-year-old Chad Collard who faced Johnny Gomez of the Salt Lake City Center Boxing Club. This was the fifth bout between the two and Collard came away with the victory by out boxing Gomez.
Next Cezly Collard took to the ring to fight Pano Tia in the 75 pound weight class. Cezly lost the bout but according to Elks boxing coach Mitchell Hadden many at ringside felt that Collard deserved to win the decision.
Clay Cloward also boxed Friday night and out boxed Mike Montoya of the Salt Lake City Center Boxing Club with power punches to take the win giving the Elks their second victory.
Jeffery Salas participated in the evenings main event which was an open class bout vs. Mauricio Rascon of the Flash Academy Boxing Club. Rascon was the reigning champ and favored in the bout. Nobody told Salas who proved to be to much for Rascon winning a unanimous decision. The bout qualified Salas for the Four Corners Regional Championships on March 9 and 10.
Salas has been boxing since age nine in Arizona. He moved to East Carbon at age 15 and began boxing with the Elks club. He trains between two to three hours per day year-round to further his dreams of one day becoming an Olympic boxer.
"These bouts are the precursors to the Olympics and if he keeps winning we could see him there in 2008," said Hadden.
On Saturday Rookie Bales fought Michael Montoya in the Elks first bout. According to Hadden, Bales fought valiantly but lost a decision to Montoya.
In the evenings main event Salas once again went up what was supposed to be a better boxer from Salt Lake. One hundred and twenty five pound champ Jose Haro is know in boxing circles as the city's best fighter and an exhibition between the two has been in the works for quite awhile. The bout did not disappoint with the champs slugging it out for four rounds. When the dust settled Salas came away with the victory and the title.
"Boxing is my life and I will fight in the Olympics someday," concluded the champ.