Saginaw's Jose Bernal, Ernesto Garza advance
to quarterfinals of National Golden Gloves
by Steve Kaminski | The Grand Rapids Press
Thursday May 08, 2008, 3:45 AM
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GRAND RAPIDS -- The bout was over, but trainer Juan Garcia continued to give his boxer
advice after they returned to the dressing room Wednesday night at the DeVos Place.
"He came to break you down," Garcia told his welterweight, Jose Bernal of Saginaw. "But
you broke him down." Bernal and Michigan Golden Gloves teammate Ernesto Garza, also of
Saginaw, both won second-round bouts Wednesday night in similar fashion -- by pounding
their opponents into submission. Their victories have advanced them to tonight's 2008
Golden Gloves National Tournament of Champions quarterfinals. Bernal, 16, overpowered
Jherritt Stansberry of St. Louis. He forced a standing eight count at the close of the first
round. Saginaw's Jose Bernal gets his hands taped by Juan Garcia before his fight
Wednesday night. Bernal then attacked Stansberry with a barrage of punches in the
opening seconds of the second round, dropping Stansberry to his knee. Stansberry took
another count and continued, only to receive more punishment before the referee stopped
the fight. "I guess I was just trying to feel him out, and I threw back what he threw at me,"
Bernal said. "Whenever I saw an opening, I threw at him. "I knew I had to go hard (at the
start of the second round). He was trying to slow me down and hold me. When someone
does that, they are trying to catch their breath. That's what he was trying to do." It was
Bernal's second victory in as many nights. He won a split decision over Colorado-New
Mexico's Arturo Crespin on Tuesday. Garcia said plenty of work still needs to be done.
"I see him hit too much with the right hand," Garcia said. "I want to see him throw more left
hooks to the body. The other side is the weak side on the opponent. "Actually, he still hasn't
found himself. He is just starting to find himself now. He is only 16." Saginaw's Ernesto
Garza, right, connects to the face of Iowa's Zach Knox, ending their bantamweight fight.
Garza, 19, needed just 29 seconds to finish off Iowa's Zach Knox. Garza knocked Knox to
the mat with a straight left, and while he was able to beat the count, his corner stopped the
fight. "I was just waiting for the right punch, I was taking my time, I was relaxed," said Garza,
a bantamweight. "The opportunity came, and I took it. I was surprised they stopped it.
"I talked with my father and the head coach, and yes, I need the workout, but they said if
you can stop it early, then go for it. "Right now, the only thing that goes through my mind is
the belt around my waist that has the medal in the middle. That's what keeps me determined
and focused." Bernal will fight Sammy Vasquez of Pennsylvania tonight, while Garza will
take on Darris Smith of Chicago.