An 18-year-old boxing phenom from Redmond has a new title: Western Regional Golden Gloves Champion.
Kevin Ochoa-Limbeck, who Central Oregon Daily News introduced you to two weeks ago, was competing in Las Vegas over the weekend.
Kevin shared with us a photo of himself in the ring, with his hand being held up by the referee. Ochoa is pumping his fist while his opponent is on one knee, looking dejected.
Behind Kevin is his coach, with fists up in the air in victory.
“This is this has to be my favorite photo. You know, you got coach in the background,” said Kevin. “His hands are up. More excited than I am, it looks like.
“You got me looking up, thanking God for the opportunity. I’m so thankful to have everyone been there,” Kevin added.
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“He was on. Just speed in and out, side to side and the kid couldn’t hit him. Kevin, he tore him up,” said Richard Miller, who has coached Kevin for 12 years.
Kevin won back-to-back fights in Las Vegas and punched his ticket to the National Golden Gloves tournament in Philadelphia.
“I’m looking forward to the new experience. I’ve never been to Philadelphia. I’ve never fought the National Golden Gloves. I’ll probably most likely be the youngest person there fighting at the tournament, so it will be an honor,” said Kevin.
There’s some symmetry building. When Kevin was 13, he won the National Silver Gloves in their 50th year of existence. As fate would have it, this year happens to be the Golden Gloves 100-year anniversary. So, it just might be destiny at this point.
Also, there’s an added incentive to do well at nationals as the top two finishers automatically qualify for the Olympic trials, which has been a lifelong dream of Kevin’s.