Fighters hit the floor hard

Bouts filled with standing eights

Posted: Sunday, November 12, 2006

Fighters hit the mat hard during Roughhouse Boxing at Marlintini's Friday. The night was filled with knockdowns and standing eight counts with boxers fighting because of peer pressure and "for world peace."

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Jesse "The Roofer" Solomon defeated Matt "The Goat" Coppick in a split decision during the exciting final match-up of the night. Solomon, who won the main event against Johnny Gallentes Jr. earlier in the evening, stayed tough through repeated breaks in the fighting and a solid body blow by Coppick that could've been heard at nearby Donna's Restaurant. Coppick delivered repeated steady blows in round one and threw quick powerful punches in round two. In round three the boxers broke repeatedly from the fight. The crowd booed when Solomon was declared the winner.

First-time fighter Jason McLenithan, 34, a sprinkler installer from Anchorage, beat Guy Marble, 28, a drywall installer in a working-class punchfest. Marble challenged McLenithan to three rounds while working on the Fred Meyer remodeling project.

"The drywaller guy challenged me and I said, 'Well I can't back down from a drywaller, so let's get it on.' It's a job site pride contest," McLenithan said.

McLenithan, who said he was an Army veteran, also thought it would be a good way to celebrate Veterans Day. At the bell, the boxers traded three blows simultaneously with McLenithan falling to his knees after the third exchange. McLenithan was issued a standing eight count, then hung on through the rest of round one. In round two, McLenithan knocked Marble to his knees. As he struggled to stand, the referee delivered another standing eight count. McLenithan continued to dominate, finishing Marble off in round three, with a final knock down right before the bell.

In a much anticipated match-up, PW Andresen, a Norwegian said he fought because of peer pressure, defeated Grant "Rocko Hollywood" Younce, who was fighting for rent money. Both fighters had been undefeated with 1-0 records. Andresen, a garbage man, knocked down Younce, a Costco employee, in the first and third rounds for the win. Andresen's strategy was to "use his reach and keep him from grabbing me". Andresen dodged punches well enough, but Younce managed to land some solid leather.

"I felt rocked," Andresen said.

Andresen's mother and 88-year-old grandmother watched ringside. Andresen said he was pleased with his family's support, especially since "they aren't really into this stuff."

Sitka's Coast Guard rescue swimmer, Matt Keiper, knocked out Mike "Nice Guy" Edenshaw forty-four seconds into round one.

"It was one shot, that's all I wrote. First time I ever got knocked out. It was like instant headache," Edenshaw said.

Keiper was stationed in Sitka eighteen months ago, and started training with former Roughhouse champion Victor Littlefield at the Sitka fight club.

"I was very disappointed in the fight because there were a lot of combinations that I wanted to throw. I probably won't fight again because I can't risk injury in my important role with work," Keiper said after his victory.

Al " Mean Machine" Valentine, 47, a Taku Smokeries seafood employee, defeated grocery store seafood employee Sonny J. Galletes, 46, in a bout pairing solid boxing veterans. Valentine, fighting in honor of his daughter Elizabeth, had bursts of energy that repeatedly knocked Galletes into the ropes. A heavy tag to the body brought Galletes to his knees at the end of round two. Valentine showed his opponent his right glove, coming in with a powerful left in round three.

"I didn't know anything about him, he's taller but lighter, so I came in a little bit lower and it worked for me," said Valentine.

First time boxer Nathaniel Wirkkula, who said he was fighting for world peace, did so by pummeling Allen "Squid" Pierce. The bout started with Wirkkula dropping to the mat in round one, but a relaxed Wirkkula out-boxed Pierce with multiple shots to the head. Eighteen seconds into the fight a TKO was handed down.

Kenneth "The Tlingit" Willard, 33, defeated Steven "TNT" Frank, 22, in a match that went the distance, tiring out both boxers by round three. Frank threw some fiery punches, but Willard was quicker on his feet.

Angela Day Nalan decisively defeated Ave "The Native Fox" Austin in an energetic bout. Austin battled back from the corner in round two, skirting along the ropes as she threw punches. But ultimately, Nalan dominated every round. Nalan was fighting one last time before attending beauty school.

The main event featured Jesse "The Roofer" Solomon of Anchorage scoring a TKO over Johnny Galletes Jr. Solomon knocked down Galletes for standing eight counts in the first and second rounds. Galletes looked like he wanted to go on, but his corner retired him by tossing in a towel towards the end of round two.

For more photos, see our slideshow: Roughhouse Boxing at Marlintini's

The next Roughhouse Friday Boxing is December 9th at Marlintini's Lounge.

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