EL CENTRO – Boxing is a sport of hard knocks, pride, and spirit. For El Centro’s Angel Muñoz, a seventh-grader at Wilson Junior High School, boxing is a passion and plays a vital role in his life.
Muñoz, 14, one of many students that train at El Centro’s Sparta Boxing Gym, will be Imperial Valley’s first male boxer to compete in the Junior Olympics in Dallas, Texas. For Muñoz, this is an opportunity to prove that even the smallest of places in the country, such as the Imperial Valley, can produce talent. He will be competing in the 145 pounds weight division and the 18 and under age bracket.
Muñoz’s accomplishments as a boxer include bringing home the gold medal at the US/Mexico Bi-Nationals, becoming the only male from the Imperial Valley to win a Ringside World Championship, a two-time Desert Showdown Champion, and winning the Diamond Tournament in Los Angeles.
In late May, Sparta Boxing Gym and Desert Wrestling Entertainment (DWE) held a pro wrestling lucha libre event in El Centro that served as a fundraiser to help send Muñoz to the Junior Olympics. The event was a success, not only for promoter Richard Ignacio and the wrestlers who participated, but more importantly, for Muñoz himself.
Muñoz’s journey in boxing began at age seven when he observed his father training his older brother Georgie at his homemade boxing gym. By seeing his brother get better, Muñoz decided to follow in his brother’s footsteps and pursue the physical sport himself.
Georgie, along with his sister, Julianne, were the biggest inspirations in Muñoz’s life as they became professional boxers. Growing up, his older siblings taught him everything about boxing and showed him the way to go in pursuit of the same goal.
The young boxer aspires to continue pursuing the dream of becoming a professional like his older brother and sister before him. If that does not pan out, Muñoz has other ideas. He’s already considered looking into a career in law enforcement.
The Junior Olympic nationals will be held in Dallas, Texas from June 26 to July 2. If you would like support Angel Muñoz, contact Jorge Muñoz, head coach and owner of Sparta Boxing Gym, at 442-231-9692.[envira-gallery id=”78594″]