Weight Gain Helps Reilly Advance to Boxing Final

Associated Press

It is upward and onward for 19-year-old Pepe Reilly.

In 1988, Reilly, of Glendale, was eliminated in the 106-pound class early in the U. S. Amateur Boxing Championships.

Last year, at 119 pounds, Reilly lost his first bout in the tournament.

Thursday night, the 5-foot-10 Reilly gained the 147-pound final with a 4-1 decision over Jaime Lerna of Flint, Mich.


“This is where he belongs,” Reilly’s father and coach, Fred, said.

In his semifinal bout at the U. S. Olympic Training Center, Reilly used a sharp jab and crisp one-two’s to beat the aggressive Lerma.

Reilly noted that the reason he fought at 119, even though his natural weight was some 10 pounds heavier, was because friends Oscar de la Hoya and Shane Mosley were boxing at 125 and 132 pounds, respectively.

Now Reilly, who started weight training in May to increase his power, has vaulted over his two friends in weight.

In a 201-pound bout, John Bray of Van Nuys stopped Bobby Harris of Worcester, Mass.,