In just over two short weeks, the Williams Lake Boxing Club will play host to its first fight night in the lakecity in nine years.
In preparation, lakecity pugilists have been pounding the pavement training for the June 2 show, billed as Teofista Boxing’s Unfinished Business.
Two of the club’s fighters, Harley Mulvahill and Arthur McLellan, recently travelled to Calgary, Alta. to fight at the Deerfoot Inn and Casino for a pair of tuneup fights, while club members also converged at the local gym May 13 for an open house and open sparring session.
Arthur and Mulvahill will join other Williams Lake boxers Stuart McLellan, Ron Elliot, Joey Helminger, Duncan McLellan and Kamloops’ Ken Huber, formerly of 100 Mile House, on the card for a full evening of boxing at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex. The show is slated to get underway at 7:30 p.m.
Mulvahill, at 33 years old with 36 amateur fights under his belt, decided what better time than fighting in your own hometown than to make your professional debut.
“It just kind of happened a few months ago when we were sitting around jawing about putting on fights here,” Mulvahill said. “I just thought, ‘might as well. Let’s put on a good show for the fans.’ I’m 33 now, and getting near the end of my rope, so why not?”
Mulvahill is coming off back-to-back recent wins — one in Quesnel the first week in April, and another April 28 in Calgary over Karn Mann of Edmonton, Alta.
“It went alright. I wanted to box more, but he wanted to tie up a lot so it kind of became a bit of a brawl,” Mulvahill said. “He was a bit unorthodox and was switching from lefty to righty a little bit.”
Of his training and the upcoming show in Williams Lake, Mulvahill said he’s pumped.
“I’m psyched now. It’s crunch time.”
Mulvahill will be taking on Dia Grant of Kelowna on the June 2 card in a four-round, 154-pound contest.
“I’m working out every day, and putting in a lot of work for sure,” he said. “I’m going to be in town now — I live out in Riske Creek — up until the final build up training here at the gym, getting that team mentality and working out with everybody here feels better.”
Arthur, meanwhile, who will fight in one of the featured amateur bouts of the evening, also picked up some valuable experience in Calgary in a decision loss.
“I went three rounds, and felt way more comfortable and relaxed in the ring,” Arthur said of just his second amateur fight. “It was a hostile crowd — the crowd was against me because my opponent (Mike Parker) was from there. I had a tough first round, the second was close, then I tried out working him in the third but it was back and forth and we both traded some hard punches.
“I’m just learning from all the mistakes and getting ready for Williams Lake.”
Arthur’s older brother Stuart, 31, who turned pro in 2007 and has a 23-win, two-loss and three-draw record, will main event the evening in one of three professional bouts on the card when he takes on Mexican fighter Isidro Toala in a rematch from last summer. That fight ended in a no contest after McLellan was hit with an errant headbutt from Toala — hence the ‘Unfinished Business’ tagline for the event.
“We were having a good brawl before that [the headbutt], so I’m looking forward to getting back in there with him,” Stuart said.
Adding to the excitement, the Canadian National Boxing Authority has announced a new title — the Canadian Mexican Title — will be up for grabs in the fight.
“It’s going to be good,” he said. “He comes to fight, and I’m prepared. I’ve had a good camp and been working hard with Ken Huber and all the guys at the gym here.”
Stuart added he’d like to thank the community for being so supportive of the event.
“We’ve had a lot of support from the community which means a lot because that wasn’t always the case,” he said.
“It’s nice to know people understand more about what we do here at the gym, and it’s cool there’s hype for this event,” Mulvahill added.
Unfinished Business will feature six amateur fights, plus two pro bouts — Stuart and Huber’s.
“Everyone’s looking forward to it,” Stuart said. “We haven’t had this many fights here in a long time, our club is the biggest it’s been in a while and I think we’ve helped out a lot of the young kids in town who come down here and we help keep them out of trouble.”
Tickets for the show are available at Advance Cut Barbershop and Hair Salon, CJ’s Southwestern Grill, Fit City Athletica, E.B. Horsman and Son and at the Williams Lake Boxing Gym, plus in Quesnel at the Two Rivers Boxing Club and Circle ‘S’ Western Wear, and in 100 Mile House at Focused Fitness.