A Wauseon resident has utilized his skills in the boxing ring to qualify for the upcoming National Junior Olympics.
Johnny Martinez, a 15-year-old sophomore at Wauseon High School, punched his ticket by taking first in the 119-pound weight class at the Great Lakes Regional Tournament in Toledo May 25-27.
The regional consisted of boxers from Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Kentucky.
At the regional, Martinez won by unanimous decision over Leonardo Cruz Torres and by a split decision over Lukas Moldenhauer, to finish first at 119 pounds.
He also won a state title in April, which earned him a berth to the regional. It was his fourth state championship. He is also a six-time golden gloves champion.
Martinez plays football and also wrestles at Wauseon. However, he considers boxing his main sport, training year-round for it. Boxing helps maintain his weight for wrestling, Martinez says.
The National Junior Olympics will be held at Madison Marriott West Hotel and Conference Center in Middleton, Wisc., June 23-29.