Mitchell Causes “Mayhem” In His First Amateur Bout

By Carla Peay
Updated: March 7, 2007

Seth Mitchell defeats Collado Gray in Golden Gloves Semi-Final Bout. Photo courtesy John E. DeFreitas.

Seth Mitchell defeats Collado Gray in Golden Gloves Semi-Final Bout. Photo courtesy John E. DeFreitas.

LANDOVER, Md. — The setting was a small community center in Landover, Md., coincidentally, just a few miles up the road from where Washington D.C.’s biggest sports draw, the Washington Redskins, play football. It’s called the Sugar Ray Leonard Community Center, and has a mural of the former champion adorning one wall.

But on this unseasonably warm night in March, amateur boxing took center stage as local Golden Glove hopefuls from all across the state waited their turn to step into the ring.

A victory would be good for a spot in the Golden Glove Championship Finals to be held at the end of the month. A defeat, and it’s back to the gym, hoping for another shot down the road.

Seth Mitchell was one of those fighters, seated nervously at ringside, watching as all the other weight classes boxed ahead of him. A super heavyweight, weighing in at just over 250 pounds, Mitchell would be the last boxer on the card.

As bout after bout went on, Mitchell removed the IPOD from his ears, and continued to watch the action as his trainer taped up his hands. He was trying, he would admit later, to make himself relax.

As the fighters in the ring increased in weight class, the punches landed with more increasing force, and the hundred or so spectators that crowded the hot gymnasium got louder.

Finally it was time for Mitchell to get up from his spectators seat at ringside and change from his street clothes into his boxing trunks and top. Nearly two hours after he arrived at the gym, it was his turn to step into the ring.

A frenzied noise now filled the gym, as the anxious spectators waited for the final bout of the evening between the super heavyweights, Mitchell and his opponent, Collado Gray, the glamour match of the evening.

It was over in the first ten seconds. For Collado Gray, that is.

Mitchell tagged Gray with a punch that sent Gray straight to the canvas a mere ten seconds into the bout. While Gray recovered, came to his feet and continued, Mitchell momentarily slipped and lost his footing. He regained it quickly, and the contest resumed, but it didn’t last long.

Mitchell landed another punch that sent Gray back to the canvas, all Mitchell would need to score a decisive victory as the official stopped the fight with an official call of Referee Stops Contest (RFC). The length of the fight? One minute and 26 seconds.

“I feel good,” Mitchell said after the bout. “I was nervous before, and I was trying to concentrate on relaxing. But I’m very happy with the outcome,” Mitchell said.

One of Mitchell’s sparring partners, Terrance “Rawhide” Wood, wasn’t the least bit surprised by Mitchell’s easy victory.

“I think Seth is one of the most talented fighters to hit the scene in a long time. In the few months that I’ve been working with him, I’m amazed at his strength and his speed. But he also has the proper mindset. He’s educating himself in the proper techniques to become a champion,” Wood said.

Wood is a former Golden Gloves boxing champion in 1987, and was the Amateur Boxing Federation Champion in 1988. As a professional in the light heavyweight, then heavyweight division, Wood had a record of 15-4 in his pro career. Retired from the sport for ten years now, Wood is planning a comeback.

“I love the sport. I like helping out the kids in the community. Besides, there’s no one out there right now who is worthy of being the heavyweight champions of the world,” Wood said.

Except perhaps his sparring partner.

“Even when Seth blew his knee out and had to give up football, he never gave up. It shows his character. He brings that character into the ring. I think if he stays focused, he will become heavyweight champion of the world one day,” Wood said.

Wood smiled before adding, “Unless of course, I am.”

Mitchell’s victory in his this semi-final bout places him in the Golden Gloves Championship Finals, which will be held on March 30 in Waldorf, Md.

Note: This is Peay’s final article on boxer Seth Mitchell; she now serves as his publicist.