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Boxing squad has impressive depth in 2010

Photo by Brian Hansel Justin Isaacson, right, mixes it up in a 2009 card at the Wadena Armory. The Nevis heavyweight made it to the finals of the Upper Midwest Tournament last season.

Bob Tubandt is beginning to pay a price for the success of his boxing program.

The popular Wadena coach had 30 kids show up on the first night of practice for the 2010 season. He put all of them through the wringer and then two nights later waited to see which ones would show back for a second helping.

They all showed up.

Tubandt can only grin, shake his head and be grateful.

"I think they believe the program is a good program and they just want to be part of it," Tubandt said.

The Wadena Golden Gloves Boxing Club's first card is Saturday, Dec. 18, at the Wadena Armory.

Tubandt heads into the season with a mixture of talent. He has two Upper Midwest finalists in DeWayne Steward and Justin Isaacson. He also has four girls on the team led by Taylor Geiser.

Steward boxed at 178 last year but will be fighting at 165 this year. Tubandt has had Steward with him for 12 years and rates him as a smooth fighter with a lot of good boxing skills.

Isaacson will be leading Tubandt's stable of heavyweights. The big Nevis fighter is a strong puncher, according to Tubandt. He will be joined in the heavyweight class by Elliot Sandberg and Jose Perez. Sandberg took last year off from boxing. Perez, a 16-year-old prospect, has already impressed Tubandt in practice.

Geiser is a 132-pounder who is extremely strong and lining up fights for her has not been an easy task. Her reputation as a hard hitter is well known.

The New York Mills fighter will be joined by Kiri Ollila of Verndale. Ollila is a 142-pound prospect.

T.J. Steward is back to fight at 150. Steward has been with Tubandt for eight years. Also back is third-year 135-pounder Shane Motschenbacher of Wadena.

Tubandt has high hopes of putting Patchrick Szathmary under the Wadena banner again. The veteran fighter boxes at 180.

Some of Wadena's new prospects include Ottertail's Sean Dunblazier (180) and Staples' Sam Davidson (165) along with Kevin Horner (115) and John Johnson (145).

Fighting in the juniors will be Albert Boldt (106), Chris Steward (119) and Matt Umland (80).

Joining Wadena on Saturday's 7:30 p.m. card will be teams from Fergus Falls, Detroit Lakes, Cass Lake, St. Cloud and Brainerd.