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SPORTS SCENE: Truro man helping kids through boxing club

Beyond Boxing Fitness Society members, from left, coach Ted Ash, Dylan Gilchrist, Spencer McGee, J.T. Thomson and Keandrie Paris.
Beyond Boxing Fitness Society members, from left, coach Ted Ash, Dylan Gilchrist, Spencer McGee, J.T. Thomson and Keandrie Paris. - Lyle Carter

Ted Ash is enthusiastic when talking about Beyond Boxing Fitness Society.

The manager and head coach of the new boxing club located on the Esplanade, appears to be living a dream.

“Boxing has always been a real passion of mine,” Ash, 47, said. “I boxed off and on from the time I was 11 years of age. I realized these past few years that I feel the best when I’m helping people. This is part of what got me thinking about opening a boxing club.”

Employed in sales with A.L.P.A. Equipment, Ash said the boxing club opened in September.

“We had 25 boxers sign up; 23 chose to come back the second month. Since then, we’ve had 10 more boxers sign up. We’re very pleased.”

The young club held its first card recently at the Best Western Glengarry.

“Four of our boxers showcased their talent, we had three wins. It was huge for our overall moral, just about every member of the club was there cheering on teammates. It was an incredible feeling, these young boxers did this on their own. I was ecstatic.”

The facility on the Esplanade is neatly laid out – it has a weigh-in area, cardiac room, weight room, an area for shadow boxing, speed bags, a main gymnasium, changing room, a shower room and washrooms.

Ted’s wife Stacey, his son Ethan, Jeremy Valentine, Doug Maynard and Aidan Callahan all play important roles in running the gym.

J.T. Thomson, who won his recent bout at the Glengarry, described what it’s like to step in the ring.

“All your focus is on the other guy,” Thomson, 17, of Bible Hill, a Grade 12 student at CEC, said. “I try to listen to my coaches’ instructions. A bout is a psychological game, you feel the nerves,

there may be some butterflies in your stomach, but they eventually go away. The crowd gets excited and a boxer is excited to show the training time he has put in.”

Thomson, involved for several years in dairy and woodworking projects with 4-H, is looking forward to another bout in the new year.

Keandrie Paris, meanwhile, is just getting started.

“This is my first boxing club experience,” Paris, 12, of Truro, said. “I’m learning lots of techniques; boxing is a lot of fun.”

Spencer McGee is also trying the sport for the first time.

“It’s motivational,” McGee, 10, of Crowes Mills Road, said. “Boxing helps me in organizing myself for school better. I’ve been doing some sparring, I’m looking forward to the day I actually have a bout.”

Dylan Gilchrist, of Onslow Mountain, was likewise enthused about getting in the ring with an opponent.

Coach Ash said the club could use additional volunteers and he would welcome any positive ideas. Ash can be reached at 902 324-3673.

* * * *

Calem McAndrew and Noah Harrison fired two goals apiece Saturday night as Fundy Thunder defeated Cabot Highlanders (Port Hawkesbury) 8-3 at Colchester Legion Stadium.

The win improved the local team’s Nova Scotia Minor Midget AAA Hockey League record

to 7-6, good for 6th place among eight teams.

“Our team battled back after trailing early in the game,” Harrison, 17, of Springhill, said. “Our guys kept working together, we kept putting shots on goal, we stayed with it to earn the win.

This is a real tight league, every game means something, there’s not much difference between any team.”

Harrison, a centre and the Fundy captain, is a product of the Cumberland County Minor Hockey Association. He’s recorded 11 goals and eight assists in 13 games.

McAndrew, with 10 points in 13 games, also commented on the league.

“As a development league, each team carries four 16-year-olds,” McAndrew, 16, of Brentwood, said. “Most of the players are only 15, it’s a skilled type of hockey, very close to major midget. I was really happy when I heard this team was coming to Truro this year.”

McAndrew, a big booster of hockey, has played since age three.

“It’s our national sport, so many Canadian friendships are made through hockey. I’m always trying to teach people about hockey, I have a friend, an exchange student from Vietnam, he’s been taking quite an interest in hockey.”

Nearing the season’s halfway mark, Fundy Thunder recently had Genrus United (putting your health first) become the team’s major sponsor.

Lyle Carter’s sports column appears weekly in the Truro News. If you have a story idea, contact him at 902 673-2857.

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