The Rex owner Joe Kurley opened his doors to the South Atlantic Association and USA Boxing to bring 11 amateur boxing bouts to Leonardtown Saturday afternoon.
The Knowledge Boxing Center won the most fights, with five on the night. Each winner took home a trophy, a belt with the KBC emblem, and a photo of Arthur ‘Buddy’ Harrison, Jr., owner and boxing coach for Old School Boxing in Fort Washington. Harrison passed away tragically in 2022, and the case surrounding his death has not yet been solved.
Knowledge Boxing coaches Daryl Hinmon and John Richardson were sanction holders and matchmakers for the evening.
Ringside physician Dr. John Wills, who was celebrating his birthday, ensured each fighter was healthy before and after each bout.
James Richardson was the weight master for the evening, while Tim Ryan was the chief of officials. Lakeisha Smith sang her rendition of the National Anthem, and Hall of Famer Henry ‘Discombobulating’ Jones was the ring announcer for the evening.
The ring card ladies were Lauren and Stephanie of Southern Maryland KBC ‘Sexies’.
Pennsylvania native DJ Keys entertained the crowd, playing a little bit of everything from Hip Hop, rock, and country to pop music.
Retired boxing champ DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley was in attendance and took photos and signed autographs with fans and boxers.
“I don’t remember ever having a world champion here in Southern Maryland,” Hinmon said via social media. “We want to thank him for coming down and showing us support along with our many sponsors. Thank you for your dedication and support to the sport of boxing.”
Leonardtown resident Kahleel Stone (10-3, 1 TKO) was the last fight of the evening. Stone, who had to wait for his time in the ring. Maintaining his mental edge and physical stamina wasn’t easy, but he said was worth it.
Stone took on Eddie Baah (Alexandria Boxing) in a 147-pound rematch of his very first fight. Stone paced himself in the first round and strategically landed punches in the second round.
Stone’s original opponent had to back out of the fight at the last minute, so Baah stepped up. With this change in plans, Stone had to lose weight quickly, losing eight pounds in one day.
“He stepped up at the last minute, which was commendable,” Stone said. “I wanted to convey that to him after the fight, but he came to me feeling like he won. He said he won because he landed some good body shots. I told him sometimes we must take the loss like a man, but it was commendable of him to fight at the last minute like that.”
Baah’s coach wanted Stone to get down to 142 pounds, but Stone was within the five-pound window to make weight. As soon as Stone got the call that his fight was back on, he went to work to drop down.
Stone said he fasted the Friday before the fight when he weighed 155 pounds. He got off from work early, ran for over an hour, and then went to the gym to work out in sweatpants. He was at 146.8 pounds at the end of the day Friday.
“I was proud of myself for dropping that weight,” Stone said. “I knew I was victorious. I did feel fatigued, but just from losing the weight. It comes with the territory.
“I felt like I was computing and calculating. I was looking for holes and openings. I was countering a lot. He knew he had lost the first round, so he returned with a vengeance in the second.
“I just tried to work my angles and my corners. I won using my mind. I don’t think I overwhelmed him with speed and power. I feel like I beat him with my boxing IQ.”
Stone said it felt great to be the headliner.
“It felt amazing,” Stone said. “I felt a lot of support from family, fans, coworkers. I just wanted to remain calm and confident. It’s like chess in there. I wanted to close the show with a knockout, but everyone was ecstatic with how well I fought. I enjoyed receiving the love after the fight.”
“I see myself going professional by next year, obtaining a championship, and submitting my legacy as from southern Maryland. The Rex here in Leonardtown was the perfect venue. It had a great vibe—the venue, the music, everything. The ring announcer was phenomenal. Shout out to the owner, Joe; he’s supported us for a while. It meant a lot to me that The Rex was sold out. What better place than Leonardtown? Chop Chop gave me jewels and praise for my performance which meant a lot.
“Coach Daryl and John [Richardson] do so much behind the scenes that don’t get brought to light. They orchestrate everything so well.”
Stone said his faith in Jesus Christ, the Messiah, grounds him. He said he’s just grateful for that. He said although his goal is to earn enough money to take care of his family, he knows with the right priorities and focus, a championship will come, and the money will follow.
Stone’s next match-up is August 26 in Westminster, where he will fight in the 147-pound Open Class.
Stone is thrilled for Teddy P. Fuller (154 pounds) and his professional debut this weekend, a Davis Promotions fight on
Saturday, Aug. 12, at Mary Virginia Merrick Recreation Center in Washington, D.C. ( This fight has been postponed.)
“I’ll be in the house to support him,” Stone said. “I’ve been trying my best to motivate him, but I already know he’s going to perform phenomenally. I’ll make sure he hears me when he’s in the ring. He’s trained extremely hard and will put a good show on and represent our gym [Knowledge Boxing Center] to the fullest.”
Another exciting evening bout was from rising Great Mills sophomore Yasir Ruffin, who remains undefeated at 8-0, who took on Tavon Brown of Charm City Boxing in a 125-pound match.
Ruffin credited his win partly because he spars with professional boxers, including Devante’ Alexander, who will be transitioning to the professional level soon, and Fuller.
“He [Brown] had power behind his punch today, but I could handle it. I felt well prepared today,” Ruffin said, with the support of his mother ringside. “I enjoyed the atmosphere here at The Rex. It has a boxing feel to it, and I’m glad my mom could be here to witness this. This is my first belt. It feels great to get this win.”
- SPAR – 156 lbs. Carlos Sartune (Knowledge Boxing) vs. Steve Remetz (Knowledge Boxing)
- 125 lbs. Lemuel Warrington (Charm City) def. Lennox Horton (Main Street)
- 119 lbs. Jannat Rafeeq (Unattached) def. Alexandra Brennan (Kaizen MMA)
- 132 lbs. David Steck (Charm City) def. Oleg Matthew Johnson (Kaizen MMA)
- 154 lbs. Jordan Lykes (Sugar Ray Leonard) def. Kacey Wheeler (Kaizen MMA)
- 165 lbs. Keith Saunders (Triple Threat) def. Corey Moore (Main Street Boxing)
- 156 lbs. Tyrell Frederick (KBC) def. Omar Azzam (Lion’s Den Boxing)
- 189 lbs. Malcolm Kearns (KBC) def. Kevin Shim (Kaizen MMA)
- 125 lbs. Yasir Ruffin (KBC) def. Tavon Brown (Charm City)
- 189 lbs. Arthur Payton III (Kaizen MMA) def. Feroze Schenck (KBC)
- 147 lbs. Isaiah Buck (KBC) def. Peter Suh (Kaizen MMA)
- 147 lbs. Kahleel Stone (KBC) def. Eddie Baah (Alexandria Boxing)