An enthusiasm for boxing that started in junior high for WVU Boxing Club team member Dan Gibson culminated this past spring with a United States Boxing Association national championship in the 165 weight class.
Gibson—a Spanish major from West Deptford, N.J. who joined the WVU Boxing Club during his first week on the WVU campus nearly three years ago—has won 19 of his 29 fights during his collegiate career.
Of those 19 victories, he takes the most pride in his latest win—which gave him the opportunity to bring a national championship in his weight class back to WVU.
“It’s been my goal to be a national champion since my freshman year,” said Gibson. “Coach Lial told me after my first win that he could make me a national champion, so I entered every fight with that goal.”
It was a goal with a high bar, as two of his teammates—Jen Morales and Shannon Reilley—won USBA national championships in their respective weight classes in 2013 and 2014, respectively.
Gibson—who also leads the club as their president—practiced four times per week at Mylan Park in the hopes of continuing the legacy of winning for the program.
According to Bruce Brubaker, coordinator of club sports at WVU, it was his dedication and passion that allowed him to prevail.
“Dan is always the first boxer at practice and the last to leave,” said Brubaker. “His desire to represent WVU as a champion has always been one of true passion. He wears the WVU logo with great pride.”
Gibson said he takes immense pride in his ability to bring home his first national championship and the third consecutive national championship for WVU—but if he has anything to say about it, it won’t be his last.
“I’m so thrilled to win this championship,” said Gibson. “It sets the bar higher for me to continue to compete at tougher levels.”
On the heels of his championship, Gibson possesses the same determined mindset moving forward that led him to victory.
“You just have to keep working,” he said.
CONTACT: Bruce Brubaker, Student Recreation Center
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