He has good grades, follows a strict diet and runs 3-5 miles every day. North County Sophomore James Singleton is a dedicated amateur boxer.
Singleton, 15, started boxing when he was 8 years old. He didn’t have to go far to learn. His father, Jason Singleton, began to train him. Jason has been in the ring or coaching for more than 13 years. He currently works at Functional Fitness in Ironton.
“He has to train and keep his grades up to get in the ring,” Jason said. “That’s the agreement.”
After winning numerous times and several titles, James took some time off from boxing after The Nationals in March 2007.
“He came to me and said he wanted to start again,” Jason said. “We had a lot of work to do. James had put on some weight.”
You can see James running the streets of Bonne Terre or at the St. Francois State Park. He must carefully watch what he eats. His diet consists of mostly proteins, and he stays away from sodas and fried foods. He has lost more than 20 pounds in preparation to fight at the Nationals on Feb. 5-7 in Independence. He will face up to seven other contenders, depending on age and weight. If he wins in the Nationals, he automatically qualifies for the Junior Olympics in the USA Amateur Boxing category.
James has a 42-14 record. He has never been knocked out or been knocked down in any of his fights.
He dedicated his entire season and gave all of his medals to Ronnie and Kim Long, in memory of his good friend, Adam Long.
Long and James became friends and trained together for several years. Long lost his life in a helicopter crash on Aug. 29. James, Jason and the Long family hope to host a match in Adam’s honor later this year.
James has won The Gateway Classic in St. Louis three times; the St. Louis Silver Gloves three times; the Henry Armstrong Tournament in St. Louis two times; the Missouri State Silver Gloves three times; placed sixth in the 2004 National Silver Gloves; placed fourth in the 2005 Ringside World Tournament; placed second in the 2006 Ringside World Tournament and won the 2006 Show-Me State Games in Columbia.
His brother Christopher is 6 years old. He has been boxing in his father’s garage since he was old enough to walk. He will wrestle his first match as an AAU wrestler at the end of January.
Jason works with Ceth Jordan at Farmington Martial Arts, where he is a boxing coach. The two coach Josh Weston, a North County graduate. Weston has a 13-0 record in mixed martial arts. He holds several belts and hopes to go pro and audition for the Ultimate Fighter.