- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Seventeen, a senior in high school and about to step in the ring for his fourth professional fight, Thomas Stone’s Dusty Hernandez Harrison, also known as “The Beltway Boricua,” is the talk of the town.
On Saturday, Harrison will take on Booker T. Mullins, from Spartanburg, S.C., who stepped up just two weeks ago to confirm he was willing to take on the youngest professional in the country.
Mullins was knocked out just 2 minutes 54 seconds into his last fight against Perry Ballard of Martinsburg, W.Va. That fight was held at the Patriot Center on the campus of George Mason University.
Mullins will be looking for his fourth career win.
Harrison said he knows he has been presented with a great opportunity and just as his tattoo on his chest reads, he feels “blessed.” In all of his amateur fights, he’s proud of the fact that he never hit the mat.
“I try not to get hit or hurt in the ring,” Harrison said. “I think I handle it well for my age.”
The card will begin at 7 p.m. at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.
Harrison was in the ring on Dec. 10 at the same venue when he defeated Terrell Davis in a technical knockout after Davis went down three times in Round 1.
Keystone Boxing out of Temple Hills sought out Harrison. Promoter Gene Molovinsky has been in the business for 30 years and was impressed with Harrison and scheduled the four-rounder.
“Dusty is big time,” Molovinsky said. “He’s our co-main event. He wanted time to meet with his fan-base so he’ll be doing that after his fight right before intermission. Ty Barnett will challenge Damon Antoine of Akron, Ohio, in eight rounds of action after intermission.”
Buddy Harrison, Dusty’s father and manager, said he just wanted his son to learn how to take care of himself as the rough neighborhood presented some danger.
Dusty, born May 21, 1994, in Washington, D.C., has been in the gym ever since and is learning life lessons from his father who opens the gym for area children who want to pick up the sport.
“I wanted him to learn how to take care of himself,” Buddy Harrison said. “I did the right thing. It’s working out for him. The crowds love him, not just because he knows how to fight, but because he’s 17.”
Dusty, the Stone senior who currently has a 3.0 GPA, is now an undefeated welterweight with a 3-0 professional record with one knockout.
Harrison finished his amateur career after 197 fights and won three Junior National Golden Gloves championships. In his professional debut, he defeated Alphonso Alexander on June 11 at the DeSoto Civic Center in Southaven, Miss.
Dusty remains a free agent. Buddy, who is also owner of Old School Boxing in Fort Washington, and mother Lynda Hernandez are managing his career.
The Harrison family had to make a decision regarding Dusty’s basketball career at Stone, deciding it was best to step down off the team in order to focus on boxing, but he wishes his team well as the Cougars (24-1 overall) faced Centennial of Howard County in the Class 3A state semifinals at the University of Maryland’s Comcast Center in College Park on Thursday, a game too late for inclusion into this edition.
Stone defeated Potomac of Prince George’s County to win the 3A South Region title on Saturday, the program’s fourth regional title in the last five years.