Marian Catholic senior Gary Bagull can't wait to get the gloves on and take to the boxing ring tonight.
Marian Catholic is hosting a Fight Night at 7 p.m. today in its main gym.
You could say Bagull, a Schererville resident, has boxing is in his blood. His distant cousins are local boxing legends Marty and Eric Jakubowski.
"I just wish they had this my first three years," Bagull said. "When Coach (Nick) Novak put the sign up in January, I signed up right away and the training has been a lot of fun.
"This will be my first time in a real match."
Bagull works out at the Hammond Boxing Club, and loves the sport.
"A lot of sparring, so I have learned a lot," Bagull said. "I think this is going to be a big thing and I know the crowd will get into it.
"This is a great chance for us (students) to get up there and perform in front of a good crowd. I come from a boxing family, so it is really a big deal for me."
He said Eric is expected to be in the audience, but he is not sure if Marty will be able to make it.
The boxers will wear head gear and mouthpieces as well as 16-ounce gloves.
Novak, a 2001 Mount Carmel grad, participated in the school's legendary Fight Night and wanted to do one at Marian. He talked with athletic director Dave Mattio and they presented the idea to the administration. Marian had a similar event in the 1980s when Marian students boxed against Bloom High School students. Novak said there were questions about saferty, but all the safety measures are being taken, especially with the concerns over concussions in sports.
"We made every kid take a physical and we will have a trainer and doctor at the event," Novak said."There is that concern, that is why we addressed it and are proactive about it."
Novak got help from Mount Carmel's Mike Fitzgerald, known as "Mr. Fight Night" at Mount Carmel. Fitzgerald died recently.
Lansing resident and Marian freshman Addison Klausner said this is a natural for him.
"I play football and wrestle, so I am used to contact sports," Klausner said. "I think this is a great thing to give us a chance to show our skills and compete."
The cost is $5 and tickets can be purchased at the door. Refreshments will also be sold.