Photo by Rosie Cohen, Showtime Sports.
Ringside Report by John Archibald, Resolution Sports
ShoBox: The New Generation returned to Atlantic City on Friday night, putting on a nine-bout card at the historic Boardwalk Hall. The show was presented in coordination with GH3 Promotions, King’s Promotions and Sampson Boxing.
In the main event of the evening, super bantamweight Adam Lopez (15-0, 7 KOs) successfully defended his WBA Fedalatin title, outpointing the previously unbeaten Mario Munoz (16-1-1, 10 KOs) over 10 frames. At no point in the bout did either fighter truly take control, but Lopez was doing enough to secure the rounds. The eventual decision went in his favor by counts of 97-93 and 98-92 (twice).
Lopez-Munoz was put in a pretty disadvantageous situation, due to an incredible all-action bout in the co-feature that starred hard hitting super middleweights Ronald Ellis (12-0-1, 10 KOs) and Jerry Odom (13-2-1, 12 KOs). From the opening bell, these two fighters immediately engaged, and neither man was going to back down.
The second frame picked up right where the first one ended, with both combatants stepping into the phone booth and keeping the action on the inside. Odom added some new wrinkles to his game prior to this bout, slipping punches and working well off the bend. In the middle of the fight, he started to find some really good rhythm and never changed his focused demeanor despite the antics of Ellis to draw him out of character. Both fighters continued to give and take leading into the final rounds, and Odom really gained some momentum down the stretch to finish strong in this contest.
In the end, two of the three judges saw it the same way, 76-76, while Don Givens offered a baffling 78-74 card in favor of Ellis. A draw was certainly a fair result, as both fighters provided plenty of entertainment while never backing down from confrontation.
In a bit of a strange contest, super featherweight O’Shanique Foster (10-1, 7 KOs) handed Lavisas Williams (8-1-1, 3 KOs) his first professional loss, finding his rhythm early and never relinquishing it. Williams seemed to be consistently off-balance, and Foster capitalized on that for the first time late in the second round when he landed consecutive left hooks that put Williams on the deck. In the opening minute of the third frame, Foster landed a flurry on the ropes, and his right hand grazed the canvas because he was leaning forward. The same circumstance happened again in the third frame after Foster peppered him with a combination, as Williams suffered a third knockdown when he had to catch himself after falling forward.
Foster eventually finished off this bout in the seventh round, setting up a hard right hand with a jab that sent Williams across the ring. While he was able to get back to his feet, referee Shada Murdaugh took one look at the battered face of Williams and knew the fight was over. The official time of the stoppage was at the 57-second mark of the seventh frame.
In the opening televised bout, super middleweights John Magda (11-0-1, 7 KOs) and Christopher Brooker (7-1-1, 5 KOs) engaged in a good action fight that saw both fighters giving and taking. Magda looked to be more of the boxer, while Brooker was the clear aggressor throughout. Brooker did not have much use for the jab and worked his way inside with a series of left and right-handed hooks, finishing off his work with an uppercut up the middle when he had his opening. The contrasts in styles made it a bit difficult to score, and the three judges saw the action three different ways. After tallies of 77-74 (Magda), 78-74 (Brooker) and 76-76, this bout was deemed a majority draw.
In the feature bout of the non-televised undercard, welterweights Anthony “Juice” Young (11-2, 5 KOs) and Skender Halili (9-1, 9 KOs) engaged in an incredible scrap that officially certified the warrior status of Young. The Pleasantville native showed good rhythm while working off the bend in the first round and looking comfortable.
With the great hand power of Halili, it was bound to come into play at some point, and that first encounter was in the second frame when he buzzed Young with a huge left hook with a lot of time to go. Young’s legs showed the effects of the punch, but he did not immediately go down. However, he would eventually fall to a knee after a flurry in the center of the ring. Despite being on bad legs, the courageous Young was somehow able to get himself to the bell.
Young was on better footing after the break, and he seemed to be posturing himself back into the fight. As the following two rounds began to play out, it appeared that the biggest battle that Young was facing was with himself. A superb boxer with great technical skills, he opted to stay in the pocket and bang with the hard-hitting Halili rather than get off his numbers and move out of confrontation. The fifth frame saw Halili land a lot of clean shots that left one wondering how Young was even able to stay on his feet. He was displaying the heart of a warrior, but the approach was one that proved to be too dangerous.
The ringside doctors gave Young a long look following the fifth round, and an extreme laceration over his entire left eye forced them to call a halt to the bout. An obvious learning experience for Young, my complete expectation is that he will grow and get better from this outing. He just made it a much more difficult fight than it needed to be, and he will be fine with a refocused effort on not allowing himself to be lured away from his technical skillset.
Junior middleweight Arturo Trujillo (8-0, 5 KOs) continued his winning ways against Jeffrey Wright (3-2-1, 3 KOs), dropping his opposition in the opening frame following a straight right hand, left hand combo. In the second round, both men began unloading on one another by the ropes, and the referee in charge jumped in a bit prematurely to end the fight. The official time of the stoppage was at the 1:37 mark of the second frame.
Heavyweights Dan Pasciolla (6-1-1) and Brendan Barrett (3-0-2, 3 KOs) took part in a back-and-forth six-round affair, showing two completely different contrasts in style. The much taller Pasciolla looked to work behind his jab and range advantage, while the shorter Barrett loaded up on his punches and went more for broke. It was a good showing of boxer vs. puncher, and the action was difficult to score. The judges had that same complication, and a majority draw was the result when tallies of 59-55 (Barrett) and two counts of 57-57 were revealed.
In opening action, welterweight Hector Frometa (2-0) scored a unanimous decision over Jordan Rosario (0-3) in a four-frame bout, while Philadelphia welterweight Elijah Vines (1-0, 1 KO) impressed in his professional debut by dropping Alex Asbury (0-5) twice in the first round to earn a TKO at 1:32.