8:10pm – Connectivity challenges have been overcome! The place is getting full – probably three quarters full so far, and they’re still coming in.
8:18pm – Programming note – Tonight’s festivities begin with an no-headgear exhibition between Willshaun Boxley and Phillip Adyaka, refereed by Gary Miezwa. There will be no round-by-round for this, but I’ll give you my judgement when it’s over.
“Golden” Caleb Truax (now 14-0 with 9 kayos) defeats Kerry Hope (now 12-3 with 1 kayo) by unanimous decision (97-93, 97-93, 97-93) after ten rounds, for the WBF International middleweight title
[connection temporarily lost]
Hope is the aggressor this round, but his punches to Truax’s body have little effect. Truax finally goes downstairs and Hope flinches away from contact. Hope bends forward at the waist trying to get in close, and Truax unloads to the head, spinning Hope around. Truax is having some success getting himself low and attacking the body. Hope charges inside and is stopped short by a right, he loses his balance and Truax, pulling a punch, inadvertently pushes him down. No knockdown. Touch gloves and resume…boxing carefully, neither man is the agressor at this point. Hope catches Truax with a wide right hook that travels so far it has no power when it lands. Hope pushes Truax into the ropes, and as Truax bounces back into play the bell rings.
Hope hits Truax with a tapping right, Truax hits him back with a hard right to the body, and Hope again reaches out and taps him. There’s been a headbutt and both men are bleeding – Truax from above his right eyebrow and Hope from his right temple, behind the hairline. There’s a pause while both men are examined by the ring doctor, and they come back to it. Boxing, boxing, and Truax lands a vicious right hook to the boyd of Hope. Hope comes back with his best body punch of the night so far. This is developing into a more tactical fight now…Hope reaches out with a straight right arm and flicks his wrist, connecting a slapping “hook.” Truax corners Hope on the ropes and lands a good right-left, then Hope escapes. Truax is hitting Hope harder now, and it’s slowing Hope, may be sapping his strength and power, too. Truax takes a jab to the head that reopens his cut and now his right cheek is covered with blood. Hope’s hair is drenched in his own blood. Truax ducks a Hope hook and comes back with a hurtful shot to the body. Bell, round.
Hope comes out for the fourth slugging, but his attack wanes after about ten seconds. Big combo by Hope, and Truax responds with a hard right jab. Hope scores with three consecutive right hooks, but Truax hits him and hurts him with a right to the gut. The two circle and Truax again hurts Hope to the belly. After about fifteen seconds Truax hurts Hope again with the same shot. Now Truax lands a hard uppercut to Hope’s abdomen. Hope jumps in on the attack but is repelled by a hook and then chased with a jab. Finally Hope lands a 1-2, but the bell interrupts his progress.
Both men start the fifth jabbing, now Truax lands a right that moves Hope backward. Now Truax is coming forward, but Hope steps to the right and right hooks Truax to the head. Truax lands a left and Hope counters with a mirror image left. Hope lands a single power shot which rouses his corner, but Truax goes hard to the body, left-right-left-right, forcing Hope to retreat. Here’s a soft clubbing right to the head by Hope. Hope is bouncing on his toes, Truax is noticeably flatfooted. Truax lunges and with a right, and Hope hits him at the same time with a counter right.
Both fighters are in a hurry to begin the sixth. Hope lands an overhand, Truax two hooks in return. Truax goes to the body and scores with three straight shots, Hope grimacing in pain. Hope rams a good jab into Truax’s face, but Truax responds with a right/body, left/body, right/head. Hope, coming forward, gets inside. Truax loads up on a right but misses and eats a counter. Truax ducks an attack and comes back with a hard left-right to the body of Hope. Hope backs Truax up to the ropes, Truax ducks under his attack, and comes back with a hard one-two to the body. Hope flurries again, and Truax escapes again. Hope lands a left hook to the body of Truax at the bell while Truax misses with a counter.
Jabbing, jabbing…Hope lands a good left to Truax’s face. Truax goes left-right to Hope’s head, Hope sways but does not fall. Suddenly he comes back to score – two flurries from Hope allow him to get inside, and Hope shows that he’s willing to eat a power shot in order to land one. Hope charges in on Truax, their bodies crash together, and Hope is thrown off balance but appears unhurt. Truax is missing with more regularity now. Now Truax lands a straight left, Hope responds with a good right hook. Truax thunders back with an extended combination of which the first four power shots land – just on the strength of that strong finish Truax may have stolen away a round that he was losing.
Hope establishes the jab to start this round. Now he gets bold with a triple jab, but all three punches miss. Hope connects with a right hook, Truax goes downstairs and connects to the body twice. Hope clearly has more wind and is coming forward, but Truax is landing to the body. Here’s a big straight left and then a right hook from Truax. The two trade as Truax comes barrelling out of a corner, Truax connecting with 2 and Hope with just 1 punch. Truax grabs Hope’s right arm and bangs an uppercut into Hope’s body. At the ten second warning Hope flurries hard and Truax fails to answer back.
Truax’s cornermen stay out of the ring while cutman Jim Maurine works on hie eyebrow.
Hope comes out jabbing again, Truax connects with a straight, Hope with a jab. Truax throws a flurry of punches but Hope ducks and bobs away from every punch, now the fighters clinch. A right hook from Truax lands. Hope now backs Truax into the ropes and attacks, Truax fires back two power shots that land, but Truax is sucking wind. Truaxs tries to clinch but Hope prevents it bwith another flurry, ending with a good right hook to Truax’s head. Hope follows the retreating Truax into a corner, lands a right, grins at Truax, and then eats a Truax left hand that he well deserved for that cheesy move.
Truax is gasping and panting in his corner before the tenth.
Hope comes out and immediately throws a single left, then a few seconds later a single right. Truax fires back – it’s a Truax jab, Hope jab, Truax jab. Now Truax is bleeding from the nose. Hope gets off again, and he’s just too fast for Truax here in the final round. Truax is having trouble getting off. Hope goes upstairs, and now Truax doubles him over with a tremendous right hook to the gut. Hope recovers and chases Truax into a corner. Truax lands a good hook and spins Hope around, the two end up in a clinch. Hope feints, stutter steps – is he taunting Truax? Truax tags him with a big left to the chin. After the ten second warning there is no action for nearly eight seconds, then both fighters try to steal the round with flurries at the bell, but neither does any damage.
Mohammed Kayongo (now 15-2-1 with 11 kayos) defeats James Todd (now 2-2-1 with no kayos), by TKO in round 4 of 8 scheduled, for the WBF Intercontinental welterweight title.
This round begins as the fight will probably play out – a brawl with little artistry. I can too you this much: Todd likes it on the inside but Kayongo does his gest work from the outside. Midround Kayongo tagged Todd with a thunderclap of a short hook with no evident effect. Near the end of the round referee Mark Nelson warns both fighters to keep their punches up; Kayongo turns to look at Nelson and Todd takes advantage, chasing Kayongo around the ring and landing punishing shots until the bell.
This round begins a little more tentative. Kayongo is jabbing effectively from the outside, not to set up any immediate power shots, but keeping Todd at bay and snapping his head back occasionally. Todd misses with a big left-right hook combo and Kayongo laughs out loud as he scoots away. Moments later Todd gets closer and lands a couple of nice shots to the body and head. Kayongo splits Todd’s defense with a serious of straight rights and lefts which score to the face. Todd misses a big shot and his grunt turns into a shout with the effort. Todd lands a grunting right and Kayongo hits hi mback much harder. Kayongo cracks Todd with a huge combination that puts his mmouthpiece out and leaves Todd rolling on the mat. He regains his senses and rises to his feet but still looks disoriented. A break for Todd as his mouthpiece can’t be found. His corner locates one and is instructed to insert it, pronto. Boxing resumes with Kayongo on the attack, but no further damage is done before the bell.
Todd, who did good work in the first while pressuring Kayongo, is staying on the outside. A series of jabs and straights miss, but now he gets inside and eats some hooks and an uppercut, while landing one good short right to the ribs of Kayongo. Kayongo is moving backwards and laterally and countering Todd’s persistent attack. Kayongo lands a glancing right to the cheek of Todd. Todd catches Kayongo in a corner and pummels him with an extended series of soft hooks – good show at this point for him. Kayongo hits him back harder. Big left hook, big single right, another big left for Kayongo. Now Todd is wobbling and stumbling into Kayongo’s corner. Mouthpiece is out. Todd’s left eye is very puffy. After getting his mouthpiece cleaned and reinserted Todd resumes his pursuit of Kayongo, landing one good right. There’s a clinch, during which Todd lands one more right. Kayongo is taking some time off. Kayongo lands a couple of good right hooks to the boyd before the bell, and the fighters engage in a staring contest after the bell.
Todd comes out with murder on his mind, and connects with about five hard body shots, but Kayongo gets away. Kayongo lands a right hook, then another one at a weird upward angle. Hookercut? Todd is trying to apply pressure, but Kayongo is punishing him with uppercuts. The welt under Todd’s left eye is turning dark in the center. Todd charges inside, lands a good right uppercut, Kayongo backs off and lands two hard right hooks and a left uppercut. Todd is game, and continues to throw and land a Cristobal Cruz-like fusillade of body and head shots. Here’s the end:w Referee Mark Nelson is poised to break the fighters apart when Kayongo lands a one-two that sends Todd tumbling and rolling into the ropes, and Nelson calls the fight. Kayongo owns the WBF Intercontinental welterweight belt.
Marcus LeVesseur (now 12-2-1) defeated Bruce Johnson (now 8-5)
Derek Abram (now 26-21 defeated Gabe Walbridge (now 23-15)
Jedidiah Jones (now 0-1) was defeated by Isaiah Mahto (now 1-1)
Charles Meir (3-1 with 2 kayos) -vs- Marvin Rodriguez (2-2 with 1 kayo), middleweights, scheduled for 4 rounds
This fight is canceled. Rodriguez didn’t show up at the weigh-in last night, and rumor is he is still unaccounted for today. Too bad, it would have been a barnburner!
Michael Faulk (now 2-0 with no kayos) defeats Ryan Soft (now 1-1-1 with 1 kayo) by unanimous decision after four rounds.
The round begins with Soft winging some shots, high and wide, that miss their mark. Faulk is more precise with his punches, and lands some good leads, both lefts and rights. The pattern seems to be that Soft lunges in with shots that miss, and Faulk makes him pay. The pattern is broken when Soft connects with a hard short right that resounds through the auditorium. Faulk returns the favor with a flurry of hurtful power shots. There’s a low blow mixed in, and Soft takes a moment in a neutral corner to recover. At the ten second sounding, both men goes wings to the wind, and though Soft starts out better, Faulk connects with some shots that bounce Soft into and off the ropes. The two continue punching after the bell and have to be broken up by referee Gary Miezwa.
Our combatants return to form as the second begins, with Faulk throwing sharp and accurate shots that connect, and Soft bringing double the aggression with wild shots that hurt when they connect, but more often than not they miss. Some rough tactics – pushing, I think – bring an admonishment to both fighters from the referee, and when they resume, Soft seems to have the upper hand. At one point Faulk seeks to turn Soft’s aggression inward by crowding in, and Soft can be heard shouting “Get off me!” Soft definitely won this round, but could he be punching himself out?
Soft hurts Faulk to the body early, Faulk ersponds with an effective right hook and straight left to the head of Soft. Soft’s wide punches leave him so wide open that it’s painful to watch, but he seems to be landing with twice the force of Faulk. Soft throws more hooks to the body of Faulk, then goes upstairs and sends Faulk reeling backwards into the ropes. Johnny Johnson, in Faulk’s corner, is demanding that Faulk let his hands go and attack the body. Faulk lands a single right shortly before the bell and receives a hail of power shots in return. End round 3.
Soft resumes his lunging attack, and Faulk counters effectively while laying back into the ropes. Another exchange ends with the two in a clinch and Faulk popping Soft’s hard on the back of the head. Soft is slowing now, and Faulk lands a furious volley of rights and lefts that seems to take some of the fight out of him. Faulk is now throwing wide rights that tomahawk Soft on the left ear and temple. Ref Miezwa warns Faulk for hitting behind the head. Faulk lands a hurtful right that seems to leave Soft dazed, then backs away. Johnson is losing his mind in the corner! Faulk attacks again, and scores well. As the round ticks away the two trade in the middle of the ring, Faulk getting the better of it.