Bryant Jennings says ‘By-By’ to Alexander Dimitrenko in thrilling heavyweight fight
After two slow rounds to kick things off, the action heated up in round three between Bryant Jennings, 24-2 (14), and Alexander Dimitrenko, 41-4 (26) in their heavyweight bout. A right uppercut landed for Dimitrenko and forced Jennings into a corner. Jennings shook it off and landed a jab and a few body shots. Round four started slow until a big Dimitrenko right hand down the middle caught Jennings and floored him. Dimitrenko gave chase after Jennings, who survived the round and started to work his way back into the fight behind a stiff jab.
Both fighters treated the fans to a great fourth round that saw each fighter have his moments. Jennings landed the better work on the inside, connecting with nice body shots and uppercuts. Rounds five and six were exciting, since they featured more exchanges and in round seven, a series of left hook leads for Jennings seemed to stunt Dimitrenko’s forward movement.
Round eight was huge for Jennings, who continued to move away from Dimitrenko’s right hand. This movement set up a leaping left hook to the top of the head that dropped Dimitrenko. After Dimitrenko got up, Jennings floored him a second time witha series of counter shots. Dimitrenko moved away to try to survive and make it out of the eighth. Dimitrenko tried to work his way back into the fight but, after a booming right hand and two follow-up uppercuts – with the last punch sending Dimitrenko down again – referee Allen Huggins waved off the fight at 1:56 of the ninth round.
When the fight was over, Dimitrenko asked for a rematch and felt the stoppage was premature, since he got up right away and looked to be clear-headed, as Huggins waved off the fight. Jennings credited his conditioning for being able to survive the early knockdown.
Super middleweight Jesse Hart, 25-1 (21), came out guns-a-blazing against Mike Gavronski, 24-3-1 (15), in the first round. He landed several hard right hands that hurt Gavronski hurt and, in the second round, Hart allowed Gavronski to get off some punches in order to gauge what he brought to the table. Once he realized his skill set was far superior, Hart chased after Gavronski, landing more power shots to try and end the night. Finally in the third round, Gavronski got caught with a downward straight right, as he bent down. Gavronski got up before the count of 10 but was clearly hurt. Hart followed up with a power combination that started with another power right, which, this time, he followed up with a left hand. Gavronski rose to his feet again but was on spaghetti legs, which caused referee Eric Dali to call a halt to the fight at the :52 mark of round three.
With the victory, Hart retained his NABF 168-pound title. Afterward he demanded a rematch with WBO champion Gilberto Ramirez, the man who gave him his lone professioanl defeat.
Jason Sosa, 21-3-4 (15), opened the junior lightweight walkout bout in a hurry, blasting away on Reynaldo Blanco, 14-5 (8), with power shots, including a right hand that clearly rocked him. Blanco started to land his own right hands over top of the jabs with which Sosa tried to set up more combinations. What resulted were exchanges in which both fighters rocked each other. After three rounds, what was viewed as an get-in-the-win column fight for Sosa turned into an excuse for Blanco and Sosa to exchange power punches.
Sosa landed two power rights that caused Blanco to hold, which, in turn, made the referee take a point from Blanco. A pair of powerful right uppercuts rocked Sosa’s head back and Blanco looked to finally daze the former world champion after he peppered him with bombs. As the rounds continued, so did the vicious exchanges.
A low blow in the seventh by Sosa stopped the action and gave Blanco a rest. Sosa again had to stop the wave of power shots that were landing on him but with both of Blanco’s eyes beginning to swell shut, the latter showed his grit and determination, as the fight entered the final round.
Blanco waved Sosa in to keep bringing the action to start the round. A heated exchange resulted in Sosa landing a huge left hook that floored Blanco. No surprise that Blanco got up and proceeded to land his own uppercuts that rocked back Sosa’s head. At the 10-second mark, Sosa landed another crushing left that dropped Blanco, as the bell rang to end the fight. Blanco beat the count and forced the fight to go to the scorecards. Sosa won a unanimous decision by the scores of 77-72, 79-69 and 78-70. It was a tremendous war, with the only question really being: Why this fight wasn’t on ESPN?
2016 Olympic silver medalist and featherweight Shakur Stevenson, 8-0 (4), out-boxed Carlos Ruiz, 16-5-2 (6), over eight rounds, winning a unanimous decision on all three scorecards, at 80-72. Stevenson easily controlled the action in the ring by landing potshots and using his movement to frustrate Ruiz.
South Philadelphia bantamweight Christian Carto, 16-0 (11), boxed and moved behind an educated jab early against veteran Javier Gallo, 25-16-1 (13). After sitting down on his punches and exchanging with Gallo, Carto went back to boxing and moving, keeping full control of the fight. In the fifth round, he landed several combinations to the body and head that visibly stunned Gallo. Gallo had his best moment of the fight in the sixth, when he landed a booming overhand right. Carto responded well by moving and boxing till he regained control of the action. In the seventh, Carto looked as if he landed a sneaky left hook to the jaw of the tough Gallo, who crumbled to the canvas. It was ruled a slip but Carto controlled the rest of the round. Despite his best efforts, Gallo made it out of the eighth round and the fight. However all three scores were in favor of Carto, 80-71, 80-72 and 79-73.
Thomas LaManna, 26-2-1 (9), and Matthew Strode, 25-7 (9), battled it out in an action-packed junior middleweight fight. Strode came out moving forward, pushing LaManna back into the ropes, while he landed the shorter, more compact shots. LaManna responded by creating distance and landing sharper right hands. More than once LaManna was willing to look for shots, as opposed to creating them. In the fifth, LaManna landed a right hand, as Strode started to slip, resulting in a knockdown. The following three rounds were more of the same, with both fighters happy to exchange as much verbal barbs as they did punches. A point was taken from Strode for hitting behind the head, which helped LaManna win an already obvious decision. Scores for the fight were 79-71 by all three judges, in favor of LaManna.
Nineteen-year-old lightweight sensation Joseph Adorno, 9-0 (9), from Allentown, waited patiently until his opponent Agustine Mauras, 6-5-3 (3), wanted to exchange punches, which spelled the end for Mauras. Adorno glided into position behind a sharp jab, which allowed him to explode with power combinations that floored Mauras. When Mauras rose to his feet, Adorno made sure the fight came to an end at the 1:39 mark of round one, after landing another set of power body shots.
Heavyweight Oleksandr Teslenko, 14-0 (11), went the distance for just the third time in his career, as he dominated the game Avery Gibson, 9-7-4 (3). Teslenko landed a sharp right hand in the first round that scored the only knockdown of the fight. Both fighters were happy to exchange punches but Teslenko landed the shots before the much wider shots from Gibson could find their mark. All three judges saw the bout for Teslenko, with scores of 59-54, 58-55, and 60-53.
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