By Eric Duran
In front of 8000 screaming fans at the CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, PA, hometown favorite Sammy Vasquez Jr. dominated the grizzled veteran, Emmanuel Lartey over 10 rounds on the latest edition of Showtime’s Shobox: The New Generation.
Vasquez was in control of fight from the opening bell, controlling the distance and the pace for all 10 rounds. Vasquez landed 50% of his power shots, out working and over powering the tough fighter from Ghana. It looked like Vasquez could have stopped Lartey late in the fight but instead settled for a unanimous decision.
Craig Baker burst onto the scene with a devastating knockout over the favorite, Humberto Savigne. Savigne started off fast, looking like he was going to stop Baker in the opening moments of round one. Baker survived and scored the upset in round two.
In the opening bout of the night, Claudio Marrero schooled Orlando Rizo over 8 rounds in a featherweight contest. Rizo offered little competition as Marrero picked him apart over eight rounds, dropping him four times on route to a unanimous decision.
Vasquez vs. Lartey
Vasquez proves he’s a worthy contender, beats up Lartey.
Welterweight Sammy Vasquez Jr (18-0, 13 KOs) showed he has world class abilities as decisioned the tough Emmanuel Lartey over 10 rounds. Lartey (16-3-1, 7 KOs) was supposed to be a stern test for the rising Vasquez; however, Vasquez turned it into showcase.
Vasquez starts the bout off with a solid jab in the face of Lartey. Vasquez walks Lartey into a straight left hand. Vasquez wobbles Lartey with a 4 punch combination late in round on. Solid round for Vasquez in front of his hometown fans as he beats Lartey to the punch.
Vasquez and Lartey meet in the center of the ring and exchange combinations. Vasquez is pushing Lartey around here in round two, proving to be too strong for Lartey. Lartey is having a problem dealing with the speed of Vasquez. Vasquez is cherry picking Lartey as the right eye of Lartey begins to swell.
Vasquez is controlling round three with a stiff jab from the outside. Lartey is trying to close the distance, but Vasquez catches him every time as he comes in. Vasquez is showing superior footwork as he proves to be too versatile for Lartey.
There is great action to open round four as both fighters land big shots along the ropes. A counter left from Vasquez over the top stops Lartey in his tracks. Vasquez is picking apart Lartey in the middle parts of the round. It’s another easy round to score in favor of Vasquez as he catches Lartey with a right hook to end round 4.
Vasquez is finding a groove in round as he opens up with the combination punching. Lartey cannot find Vasquez in this fight, as Vasquez is showing superior defense. A low blow from Lartey halts the action momentarily in round five. Vasquez responds with a vicious combination to end round the stanza. Vasquez is landing over 50% of his power punches through five rounds.
Vasquez is closing the distance and starting to sit down on his punches as Lartey slows down in round six. Lartey is warned for his second low blow. Vasquez is wearing down Lartey as he bangs away at a stationary target. Vasquez is toying with Lartey late, straight dominating his over- matched foe.
Lartey offers a little more offense in round seven, but Vasquez is still having his way. Vasquez closes the round with a flurry in the corner as Lartey covers up.
Vasquez is catching Lartey with vicious combinations as Lartey covers up on the ropes. Both fighters are lying on the ropes trading combinations. Lartey is slowing down as Vasquez throws combinations to the body. Vasquez steps back and draws blood from the nose of Lartey with a straight left hand. Vasquez is domination Lartey through eigth rounds.
Lartey is a beaten fighter in round nine as Vasquez traps him in a corner. Vasquez senses a hurt fighter in Lartey and seems to have stepped off the gas pedal. Vasquez is simply pop shoting him from the outside. Vasquez opens up and drills Lartey with a right hook to the body.
Lartey’s face is badly swollen from the constant punishment from Vasquez through nine rounds. It looks as though Vasquez doesn’t want to hurt Lartey and is simply carrying his foe.
Dominating performance for Sammy Vasquez who takes a wide unanimous decision by scores of 100-90 and 99-91 (twice).
Savigne vs. Baker
Baker shocks the world!!! Stops Savigne.
Humberto Savigne (12-2, 9 KOs) opened some eyes with his second round destruction of Jeff Lacy in his previous fight. Although his opponent is undefeated, Craig Baker (16-0, 12 KOs) has faced relatively soft competition. Will Savigne continue to impress or is Baker a live underdog, these questions will be answered tonight.
Light Heavyweight unknown, Craig Baker, stops promising contender Humberto Savigne in the 2nd round. Savigne, who reported to have put on over 20lbs overnight, is starched and unable to continue after a barrage of power punches from Baker. Baker stays undefeated at 16-0, 12 KOs while Savigne drops to 12-2.
Savigne is drilling Baker with straight right hands as Baker holds on to the ropes waiting for the ref to step in and break up the action. The visibly bigger Savigne is pounding away on Baker as the round continues. Baker recovers and has a solid ending to a rough start in round one.
Baker catches Savigne with a combination, hurting Savigne badly. Baker drops Savigne with a big left hook and Savigne crashes down to the canvass. Savigne tries to get up, but is out on his feet, staggering around in his corner as referee Ernie Shariff stops the fight at 1:58 of round number two.
Baker shocks the world!!! Stops Savigne
Marrero vs Rizo
Featherweight Claudio Marrero drops Orlando Rizo four times en route to an eight round, dominating decision. Marrero used his fast hands and counter punching ability to build up a safe lead through five rounds..
Former amateur standout Claudio Marrero (18-1, 13 KOs) kicks off the ShoBox triple header against Orlando Rizo, (18-6, 11 KOs). After losing a close decision to Jesus Cuellar for the WBA Featherweight in 2013, Marrero used 2014 as a confidence builder, going 3-0.
Marrero is swinging away from the gates, catching Rizo with a straight left hand. Good two-way action to begin round one as Rizo looks to have come to compete and not just lay down for Marrero. Marrero looks very sharp in the opening round, closing it with a straight left hand.
A feint with the jab is followed by a straight left hand from Marrero, dropping Rizo. Rizo beats the count, but Marrero is trying to close the show. Rizo catches Marrero with a straight left hand that staggers Marrero along the ropes. Exciting second round as both fighters are landing their money punches. Marrero closes the round with a right hook.
Rizo comes out looking to take momentum, but is caught with a blistering combination as Marrero drops Rizo again. Marrero catches Rizo with a counter left hand, hurting Rizo again. Marrero cannot miss in the third round. A counter right hook drops Rizo on the inside for the second time in the round. Only the bell saves Rizo. Marrero lands 21 power punches to Rizo’s 3 in round three.
Marrero cannot miss with the straight left hand tonight. Rizo is experiencing swelling under his right eye. It was a slow round of action in round four, but another round for Marrero in the books.
A straight left, right hook drops Rizo :30 into round five, it’s the fourth knockdown for Marrero in the fight. Rizo is able to survive the rest of the round, mostly due to Marrero holding and resting on the inside.
Marrero is looking for one shot in round six. Marrero seems content with knowing he has built a safe lead on the cards and isn’t pushing for the stoppage quite like he was earlier in the fight. In what was an action-packed fight through four rounds, the pace as slow considerably over the last two stanzas.
Marrero is back to throwing combinations again in round seven, opening up more. Rizo has proved to be a tough customer in weathering the storm of Marrero. The defensive greatness of Marrero is on show in round seven.
Rizo is putting together his best round since the opening stanza in round eight. Solid action as Marrero bangs away to close out a dominant performance against Rizo.
Marrero coasted through the final three rounds to win a wide unanimous decision with scores of 78-71, 78-70, and 80-68.