Atlantic City and Trenton Shows in New Jersey Friday and Saturday!
By: Ken Hissner
New Jersey boxing is off to a fast start with two shows scheduled this week. Friday at Bally’s Event Center, in Atlantic City with 11 bouts scheduled over Sho Box. The main event features two topsuper bantamweights in Adam “Mantequillo” Lopez, 16-0-1 (8), of San Antonio, TX, against Daniel “Baby Face Assassin” Roman, 21-2-1 (7), of Garden Grove, CA.
The co-feature has Ronald Ellis, 13-0-1 (10), out of Lynn, MASS against Philly’s Christopher Brooker, 11-2 (5), in a cruiserweight bout. Two other Philly boxers on the card are Keenan Smith, 9-0 (3), returning after 14 months of inactivity. Also, top former amateur star super heavyweight Darmani “Tight” Rock, 6-0 (4) making his first fight near home.
Top New Jersey prospect Leroy “Lucious” Davila, 4-0 (2), of New Brunswick is againstAnthony Taylor, 4-0 (1), of Warren, OH. Stephon “Bossman” Young, 15-0-3 (6), of Chicago, IL, is against Elton Dharry, 20-5-1 (13), of Guyana living in Brooklyn, NY. FinallyKenneth “Showstopper” Sims, Jr., 10-0 (3), of St. Louis, MO, is against Emmanuel “Renegade”, 15-1-1 (5), of San Diego, CA.
In Trenton Saturday at the Sun National Bank Center, Rene Aiken of Boss Lady Promotions, and Honorable Mayor Eric Jackson returns for her second show at this facility“Bridge Wars” featuring her nephew the return of 3 division champion “Super” Zab Judah, 42-9 (29), headlines against Jorge Luis Munguia, 13-7 (5), of Hondoras. “I’m coming in at 143 and expect to go down to 140”. The co-feature has Derrick “Take it to the Bank” Webster, 21-1 (11), against Thomas Awimbono, 25-5-1 (21), of Accra, GH, for the vacant USBO super middleweight title. Trenton’s own cruiserweight Mike Hilton, 4-0 (4), returns back to this facility again. Camden’s Vidal Rivera, 4-0 (3), in the featherweight division meets James Early, 2-1 (0), of Seat Pleasant, MD. Also, on the undercard middleweight Jimmy Kelleher, 2-0 (2), of Scranton, PA, Philly’s Donald Smith, 3-0 (2), and Darin Holiday, of Philly making his debut against the grandson of “The Easton Assassin” Larry Holmes. In a female bout Carla Torres, 5-3 (0), of PR and Cleveland, OH, is featured. This will be a pro-am with boxers from NJ, NY and PA.
Jason Sosa – From a Diamond in the Rough to World Champion!
By: Ken Hissner
Several years ago this writer did an article on now WBA World Super Featherweight champion Jason “El Canito” Sosa, 19-1-4 (15), from Camden, NJ. He hasn’t lost a fight in 6 years and that was because he was ill advised though not at his best fighting weight to take on someone 2 weight classes higher than him.
On November 12th Sosa will defend his WBA super featherweight title against Stephon “Swifty” Smith, 24-2 (14), of Liverpool, UK, in Monte Carlo. Smith re-won the vacant WBC Silver title in his last fight after losing in an IBF World super featherweight the previous month. Sosa won the title in June in China stopping previously unbeaten Javier Fortuna in 11 rounds in Beijing, China. This will be his first title defense.
After his only loss Sosa won his next fight he fought a pair of draws with Philly’s Angel Ocasio, 6-0, in Philly at the National Guard Armory with both being majority draws. At Temple University’s McGonigle Hall he stopped Isaac Suarez, 7-1, and followed up in his next fight stopping CT’s own Joseph Perez, 10-1, at the Mohegan Sun Casino, Uncasville, CT. He would return to his home state of New Jersey in Atlantic City at Bally’s Event Center and stop Georgian Georgi Kevlishvili, 12-5.
In April of 2014 Sosa scored a knockout over Michael Brooks, 10-1-1, at Bally’s. In March of 2015 he stopped Costa Rica’s Bergman Aguilar, 12-1-1, at Philly’s 2300 Arena. In 2015 he won 5 fights and fought a draw with former WBA Super World featherweight champion Nicholas Walters, 26-0, of Jamaica, at the Turning Stone Resort in Verona, NY. In those 5 previous wins he made his third appearance in Puerto Rico knocking out Jerry Belmontes, 19-7, who in his previous 26 fights had never been stopped.
The draw with Walters earned Sosa a WBA World super featherweight title fight against Javier Fortuna, 29-0-1, in Beijing, China, where he was taking away the belt by stoppage. Sosa has surprised people in the boxing world but delighted his many fans. Take it from this writer that Sosa is one of the nicest young men you would want to meet. His trainer and manager is Raul “Chino” Rivas and they have recently signed with promoter Bob Arum’s Top Rank who partners with J Russell Peltz of Peltz Boxing who is an IBHOF promoter who went with Sosa and Rivas to China to win the title.
One of the things remarkable about Sosa is he only had 3 amateur fights. He trained out of Berlin, NJ, and when the gym moved to Cherry Hill, NJ, he moved with them. He is never short of sparring partners. Also training in the gym is No. 6 WBC Philly contender Tevin “American Idol” Farmer, 23-4-1, from Philly who is the NABF champion and fighting for Peltz December 2nd. Another Philly boxer is lightweight Anthony Burgin, 10-2. In the past he sparred with both.
Sampson Lewkowicz has a 3 fight option due to having the former champion Fortuna. Sosa is currently on a 16 fight winning streak.
KEN HISSNER: You have come a long way since our last interview. Have the last two fights increased your confidence immensely?
JASON SOSA: I believe it did by you can’t be too confident. I still have to keep proving myself and we just have more to learn.
KEN HISSNER: You have had 3 fights in Puerto Rico. Did the fans make you feel at home there?
JASON SOSA: Yes Puerto Rico always welcomes me home with open arms. I love Puerto Rico and they love me.
KEN HISSNER: You seem to have a close relationship with your manager and trainer “Chino” Rivas. How long has he trained you?
JASON SOSA: Chino and I have been together for 5 years now and he has taught me so much not only in the boxing world but as a father figure. Our relationship is like father and son.
KEN HISSNER: Have you seen your next opponent Stephen Smith?
JASON SOSA: Just a little for I leave that to the team so they can get me ready for Smith. I don’t do the studying on fighters. What are they going to teach me?
KEN HISSNER: Would you say the Walters fight has been your toughest in your career?
JASON SOSA: On the books it says so but I believe every fight just because of my amateur experience (3 fights) which I didn’t have so many.
KEN HISSNER: How has your sparring been going?
JASON SOSA: My preparation for Smith has been going great. My sparring partners have been great for they push me to the limit. I work with Marcelo, Julian and are the main guys that have been helping me.
KEN HISSNER: You have always been very approachable. I believe this has only added to your popularity. How different has it been since winning a world title?
JASON SOSA: It’s been the same only fighters are now listening to me now and looking up to me as their motivation. If this guy with only 3 amateur fights could do it so can I.
KEN HISSNER: Thank you for taking the time to answer questions. Is there anything you want to say to your many fans?
JASON SOSA: Thank you Ken.
Dusty Hernandez-Harrison and Thomas “Cornflake” Lamanna Rock the House at the Philly Arena!
By: Ken Hissner
This was a Peltz Boxing Promotion with GH-3 who has a good young group of boxers and on a Thursday night. CBS Sports Center will televise the show. The place was packed with standing room only. This one goes back to Ward and Gatti without the hoopla.
Photo Credit: Darryl Cobb Jr.
No. 4 Thomas “Cornflake” Lamanna, 21-2 (9), of Millville, NJ, was defeated by No. 1 Dusty Hernandez-Harrison, 30-0-1 (16), of South East D.C. for the vacant USBA welterweight title. “I thought he won 6-4 not like the wide scores,” said Lamanna.
In the opening round Hernandez-Harrison moved around the ring countering well. Lamanna seemed to have problems with the speed of his opponent. In the second round Hernandez-Harrison landed a 3-punch combination. Lamanna is having a problem hitting the elusive Hernandez-Harrison.
In the third round Lamanna flurried having Hernandez-Harrison against the ropes only to have Hernandez-Harrison come back with 3 left hooks. Lamanna came out all fired up landing half a dozen punches without return. Things started heating up in the third round.
In the fourth round a lead right by Hernandez-Harrison rocked Lamanna who came back with a flurry of punches. In the fifth round Lamanna was doing well which seemed to anger Hernandez-Harrison who came back punching Lamanna around the ring. Lamanna has swelling around both eyes. In the sixth round Hernandez-Harrison is putting more behind his punches. Both boxers have plenty of fans in the crowd.
In the seventh round Lamanna landed a power right to the head of Hernandez-Harrison who was holding on. A half a round later it was all Hernandez-Harrison. In the eighth round both went back and forth controlling the round but Hernandez-Harrison’s hand and foot speed always keeps him one step ahead of Lamanna.
In the ninth round it’s more action from both but Hernandez-Harrison continues to batter Lamanna whose eyes are swelling while Hernandez-Harrison is unmarked. In the tenth and final round the fans are yelling “Dusty, Dusty”, as he is looking for a knockout to avoid a hometown decision. This was one of the best fights seen here in sometime with one from Millville and the other D.C.
Judges Bernard Bruni had it 98-92 while judges Tom Schreck and Dana DePaolo had it 97-93 while this writer had it 100-90.
In the co-feature former NFL player Ray “Cincinnati Kid” Edwards, 11-0-1 (7), out of Cinn., OH, won a 6 round decision over southpaw New Jersey champion Dan Pasciolla, 8-1-1 (0), out of Brick, NJ.
In the first two rounds it was the light punching Pasciolla who was taking good body shots from Edwards. The action was very slow. In the third round and fourth rounds Edwards was too strong for Pasciolla.
In the fifth and sixth rounds Pasciolla got his jab in but it wasn’t enough to offset Edwards.
Atlantic City’s Anthony “Juice” Young 14-2 (6) easily stopped Malik “The Freak” Jackson, 3-10-4 (2), of Newark, NJ, at the end of the fourth round stopped by ring physician.
In the opening round a hard right by Young to the head of Jackson dropped him. Referee Clark gave him the 8 count. Jackson did what he had to do to get through the round.
On paper it looked like a mismatch and this writer was surprised Boxing Director Greg Sirb approved it.
In the second round it was more of the same but Jackson staying on his feet. In the third round Jackson’s corner is yelling out instructions but one wonders how they put him in with Young. In the fourth round Young continued bombing Jackson who has little power to hold Young off. A left uppercut to the midsection by Young dropped Jackson At the bell a left hook by Young to the head had Jackson out on his fight.
His corner should have stopped it but it took the ring physician to do it. This was a total mismatch from the time they signed the contracts. Working the corner for Young was Chino Rivas assisted by Rashiem Jefferson.
The Hottest prospect in Philly since 1984 Olympic Gold medalist Meldrick Taylor is Philly’s Jaron “Boots” Ennis, 6-0 (5), from the Germantown section of the city who showed flashes of greatness and needed a fight like Eddie Diaz, 2-4-2 (0), of Compton, CA, gave him. “I should have done better,” said Ennis. You can’t knock everybody out!
In the opening round Ennis came out orthodox showing very fast hands and going to the body of Diaz. Diaz managed to get some punches to the chin of Ennis. In the second round Ennis continued looking terrific but anytime you are in with a fighter from Compton, CA, which is possibly the baddest city in the country you have to be aware he came to fight. Diaz had a small cut outside of his right eye.
In the third round Diaz would take 3 to land 1 which was usually a right to the head of Ennis. The round was won by Ennis but he got rocked at the bell with a Diaz right to the chin. In the fourth and final round Ennis could not hurt Diaz who was one tough fighter. So Ennis continue to throw combinations and uppercuts to the body of Diaz who never took a back step. Ennis needed a fight like this. “We aren’t taking anymore 143 fights. We will move up to 147,” said Bozy Ennis. The young Ennis had an ice pack on his left hand.
Two judges had it 40-36 and one 39-37. This writer had it 40-36.
In a rematch bantamweight Leroy “Luscious” Davila, 3-0 (1), out of New Brunswick, NJ, had Edgar Torres, 3-4 (0), of Vineland, NJ, on the canvas 3 times with the final one in the second round at 2:03.
Both southpaws scoring well while Davila was very conservative with his punches when all of a sudden out of nowhere he drops Cortes not once but twice. Referee Rosato gave him he the 8 count both times. In the second round Cortes walked right into a lead straight left from Davila putting Cortes on the canvas almost knocked out. Referee Rosato wisely halted it and in no time the ring physician was in the ring administering to Cortes.
Junior welterweight Kenneth “Bossman” Sims, Jr., 7-0 (2), out of Chicago, won a hard fought 6 round decision over Gilbert “Gordo” Venegas, 14-24-5 (8), of E. Moline, IL.
In the opening round Sims goes from orthodox to southpaw having his way with tough veteran Venegas. In the second and third rounds Simms continues to show his skills while Venegas lands an occasional overhand right to the head of Sims. Left hooks by Sims are rocking the iron jawed Venegas.
In the fourth round Sims lands a 3-punch combination and follows with a flurry of punches. In the fifth round Venegas has a small cut along the eyebrow of his left eye. In the sixth and final round Venegas lands his best punch of the fight an overhand right to the head of Simms. This is probably the best round of the fight as both fighters were still throwing leather at the bell!
Judges Gail Jasper, Tom Schreck and Dana Depaolo had it 60-54 as did this writer. Sims was very impressive.
Good looking lightweight Devin “The Dream” Haney, 10-0 (6), out of Las Vegas, defeated southpaw “Mighty” Mike Fowler, 5-3 (2), out of Milwaukees over 8 rounds.
In the opening round Fowler controlled the first half before Haney got his rhythm together and took the second half. In the second and third round Haney unloaded on Fowler who is doing very little in return.
In the fourth Haney is landing 3 punches at a time as the nose of Fowler is bleeding. In the fifth round Haney continued to rock Fowler until referee Rosato wisely halted the fight. ”I fought a good fight especially going to the body,” said Haney. He is one to watch!
In the opening bout a war broke out. Darryl “Dreamking” Bunting, 2-1-2 (1), of Asbury Park, NJ, was stopped by Darryl Gause, 2-0 (1), of Vineland, NJ, in a super middleweight match at 2:14 of the second.
In the opening round it was a slugfest with Bunting having the edge until a right hand from Gause had him out on his feet. It looked like referee Dali might stop it. He gave him a standing count at the bell. In the second round the slugfest continued until once again a Gause right hand drove Bunting across the ring into the ropes Gause jumped on him and referee Dali wisely halted the action.
Ring announcer was Mark Fratto.
PBC on ESPN Preview: Barrios vs. Boschiero, Ramirez vs. Roman
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) series will be televised live on ESPN from the Sun National Bank Center in Trenton, New Jersey.
UFC 200 is also being broadcast on Saturday, but the loss of Jon Jones may lead to more viewers for the free PBC card. It features two prospects with future world title aspirations. Mario Barrios will be competing against Devis Boschiero in an IBF Junior Lightweight eliminator and Eddie Ramirez will face Jessie Roman in the junior welterweight division.
Photo Credit: Jordan Hardy/Premier Boxing Champions
The following is a preview of both televised bouts.
Eddie Ramirez (13-0) vs. Jessie Roman (20-2); Junior Welterweights
Eddie Ramirez has been extremely busy and fought five times in 2015 and once already in 2016. He’s a former Chicago Golden Gloves Champion and was a runner up in the National Golden Gloves Tournament the same year.
His opponent, Jessie Roman, does not have the amateur accomplishments of Ramirez. He fought three times in 2015 and twice in 2014.
Ramirez, at the age of twenty four, is one year younger than Roman. He will also be giving up two inches in height and two inches in reach to his opponent. However, Ramirez has nine stoppage victories in only thirteen bouts while Roman has only nine stoppage victories in twenty two professional bouts.
Neither boxer has faced any serious contenders in their primes. Ramirez has defeated the likes of Osumanu Akaba, Bilal Mahasin, and former world title challenger Cristobal Cruz. Roman’s only notable victory was over Hector Serrano.
Roman does not have many notable wins on his resume, but he does have two glaring losses. His two losses were to Joaquin Chavez, who had a record of 8-13-3 at the time they fought, and to Carlos Mario Sanchez, who had a record of 20-10 at the time they fought.
This is a bout that Eddie Ramirez should win, easily. It will be noteworthy to see if Ramirez can stop Roman, who has never been stopped in his career.
Mario Barrios (15-0) vs. Devis Boschiero (29-4-1); IBF Junior Lightweight Eliminator
Mario Barrios has fought eight times since the start of 2015 and is one of Al Haymon’s most intriguing prospects.
His activity is almost unheard of. He’s a tall fighter for the junior lightweight division and will have a six and a half inch height advantage over Boschiero. He also has a 74” reach, which is large for his division, and will have a six inch reach advantage over Boschiero.
Barrios, at the age of twenty one, is also thirteen years younger than Boschiero.
Barrios has eight stoppage victories on his resume, but he will have to be careful of Boschiero’s power. Boschiero has stopped twenty one of his opponents and won his last two fights by stoppage.
Barrios, at this point in his career, has yet to be seriously tested. His biggest wins have come against the likes of Manuel Vides, Enrique Tinoco, and Eduardo Rivera. A lot of his wins have come against opponents with losing records.
Boschiero previously fought for a world title against Takahiro Ao and lost. His other losses were to Stephen Smith and Romain Jacob, twice. He has defeated the likes of Guillaume Frenois and Ermano Fegatilli. He’s also been very active and fought four times in 2015 and once in 2016.
It should be noted that Boschiero has only fought outside of Europe once, and he lost in that bout to Takahiro Ao. Boschiero has never fought in the United States.
Boschiero is a good, tough veteran for Barrios at this point in his career. Barrios seems to be aware that Boschiero represents a tough fight for him and stated, “All I know about Boschiero is that he’s got a lot of fights and he’s a top contender. I know he’s hungry so I’m not taking him lightly. I’ve seen some tape on him and I know he likes to come forward. Everyone can expect to see a lot of had punches being thrown by both of us. I’m expecting a war.”
However, Barrios’ skill level and his reach and height will be too great for Boschiero to overcome and pull off an upset victory. Barrios should get some rounds in and win a decision victory.