The first two rounds saw Cruz landing punches but without much snap, leading Carrasquillo to taunt the younger fighter and after two rounds, it looked like we might have a good scrap on our hands. Round three was fought mainly in close quarters with Cruz putting more starch in his punches and looking to wear down Carrasquillo by working the body.
Cruz initially backed Carrasquillo to the ropes in round four but soon the combatants took their familiar position in the center of the ring going toe-to-toe. This time, Cruz was starting to put his punches together and landing combinations on the slower Carrasquillo. The fifth round started in the same vein but then saw Cruz begin using more movement and speed to set up his punches. The fight was still competitive but leaning in Cruz’s favor.
The sixth round started much the same until Cruz planted a solid right hook to the ribs, causing Carrasquillo to turn and walk the opposite way. Cruz followed and landed a shot to the head and body before Carrasquillo took a knee and barely beat referee Steve Smoger’s count. Upon continuation of the action, Carrasquillo blocked two light punches from Cruz before looking at Smoger and signaling that he was finished.
The perfect placement of Cruz’s right hook to the ribs of Carrasquillo has caused many to believe the Carrasquillo suffered a rib injury with the blow; that is most likely the case. It also must be noted that Carrasquillo was back down to the welterweight limit after upsetting Denis Douglin at 154 pounds. After that fight, Carrasquillo told Maxboxing just how difficult making the 147-pound limit had become and hoped to continue fighting at the higher junior middleweight limit. It must be taken into consideration how drained Carrasquillo may have been entering this fight.
That being said, Ronald Cruz now must be considered a bona fide prospect at welterweight and deserves a lot of attention as he moves forward.
Philadelphia welterweight Raymond Serrano is now scheduled to appear on the televised portion of next week’s ESPN2 “Friday Night Fights.” His opponent will be Daniel Sostre, 11-3-1 (4), of Highland, NY. After early losses in his career, Sostre enters the bout on a 9-0-1 run; however, he has not faced the level of competition that would lead anyone to believe he will be much of a threat to the 15-0 (8) Serrano.
GoFightLive’s Marc Abrams told Maxboxing that Serrano has been training in Puerto Rico with longtime Ivan Calderon trainer Felix Pintor. It will interesting to see if Serrano can maintain his game plan and discipline throughout the fight and not allow himself to get drawn into a fight at close range. When Serrano uses his excellent jab and patience to set up his punches, he shows the skills that could take him far.
…Also in Philly
This Friday, the New Palladium in Philadelphia hosts a night of boxing featuring undefeated featherweight Coy Evans, 10-0-1 (2), facing an opponent yet to be named. Also on the card will be up-and-comers junior welterweight Julian Williams, 6-0-1 (4), and junior welterweight Tyrone Crowley Jr. making his pro debut.
Overall, they put together a pretty decent card for a club show.
DC’s Seth Mitchell and Gary Russell Jr. to Make HBO Debuts
DC prospects Seth Mitchell and Gary Russell Jr. are both a huge step closer to making their HBO debuts in coming weeks. After discussions for an August 27th fight between Mitchell and Chazz Witherspoon broke down, the name Tony Grano was floated around but nothing really came of that. Now it appears Mitchell’s opponent on the Marcos Maidana-Robert Guerrero card will be Mike Mollo of Illinois, whose biggest win coming in 2006 was over Kevin McBride. Since then, Mollo has dropped decisions to Andrew Golota and Jameel McCline in 2008, with only two bouts since then, coming off a draw last August versus Gary Gomez.
Mollo should give Mitchell some much needed rounds but Mitchell’s size advantage and sharp left jab should work to wear Mollo down, allowing Mitchell to earn a fourth or fifth round stoppage. They are still dotting the I’s and crossing the T’s in the contract but it looks like a pretty sure bet this fight will happen.
Featherweight Russell Jr. seems poised to step onto the big stage in a big way in 2012 and our own Ryan Maquiñana first reported Tuesday night that Russell would likely face the UK’s Paul Truscott on the Amir Khan-Zab Judah HBO card. This would be a nice step for Russell; Truscott is four inches taller, a technically sound fighter but holds very little power, having just two knockouts on his 17-2 record. So Russell will be little danger of getting beat, yet should face the best pure boxer thus far in his career. It will be interesting to see how his power translates in the ring with more experienced fighters.
Baltimore/Washington: United Boxers Set for Third Show in Four Months
With both the Ballroom Boxing series and Baltimore Boxing promoter Jake Smith focusing their attention on amateur boxing these days, the DC/Baltimore Beltway region was in need of a promoter that could host steady shows. That void is being filled nicely by Chris Middendorf and his United Boxers promotional entity. After hosting shows near Baltimore in both April and May, United Boxers will host its first DC fight card at the DC Star night club on Saturday July 16th.
The card features a host of undefeated local prospects including: light heavyweight Alexander Johnson, 11-0 (4), welterweight Emmanuel Taylor, 12-0 (9), Dale Robeson-El, 6-0 (2), Venroy July, 4-0 (3), and Alantez Fox, 4-0 (3). Also featured will be featherweight Thomas Snow, 14-1 (9), after recording a sensational knockout over Thomas Franks at the DC Star club in April.
Paul Williams Returns
I will be posting a story about Paul Williams and his return later this week and Atlantic City is host to a very good card of boxing Saturday night. However, the card does not feature prominently in this report because with the exception of Williams, East Coast fighters are not featured. The undercard will see the return of Denis Douglin after the highly-touted prospect’s knockout loss to Doel Carrasquillo in February but other than that, this is a made-for-HBO night of boxing.