Local favorite Rocky Marzon remains undefeated
By J.R. Jowett at ringside
As if he wasn’t already hyperactive in putting on boxing shows great and small, promoter/matchmaker Marshall Kauffman (Kings Promotions) teamed up with the czar of Scranton-area boxing for decades, Doug “All Nite” Long (Long Productions) for a pro-am on 6/1/19.
The alignment it is hoped will bolster local boxing, which simmers, grows hot, and simmers again in cycles as it has for decades. Their inaugural drew a full house of about 700 at Genetti Manor in Dickson City, the focal point of area boxing in the contemporary era. The card featured both amateur and pro bouts in a worthy effort to develop the game from the ground up, while most major promoters do no such thing but merely leech off the benefits created by grass-roots promotions like this. The crowd-pleasing card had good action in every bout, with no bums quitting. Madra Clay was timekeeper and Bob the Hammer ring announcer.
The main event was a developmental bout for local hero “Rocky” Marzan, 126, Scranton/Las Vegas, 12-0 (9), in a scheduled six with Christian Esquivel, 124 ½, Temoaya, MX, 30-19-1 (23).
Despite tons of experience, the visitor had won only once in his last 11 bouts. He was gone in 2:31 of round two. Nobody minded. Much bigger and fit against the emaciated-looking Esquivel, Marzan commanded the action. But in the first, he picked his punches and sized up the situation.
In the second, Rocky went full tilt with both hands. The diminutive Esquivel tried to fight back but had nothing with which to hold Rocky off. Getting battered freely and fading back while visibly weakening, Christian was rescued from the lions by referee Gary Rosato (all bouts).
It was a slow but rugged and wearying struggle in an all-southpaw pairing between Emilio Salas, 209, Yonkers, 6-3-1 (3), and Nicoy Clarke, 207, Jersey City, 2-3, six. Clarke wanted trench warfare on the inside and came in low, but launched haymakers before getting into range. This made it easy for Emilio to pop him back with short punches before tying him up. Action escalated by steps throughout. By the third, Nicoy was starting to close the gap and punch inside, but a sharp double right hook by Salas drove him back and set him up for a mini rally by Emilio.
Undaunted, Clarke burst out for round four with a crude attack, but lost steam, though probably not before stealing the round. The fifth was Nicoy’s best, as he kept boring in while the tiring Salas was doing more clinching than punching. But Emilio bounced back in a bruising final round, jolting the aggressive Clarke with a solid right and then taking advantage to build a lead. Justin Rubenstein scored 57-57, but the scores of Marc Werlinsky and Adam Friscia were a little sharper, 58-56, giving Salas a hard-earned but deserved majority win.
Nobody minded a bit (except maybe the loser’s corner) when a scheduled four lasted only 24 seconds. It was 24 seconds of a Marine invasion! Jonathan Torres, 119, Bethlehem, managed his first knockout in four wins, over Haziz Self, 118 ½, Phila., 0-2. The two came out in high gear, the taller Self rattled off a sharp combo, and then the compact favorite exploded, driving him to the ropes with a two-handed assault. A rib roasting stood Haziz straight up against the strands like a target in a gallery, where a booming right and crushing left hook stiffened him while still standing. Haziz crashed face down on the canvas, with Rosato waving it over immediately. Though brief, the explosive drama was a crowd pleaser.
An awkward contest, but with plenty of action that fans enjoyed, was the opening four between local favorite Devin McMaster, 159, Allentown, 1-4, and Brent Oren, 159, Harrisburg, 1-1. The lanky and loose limbed southpaw Oren employed a reckless and casual style, fighting with hands down and making full use of a long reach. After a bewildered first, the stalking, flat-footed McMaster applied pressure and got inside enough to edge the second. But Oren nailed it down with a big rally starting the third, when he put punches together instead of one at a time.
McMaster couldn’t get out of the way of the long shots or answer back from that range. Oren clowned his way through the final round and won the unanimous decision, a shutout by Rubenstein and 39-37 from the others.
In a rarity, a Masters bout dominated the amateur portion and brought in many of the fans. But David Edwards, Bloomsburg Boxing, stopped local hero Nick D’Amico, Irish BC (Scranton), at the end of the first of a 201+ contest. It was a slugfest while it lasted, but the favorite ran out of gas and dropped.
Other amateur results:
159 Sr – Thomas Gibson, Irish BC, dec Anthony Muta, Irish BC, 3.
123 Sr – Stephen Caple, Welsh Road Warriors (Scranton), dec Geovonie Fuentes, Show Stoppers
201 Sr – Patrick Zuber, Show Stoppers, RSC3 Corey Schuster, Irish BC.
201+ Sr – Angel Ramirez, Star City Bxg (Reading), RSC2 Jordan O’Hearn, Irish BC.
201+ Sr – Gabriel Hernandez, YO.K.O (Yonkers), dec Joseph Cawley, Irish BC, 3.
185 Sr – Matthew Feldman, Welsh Road Warriors, dec Hector Miranda, Star City Bxg, 3.