By Kurt Wolfheimer at ringside
Jaime “Little James” Arboleda (16-1, 13 KOs) survived a knockdown in the tenth round to pull out a razor-thin split decision victory over Jayson “La Maravilla” Velez (29-6-1, 21 KOs) in a WBA world super featherweight eliminator on Saturday night at the PPL Center, Allentown, Pennsylvania.
Arboleda appeared to take control in rounds 5 through seven with heavy hooks, but Velez wouldn’t back down and countered well. Velez rocked Arboleda in the tenth. Velez seemed to know he needed a knockout in the twelfth and final round. He almost got his wish as he dropped Arboleda with a five-punch combination. Arboleda was in bad shape as Velez continued to bang away. Arboleda held several times as Velez continued the onslaught, but the bell sounded before Velez could land a last big shot. One judge saw the bout 115-112 for Jayson Velez, but was overruled as the other two officials saw it 114-113 for Jaime Arboleda, giving him the split nod.