Report and photos by Bob Ryder
Alante Green was able to withstand a late charge by Stivens Bujaj in the main event Friday night at the Cherry Valley Lodge Event Center in the Columbus suburb of Newark, Ohio winning the eight round contest by unanimous decision on scores of 78-74 x 2 and 77-75. Green’s margin of victory in the entertaining scrap was established early as Bujaj took several rounds to get untracked.
Green was a shade quicker throughout but Bujaj hung in the whole way cutting Green along his right eye early on although the cut was never a factor. Bujaj came on strong in the second half of the fight to make it close and thought he had done enough to pull it out. He and Green jawed at each other at the fights’ conclusion and thankfully cooler heads prevailed in keeping them separated after the decision was announced.
With the win Cleveland’s Green advances to (8-0-1, 5 KOs) and picks up the WBC USNBC Cruiserweight belt. Bujaj hails from New York City and with the loss drops to (17-4-1, 11 KOs). Promoter Troy Speakman might do well to consider matching them again as both boxers seemed to feel like they still had some scores to settle.
In the co-main event junior middleweight DeShawn Prather impressed in defeating Ben Schlater over the six round duration. The judges saw it 58-55 x 2 and 59-54. Kansas City, Missouri’s Prather (11-1, 2 KOs) scored a knockdown in the second round and utilized effective movement and counters throughout. Ohio’s Schlater (5-2-3, 2 KOs) never stopped trying but couldn’t trap Prather long enough to turn the tide.
Scheduled four round bouts made up the rest of this entertaining night of boxing.
Heavyweights Travis Davis and Dennis Vance went the distance with hometown Davis winning the decision with scores of 40-35 x 3 to stay undefeated at (5-0, 2 KOs). Vance tried to land the home run shot but after suffering a knockdown in the first round was rendered ineffective in falling to (1-3, 1 KO). Vance hails from South Branch, MI.
Another heavyweight bout saw Ravon Baxter score a KO at 1:57 of round two over Troy Bolin. After a slow first round Baxter went to work knocking Bolin down twice in the second round with Bolin unable to beat referee Ken Miliner’s count on his second trip to the canvas. Both fighters were making their pro debuts.
Cleveland’s Jerrell Hodge made his pro debut a success as he won convincingly over Columbus’ Cory Delaney (5-11-3, 1 KO) in a junior middleweight contest. Using uppercuts and body punches, Hodge won easily by scores of 40-36 x 3.
Junior welterweights opened the night with Skylar Bray coming from way behind to land a booming right hand against Emmanuel Acherim in the final round that staggered Acherim badly. Bray jumped all over Acherim pounding him on the ropes forcing referee Miliner to make the save at :25 of the round. Both were making their pro debuts.