By Jeff Zimmerman and David Finger at ringside
In the third bout of the night super middleweight prospect Alexis Espino, 165, put on a boxing clinic against Delvecchio Savage, 163.6, of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, winning a lopsided six round unanimous decision by a score of 60-54 (once) and 59-55 (twice).
Although Savage didn’t come into the fight with a flashy record he did come in with a reputation of possessing a decent punch (having won all three of his victories by knockout). He also had a reputation for possessing an above average chin (all five of his losses came by decision). Savage also held undefeated prospect Louis Hernandez to a draw back in April and was seen as a legitimate test for the 20-year old prospect. Espino clearly respected his opponent and boxed cautiously behind the left jab in the first three rounds before slowly incorporating the lead right hand in round four. By the end of round four Espino was boxing with more aggression and pressuring his durable and crafty opponent and by round five he began to tee off on Savage. Still, although Espino would occasionally land an impressive shot it was not enough to seriously hurt Savage, and he was able to survive all six rounds without hitting the canvas. Espino improves to 6-0, 4 KOs. Savage sees his record slip to 3-6-1, 3 KOs. The referee was Neil Young.
In the second bout of the night undefeated junior middleweight Luis Ruiz Acevedo, 153, dominated Shawnee, Oklahoma’s Dennis “Pawnee Express” Knifechief, 154.8, stopping the 30-year old journeyman at 1:44 of round three. To his credit, Knifechief had a strategy that involved boxing behind the southpaw jab and coming in with lead overhand lefts. But Ruiz Acevedo was simply to fast and talented and easily frustrated every Knifechief offense with solid left hooks to the chin and right hands. By round three referee Rosario Solis saw enough after a picture perfect counter buckled Knifechief. Solis waved the fight off, awarding the victory to the California native, who now sees his record improve to 7-0, 5 KOs. Knifechief, who has now lost four straight fights to undefeated prospects, falls to 12-12-1, 7 KOs.
Undefeated flyweight Jesse Rodriguez, III, kicked off one of the most anticipated boxing events to hit the Lone Star State in years and in the process showed that he was a world class prospect in his own right as he dominated the gritty Marco “El Lobito” Sustaita, 110.8, stopping him at 1:10 of the eighth round. After a slow feeling out round in the opening round Lobito tried to up the pressure in round two. But by round three Rodriguez had taken control of the fight behind his rapid-fire combinations to the head and body. By round four the fight had turned into a boxing clinic put on by Rodriguez. There was no knockdowns but Lobito was visibly hurt when referee Lawrence Cole waved off the fight. With the win Rodriguez improves to 11-0, 7 KOs while Sustaita drops to 12-3-1, 10 KOs.