Former two-division world champion Jose “Sniper” Pedraza (29-3, 14 KOs) scored an eighth round TKO over previously unbeaten Julian “Hammer Hands” Rodriguez (21-1, 14 KOs) in the junior welterweight co-feature on the Stevenson-Nakathila card Saturday night at The Theater at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas. Pedraza really was a sniper on this night, picking Rodriguez apart with precision shots. Rodriguez remained on his stool after round eight.
“My experience was too much for him,” said Pedraza. “I was hungrier than him, and he was just another obstacle in my journey to become a three-division world champion. That is my goal…as the fight went on, I could see him weakening, and I took advantage.”
“I want all the big names at 140 pounds. With this performance, I sent a message to those big names. The ‘Sniper’ is on the hunt. I want to make history for Puerto Rico.”
At the time of the stoppage, Pedraza was up 77-75 on all three cards.
In his first bout in more than 18 months, junior lightweight Tyler McCreary (16-2-1, 7 KOs) was upset by veteran spoiler Manuel Rey Rojas (21-5, 6 KOs) in an eight-rounder. Scores were 79-73, 80-72, 80-72.
Unbeaten junior welterweight John “El Terrible” Bauza (15-0, 6 KOs) scored a spectacular second round KO over Christon Edwards (12-3, 6 KOs). Bauza dropped Edwards at the end of round one. Two more quick knockdowns in round two ended it. Time was :40.
Unbeaten 18-year-old welterweight Xander Zayas (9-0, 7 KOs) scored a third round TKO over “Lethal” Larry Fryers (11-4, 4 KOs). Zayas rocked Fryers in round three and got a referee’s stoppage with a barrage of punches. Time was 1:02.
In a battle of undefeated junior lightweights, Bryan Lua (8-0, 3 KOs) won a six round unanimous decision over Frevian Gonzalez (4-1, 1 KO). Scores were 58-56, 60-54, 60-54.
Middleweight Troy “Transformer” Isley moved to 2-0, 1 KO, winning by fourth round TKO against LaQuan Evans (4-2, 2 KOs). Bizarre stoppage by referee Russell Mora with 34 seconds left in the bout. Evans wasn’t hurt at all.
Welterweight Kasir “Mazzi” Goldston (3-0, 1 KO) outpointed Maurice Anthony (3-2, 3 KOs) in a four-rounder. 40-36 3x.
Welterweight Jahi Tucker (4-0, 2 KOs) outpointed Ysrael Barboza (3-2-1, 3 KOs) in a four-rounder. 40-36 3x.