Welterweight Mark Reyes Jr. Captured the ABF Continental Americas title with a third round stoppage of Mexico’s Juan Garces Saturday, October 6.
“Night of Champions” was promoted by Fire Fist Boxing Promotions and the 11 bout card took place in front of a standing room only crowd at The Coliseum in St. Petersburg, FL.
The card was broadcast live on Fite.TV and featured ringside commentary from Fire Fist Boxing Promotions’ very own Connor “The Kid” Coyle.
With a large group of supporters on hand, Reyes got off to a fast start and buzzed Garces with a hard right cross in the opening stanza. The popular 22-year-old Tampa native had a clear speed advantage and was able to consistently beat Garces to the punch in the second, though Garces did land a few good shots.
At the beginning of round three, Reyes threw a body shot that accidentally landed on Garces’ inner thigh. Garces immediately crashed to the canvas and appeared to be in significant pain. After an extended delay, Graces couldn’t continue and Reyes was awarded a TKO victory.
“It was an accidental low blow but I hit him on the thigh,” Reyes said following the victory. “I hurt him to the body in the second and he tried to use this as an opportunity to quit because he didn’t want to fight.”
Reyes dedicated his victory to the Children’s Cancer Center of Tampa. Team Reyes raised funds for the Children’s Cancer Center by donating all proceeds from fight night merchandise sales.
Reyes is now 8-0 with 6 KO’s while Garces slips to 28-22 (18 KO’s).
Lightweight contender Willian “Babyface” Silva of Plant City, FL by way of Brazil became the ABF Continental Lightweight champion by dominating game Panamanian Jose Forero en-route to a 9th round stoppage. Silva displayed excellent boxing skills and was in complete control during the first eight rounds. In the 9th, Silva decked Forero hard and a follow up barrage forced the stoppage at 1:49.
Silva improves his professional ledger to 26-2 with 15 victories by KO. Forero is 13-8-1 (11 KO’s).
“I’m very pleased with the way Mark and Willian performed,” said Jody Caliguire of Fire Fist Boxing Promotions. “Mark was on his way to a stoppage victory and I truly believe his opponent was looking to pick up a disqualification win by adding some theatrics after being punched on the thigh. Willian put on an absolute clinic and is looking to get right back in with a top opponent in the very near future.”
Bantamweights Avril Mathie of Miami Beach, FL by way of Australia and Dallas, TX’s Samantha Salazar battled to a thrilling six round draw in a match up for the Women’s ABF Continental Americas 118 pound title. In what was without question the fight of the night, Mathie and Salazar fearlessly exchanged punches throughout the contest. After the final bell, both women were met with a round of applause.
Scores were 58-56 Mathie, 58-56 Salazar and 57-57.
Mathie is 2-0-1 with 2 KO’s and Salazar’s record is 5-5-1.
Junior middleweight Ozodbek Aripov of Fort Myers, FL earned a six round shutout victory over tough Miami, FL native Clifford Gray. Aripov, a physical fighter with a crowd friendly style, scored two knockdowns and never stopped moving forward.
All three judges scored the bout 60-52 for Aripov, who is now 4-0 (2 KO’s).
2016 Argentinean Olympian Alberto Palmetta, 9-1 (5 KO’s) stopped veteran Javier Garcia, 8-18-1 (3 KO’s), following the third third of a six round welterweight contest. The confident Palmetta displayed flashy skills and impressive ring generalship, pummeling Garcia from the opening bell.
Fire Fist Boxing Promotions returns to The Coliseum Saturday, February 16 and features the return of Connor Coyle. For more information and updates, please visit Firefistboxing.net, Facebook.com/firefistboxing or follow @Firefistboxing on Instagram.
Super Flyweights: Crystal Hoy (6-8-4, 3 KO’s – Las Vegas, NV) TKO3 Noemi Bosques (11-12-3, 2 KO’s – St. Petersburg, FL)
Junior Welterweights: Joseph Fernandez (8-3-3, 1 KO – St. Petersburg, FL) UD6 Tobias Green (7-3, 2 KO’s – West Palm Beach, FL)
Heavyweights: Hector Hodge (2-3 – Miami, FL) DQ1 Jose Medina (4-1, 1 KO – Lake Wales, FL)
Welterweights: Ramon De La Paz (5-0, 2 KO’s – Tampa, FL) UD6 Larry Yanez (4-11-2 – Miami, FL)
Junior Lightweights: Antonio Moran (1-0, 1 KO – Tampa, FL) KO1 Benny Rodriguez Jr. (0-2, Miami, FL)
Light Heavyweights: Marcos Escudero (5-0, 4 KO’s – Buenos Aires, Argentina) TKO1 Brian Stevens (1-6, 1 KO – Marathon, FL)