Worcester, Mass., lightweight Jamaine Ortiz capped a wild, historic night Saturday at Twin River Casino Hotel, dethroning the previous unbeaten Ricardo Quiroz of Oxnard, Calif., to capture the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) World Youth Lightweight Championship.
The 22-year-old Ortiz, now 10-0, became just the third fighter under the guidance of CES Boxing to capture a WBC Youth Title, joining “Bad” Chad Dawson and Matt Remillard by earning a methodical, 78-74, 78-74, 78-74 unanimous decision victory.
Ortiz took control from the get-go, not letting Quiroz’s height advantage prevent him from boxing effectively on the inside. Ortiz went to the body early and often, fought out of clinches and landed clean, short hooks as Quiroz retreated, winning each of the first six rounds on two of the judges’ scorecards. Quiroz mounted a late comeback as Ortiz’s pace slowed in the seventh and eighth rounds, but with little zip on his punches at that point, Ortiz remained in the driver’s seat and survived the finally rally to capture his first title as a professional. Quiroz drops to 10-1, the first loss of his pro career.
A decorated amateur who advanced to the semifinals of the U.S. Olympic Trials in 2016, Ortiz now joins an exclusive list of current and former WBC Youth world champions, which included pound-for-pound king Canelo Alvarez, Danny Garcia,Jorge Arce, and others.
In the female featherweight main event, New London, Conn., veteran Shelly Vincent (24-2) outboxed Edina Kiss (15-10) of Budapest in a rematch of their 2015 bout, earning a 78-74, 79-73, 77-75 unanimous decision win. Vincent controlled the pace, stalking Kiss for most of the fight, and consistently backed her against the ropes while Kiss trained to land wild hooks and overhands. Vincent dodged most of Kiss’ counters and remained comfortably ahead in the middle rounds, allowing her to establish and maintain her pace.
The heavyweight co-main event was a wild scene with Sicilian heavyweight Juiseppe Cusumano (18-2, 16 KOs) capturing the vacant National Boxing Association (NBA) World Title by seventh-round knockout over California’s Brendan Barrett (7-3-2) in a fight that featured six knockdowns, one fighter getting tossed out of the ring and a melee at the end following the final blow from Cusumano.
With a six-inch height advantage, Cusumano had trouble letting his hands go against the shorter, stockier Barrett, who kept charging, but would unload with one punch, maybe two, at a time and then clinching to avoid Cusumano’s counter. The 6-foot-4 Sicilian finally found his distance and sent Barrett tumbling to the canvas three times in the fourth round, but not without a complaint from Barrett, who felt Cusumano pushed him in the back of the head.
Cusumano eventually sustained a cut on the forehead, which only heightened the intensity as the fight progressed, and the war reached its fever pitch in the fifth when the two became entangled in the middle of the ring and Barrett picked up Cusumano and tossed him through the ropes and onto the scorer’s table. The chaos momentarily unraveled Cusumano, who got caught with an overhand right in the sixth – Barrett’s best punch of the night – and hit the ground halfway through the round.
The shift in momentum was short-lived as Cusumano got his legs back and finally finished the fight for good at the 2:51 mark of the seventh, catching Barrett with a right cross that buckled his opponent’s legs and sent him crashing to the canvas for the fourth time. The referee waved it off, but that was only the beginning and a brawl ensued shortly after the final bell between the respective camps and fans sitting ringside, forcing Twin River security to quiet the storm.
Once the dust settled, Cusumano had his third consecutive win and 16th in his last 17 bouts.
In the first of the three title bouts on the card, undefeated Boston super bantamweight Amanda Pavone (7-0) remained unbeaten with a hard-earned majority decision win over Connecticut’s Marcia Agripino (3-2-1), 77-75, 76-76, 79-73 to capture the vacant New England Title.
The two exchanged blows throughout the fight, which was relatively through four rounds until Pavone began to land the cleaner blows, specifically with her overhand left, over the last half of the bout. Agripino continued to charge, but Pavone began to establish her distance with the jab to control of the fight.
In one of the more exciting bouts on the undercard, Marqus Bates (6-2) of Taunton, Mass., continued his climbed in the welterweight division with a scintillating knockout win over Connecticut rival Jair Ramos (5-3-2) at the 2:46 mark of the third round. Since losing in his professional debut in 2016, Bates has now won six of seven, including two of his last three by knockout.
Pawtucket, R.I., super featherweight Ricky Delossantos (7-0) also preserved his perfect record in his toughest test to date, earning a 59-54 win across the board against Indiana veteran and U.S. Army National Guardsman Javar Jones (7-2). Delossantos controlled the pace and fought his best on the inside, winning the close exchanges with the lightning-fast Jones. Delossantos iced it in the closing seconds, sending Jones to the canvas right before the final bell.
Fighting for the first time in a year, Providence’s Michael Valentin (5-0) remained undefeated with an inspirational 38-38, 40-36, 40-36 majority decision win over tough Philadelphia veteran Christopher Burgos (1-4-1). Valentin, who fights with a colostomy bag due to a rare birth defect, dedicated his comeback fight to the memory of Seven Bridges, the 10-year-old Kentucky boy who committed suicide in January after also being bullied for wearing a colostomy bag.
On the preliminary card, Providence super welterweight Victor Reynoso (3-0, 3 KOs) stunned the crowd with the biggest comeback of the night, rallying from a sure defeat on the scorecards to stop Louisiana’s John Williams (1-1) in the fourth and final round.
Working with a stiff jab and straight right hand that seemed to knock Reynoso off his spot in the early rounds, Williams controlled the pace and lead on all three cards heading into fourth, including two cards in which the judges gave him each of the first three rounds. Midway through the fourth, Reynoso finally closed the distance, backed Williams against the ropes and landed a looping overhand right that sent his opponent crashing to the canvas. Referee Johnny Callas immediately waved it off, awarding the victory to Williams at the 1:51 mark, preserving Reynoso’s perfect record.
Also on the undercard, New York super lightweight Arnold Gonzalez (1-0), a two-time national champion as an amateur, breezed past Virginia’s Stacey Anderson (0-4) to earn a 40-36 unanimous decision win on all three scorecards, and Worcester super lightweight Nicholas Briggs (3-0) remained unbeaten with a 40-35, 40-36, 40-36 win over the durable Andy Aiello (1-2-1) of Bridgewater, Mass. Super welterweight Lamont Powell (3-0) of Providence also kept his perfect record intact, dominating Quebec’s Kenneth Chery (1-2) to earn a 40-36 unanimous decision on all three scorecards.