Peter Manfredo, Jr.: “I feel like I can be in there with anybody and everybody at this weight (168). I’m enjoying boxing now. I’ve put the Lacy fight behind me. I blew that one. We wanted to get this fight out of the way first and now I’ll be calling out a lot of people. I’d love to get Biko if the offer is right. If I have to fight guys like Froch or Pascal to get a world title fight I will. I kept hitting this guy with rights and then got him with the big left. I knew he was going to come out and bang with me but I’m too sharp for him. I kind of got robbed of the knockout, but I’m glad he didn’t get hurt..”
Edwin Rodriguez Wins Friday
Undefeated middleweight Edwin Rodriguez of Worcester, Mass., boosted his record to
8-0 with a one-sided, six-round unanimous decision over lanky Marcus Upshaw Friday night in Lincoln, R.I.
The 23-year-old Rodriguez took all six rounds, winning by scores of 60-54 on the three judges’ scorecards.
Rodriguez did his best work on the inside, pounding the body of Upshaw, who, at 6-foot-3-inches, had a two-inch height advantage.
Rodriguez now has a record of 8-0 with five knockouts while the 28-year-old Upshaw, of Jacksonville, Fla., slips to 8-3 with one knockout.
This is the second straight win over impressive competition for Rodriguez, who turned pro during January. On June 28 in Boston Rodriguez took a unanimous decision over Hector Hernandez, who entered that bout with a mark of 10-2-2.
“This was my second fight in a row against a quality opponent, and I’m excited about how they’ve turned out,” said Rodriguez. “Upshaw came to fight; he was focused; he was ready. But I expect that now. It seems that my opponents are picking up their game a bit when they fight me. I like that, because it just gets me ready for bigger things all the quicker.”
“Edwin followed the game plan perfectly,” said Rodriguez’s trainer, Peter Manfredo Sr. “Edwin showed patience and discipline, elements which will become more and more important when he moves on to even better opponents.”
“Edwin stepped up again, and broke down and beat a good, solid big man,” said Rodriguez’s manager, Larry Army Jr.
Rodriguez, 162 1/2, and Upshaw, 163 1/2, were the special attraction on a card featuring world-ranked Peter Manfredo Jr. against Donny McCrary for the vacant interim North American Boxing Federation super middleweight championship.
Rodriguez, a former two-time national amateur champion, also has a fourth-round technical knockout of Anthony Cannon May 17 in Dorchester, Mass.; a first-round knockout of Michael Birthmark May 3 in Worley, Idaho; a fourth-round technical knockout of Jeffrey Osborne Jr. April 12 in Boston; a one-sided unanimous decision over veteran James North March 28 in Salamanca, N.Y.; a fourth-round knockout of Fitzgerald Johnson Feb. 8 in Boston; and a first-round knockout of Samuel Ortiz Gomez Jan. 26 in Mansfield, Mass.
Rodriguez won the USA Boxing national championship for 2005 and the Golden Gloves national championship for 2006, both at 165 pounds.
Rodriguez, who has lived in Worcester since arriving in the United States from his native Dominican Republic during 1998, considered competing for a spot on the 2008 U.S. Olympic team, but the premature birth of twins, Edwin Jr. and Serena Lynn, changed his priorities. Stephanie Rapa, Edwin’s fiancee and mother of the twins, is a graduate of Holy Cross with a degree in political science.
You may read more about Edwin Rodriguez at his web site: edwinrodriguezboxing.com