Urango retains title and Cloud becomes champ


boxing31.08.09 – By Ron Scarfone at ringside – At the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida, Seminole Warriors Boxing presented a world championship doubleheader. Both title fights were a matchup of youth versus experience. In the main event, Juan “Iron Twin” Urango of Cooper City, Florida successfully defended his IBF junior welterweight title against Randall “The Knockout King” Bailey of Miami, Florida. Urango won the IBF title for the second time by defeating Herman Ngoudjo of Canada by unanimous decision in January 2009. Prior to this fight against Urango, Bailey was 11-1 with his only loss being a controversial split decision loss to Ngoudjo in Canada. Bailey won the right to fight Urango by defeating Francisco “El Gato” Figueroa by knockout in an eliminator. In the co-main event, Tavoris Cloud of Tallahassee, Florida won the vacant IBF light heavyweight title by unanimous decision over Clinton Woods of Sheffield, England. Both Cloud and Woods had to win eliminators to fight for this title. Cloud defeated Julio Cesar Gonzalez by TKO and Woods won by unanimous decision over Elvir Muriqi.

Bailey was the WBO junior welterweight champion, but that was about a decade ago. Although not an old man at age 34, Bailey faced a 28-year-old champion in the prime of his life in Urango.. Urango’s strategy was to get close enough to Bailey to do damage on the inside while Bailey pawed with the left jab to set up his robust straight right. Bailey failed to capitalize on the opportunities that presented themselves when Urango threw wide hooks. During this time, Bailey should have been throwing and landing his straight right. In the fifth round, a right uppercut to the head staggered Bailey and he almost went down. Bailey was able to come back in the sixth round when Bailey knocked down Urango with a straight right to the head. This punch also cut Urango underneath his right eye. Urango was able to get up because of his iron chin. Since the cut was below Urango’s eye, the blood would not obstruct his vision. However, the swelling from it could.

Urango returned the favor in the ninth round by knocking down Bailey with a straight left to the head. Bailey barely beat the count, but was knocked down again later in the round by a left hook to the head. Urango also knocked down Bailey in the tenth round. In the eleventh round, Bailey was not able to fight back and holding so much that his trainer John David Jackson decided to have the fight stopped. The time of stoppage was 1:51 and Urango won by TKO. Urango retains the IBF junior welterweight title and improves his record to 22-2-1, 17 KOs whereas Bailey falls to 39-7, 35 KOs.

In the co-main event, the 27-year-old Cloud was fighting for his first major world title against the 37-year-old Woods. Woods was fighting for the third time in the United States. In his previous two fights on American soil, Woods lost to Roy Jones Jr. and Antonio Tarver. Woods lost the IBF light heavyweight title to Tarver and was seeking to regain it against Cloud. Cloud fought mostly soft opposition prior to his bout against Gonzalez, but Cloud believed that his speed, strength, and youth would help him to overwhelm the more experienced Woods. Cloud was correct in his prediction as he was busier than the aging Woods. Woods does have a good chin and was never knocked down in the fight. In the sixth round, Cloud landed two right hands in a row to Woods’ head. Woods extended his arms out as if to mean that he was not hurt. Cloud was not fazed and continued outworking Woods in the later rounds. Cloud battered Woods against the ropes in the seventh round. Cloud connected with a big left hook to the head in the eighth round that wobbled Woods, but he managed to survive the round. Cloud continued to have success with his hooks and the crowd chanted “USA” to show their support. Woods showed a champion’s heart and chin, but could not stop Cloud from having a bright future. The fight went into the championship rounds (eleventh and twelfth) with more of the same as Cloud was still energetic and not tired. All three judges scored the fight 116-112 and Cloud won the IBF light heavyweight title by unanimous decision. Cloud should have won by a much wider margin on the judges’ scorecards as he was in complete control of this fight. Cloud remains undefeated and improved his record to 20-0, 18 KOs whereas Woods falls to 42-5-1, 24 KOs.

The undercard had a great matchup between two young undefeated boxers. 21-year-old Prenice “Greatness” Brewer of Cleveland, Ohio faced Michael Jean Louis of Orlando, Florida in the junior welterweight division. Louis’ nickname is “Pretty Boy.” Brewer liked to showboat and stuck out his tongue during round one. The 19-year-old Louis rocked Brewer with a thunderous left hook to the head in the third round, but Brewer stayed on his feet. Louis tried to land the left hook again, but missed against the slick Brewer. Brewer was winning the later rounds with quick flurries. Louis tried to have the same effect with his left hook that he had in round three, but could not land the knockout blow. The judges scored it 79-73, 78-74, and 77-75 in favor of Brewer by unanimous decision. Brewer remains unbeaten and improves his record to 13-0-1, 6 KOs whereas Louis loses for the first time as a pro and falls to 9-1, 8 KOs.

Jonathan “Mantequilla” Gonzalez of Puerto Rico faced Jason Thompson of Brooklyn, New York in the welterweight division. The 20-year-old Gonzalez knocked down the shorter Thompson in the first round with a straight right to the head. Thompson miraculously got up and even fought back valiantly during the round. In the third round, Gonzalez knocked down Thompson again with a left hook to the body. Thompson got up, but the referee waved off the fight at 25 seconds of round three. Gonzalez won by TKO and improved his record to 5-0, 5 KOs whereas Thompson falls to 5-4-1, 4 KOs.

Luis “La Estrella” Franco of Cuba faced Christopher “El Perro” Rivera of Puerto Rico in the featherweight division. Franco is a pummeling machine and knocked down Rivera three times in the first round. The first knockdown was from a straight right to the head. Two left hooks to the body followed by a left hook to the head knocked down Rivera for a second time. A left hook to the head from Franco knocked down Rivera for a third time. Since the three knockdown rule was in effect, the referee waved the fight off at 2:40 of round one. Franco won by TKO and improved his record to 2-0, 2 KOs whereas Rivera falls to 3-2, 3 KOs.

Joel Morales of Puerto Rico faced Robert Campbell of Orlando, Florida in the super middleweight division. This fight proved that records do not always mean that one fighter is better than another. Morales was unbeaten going into this fight at 2-0. Campbell was 3-2-1. Campbell came out fighting furiously in round one. Campbell knocked down Morales twice in the first round. A left hook to the body knocked down Morales for the second time. An enthusiastic Campbell stomped his foot and screamed after his victory. Campbell was also celebrating his 26th birthday which the ring announcer told the spectators. The referee stopped the bout at 1:16 of round one and Campbell won by TKO. Campbell improves his record to 4-2-1, 4 KOs whereas Morales suffers his first loss as a pro and falls to 2-1, 2 KOs.

Rances “The Natural” Barthelemy of Miami, Florida faced Vineash “The Tazmanian Devil” Rungea of London, England in the junior lightweight division. Barthelemy, the brother of pro boxer Yan Barthelemy, dominated this bout. A left hook to the head dropped Rungea. Referee Tommy Kimmons was counting while Rungea looked at him. Rungea was waiting to get up and did so at the count of ten. Because Rungea did not rise before the count of ten, the referee waved off the fight. Rungea was displeased, but Kimmons showed him his hands and that he extended all of his fingers and thumbs. Kimmons was trying to make Rungea understand that a boxer has to be on his feet before the count of ten when knocked down, not at the count of ten. The bout was stopped at 2:40 of the first round and Barthelemy won by TKO. Barthelemy improved his record to 2-0, 2 KOs whereas Rungea falls to 2-14-3, 0 KO.