By J.D. Vena at ringside
MANCHESTER, NH – At last night’s 10th annual ‘Fight To Educate’ card at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, NH, unbeaten 2008 Olympian Demetrius “The Cape Verdean Assassin” Andrade of Providence, RI, gave 2-time world challenger, Saul “Baby” Duran a painful reminder to drop out of the “school of hard knocks,” following last night’s one-sided beating. Duran, 157, of Cuidad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, has been on the losing end down the stretch of his long career whose best days were competing at the 135 limit. Andrade, 156 ¼, spent little time feeling out his ripe opponent as he had in his previous win over a month ago, against Contender Season II winner, Grady Brewer. From the opening round, Andrade punished Duran with head-turning right hooks from his southpaw stance and didn’t let up until Duran retired on his stool after the third round.
The win lifted Andrade’s record to 15-0 with 10 KO’s and was more of a showcase to the local New Hampshire following who lately haven’t had the opportunity to see future world class talent in their neck of the woods as often as they would like. Duran fell to 38-19-2 with 31 KO’s.
Another future contender, Danny “Boy” O’Connor of Framingham, MA scored a rare 1st round knockout of Jamal Del Cid of Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico. O’Connor, 145, the smooth-boxing southpaw and 2008 Olympic alternate, jumped all over Del Cid at the opening bell and finished Del Cid with a right hook to the body and straight left to the head. O’Connor, now 15-1 with 4 KO’s, was coming off his first loss as a professional, an 8-round decision loss to unbeaten prospect Gabriel Bracero in a live bout on ShowBox this past April. It was O’Connor’s first bout under the tutelege of heralded boxing trainer and former world title challenger, Ronnie Sheilds of Houston.
In the co-feature, Tilton, NH’s Jose “Stinger” Medina showed once again that his right hand is becoming a dangerous weapon for his opponents to defend. After some earlier disappointments in his career to world rated fighters, Elvin Ayala and Matthew Hatton, Medina has enjoyed a big 2011, thanks to his preferred punch. After a competitive two minutes with 1992 Olympic Bronze medalist Anibel Acevedo of San Juan, PR, Stinger, 161 ½, stung the veteran with a series of straight rights that dropped him between Medina’s legs. Acevedo, 162 ½, managed to beat the count which fortunately ended at the end of the first. Acevedo elected not to be swarmed in round 2 by the energized Medina who last month salvaged an 8-round draw with former jr. middleweight champion, Joachim Alcine. Medina is now 15-9-1 with 7 KO’s.
New Hampshire featherweight Dan Powers, 121, (4-0, 2 KOs) remained unbeaten within a hard four-round shutout over Luis Rosario, 129 1/2, of Springfield, MA.
Aggressive welterweight Chris Gilbert of Claremont, NH improved to 2-0 with 2 KOs when he landed an Erick Morales-style right upper cut to the jaw of Noel Garcia in the first round. Gilbert, 151 1/4, who was coming off an impressive debut performance, a 2nd round stoppage of MMA veteran, Luis Felix, impressed his “Life Free or Die” neighbors when he feined with an overhand right but turned it into a perfectly placed uppercut.
Former 2-time heavyweight champion, John “The Quiet Man” Ruiz, who has been in town since he opened his new gym in Medford, MA this past Saturday, as well as former heavyweight icon, “Gentleman” Gerry Cooney were in attendence from the earlier pre-fight dinner and auction. Proceeds from the 10th annual Fight To Educate will benefit SEE Science Center (www.see-sciencecenter.org), The Bobby Stephens Fund for Education (www.stepheneducationfund.com), and St. Joseph Community Services/Meals on Wheels (www.mealsonwheelsnh.org).
Last Night’s results:
Jose Medina (15-9-1, 8 KOs), Tilton, NH WTKO2 (3:00) Anibel Acevedo (13-8-1, 11 KOs), San Juan Puerto Rico
Demetrius Andrade (15-0, 10 KOs), Providence, RI WTKO3 (3:00) Saul Duran (38-19-2, 31 KOs), Cuidad Juarez, Chichuahua, Mexico
Chris Gilbert (2-0, 1 KO), Windsor, VT TKO1 (1:33) Noel Garcia (2-12-1, 1KO), Springfield, MA
Danny O’Connor (15-1, 4 KOs), Framingham, MA WTKO1 (1:20) Jamal Del Cid (7-6, 3 KOs), Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico
Dan Powers (4-0, 2 KOs), Claremont, NH (40-36, 40-36, 40-36) Luis Rosario (4-16, 2 KOs), Springfield, MA