Amanda Serrano stayed busy and winning, with a battle against Erika Cruz atop the Matchroom card at the Hulu Theater at MADISON SQUARE GARDEN on Saturday night. Serrano in this battle of volume heavy lefties, for all the viable crowns at featherweight, earned a UD10 victory against a resolute volume puncher, who wasn't put off by her own blood covering her face. In what was billed as a sold out mini arena, the judges gave the nod to Serrano–the scores were 98-92, 98-92, 97-93.
Serrano got greeted by rival Katie Taylor, and they told the watchers that they'd be doing a rematch fight, in Ireland, date and specifics and all to come. (Read this recap of the first Taylor vs Serrano battle)
The Mexican challenger (15-1, 3 KOs entering), a lefty, looked immobile in the first against Serrano, who knows to get busy right away because two minutes goes by quickly. The 32 year old Cruz had some luck in the second, they stood center ring and whacked at each other, plenty of those throws to the body. A left strafed Cruz as she readied her own left, after a jab. It did’t stop her from throwing for long, though.
In the third, Cruz looked repetitive, she’d dip and rip, rinse n repeat, not alter the rhythm. Then a cut formed on Cruz’ forehead—no, higher on the scalp— started to seep. Replays DAZN showed a nasty head clash.
In the fourth, Cruz stayed the busier fighter, she had a volume edge much of the time, but Serrano’s crisp shots kept landing too. To round five—same work rate from the battlers. The blood from the cut re-formed and Cruz looked a bit weary, and be-splattered, as she got the minute break.
In the sixth, we saw Cruz put her head down and kept on tossing. Amanda Serrano stayed calm as per usual, didn’t waste motion with her feet, and then had Cruz in deep trouble. She was wobbled, bad, and fought the last minute of the round on adrenaline. In round seven, Cruz actually roared back some. There was now blood on Serranos’ face, was that from Cruz? The Serrano left hook again rattled Cruz’ brain, but she plowed ahead. In the eighth it was more of that same, at a slightly lower rate for Cruz, who kept on wiping blood from her scalp away from her eyes.
Cruz actually battled her corner, telling them to pipe down, at various times. In the ninth, Cruz did the same—she’d throw a jab, or a hook, and follow with a right, and then maybe two or three after that. The cut got re-opened after 30 seconds. The went through the tenth, and to the cards.
Richardson Hitchins Gets It Done In Matchroom Debut
Richardson Hitchins, recently signed to Brit presence Eddie Hearn, wants to be in the mix when people discuss the top talent at 140. He got a chance to make an impact on his profile with a bout against John Bauza, a Jersey/Puerto Rican, on Saturday night. Hitchins knew a KO would send a sharp message, but he settled for a UD 10, 100-88 times three, as Bauza (17-0 entering) showed admirable resolve.
The Brookkyner, who entreated at 15-0, dropped Bauza in round four and an iffy one in the first.The clash main evented the Madison Square Arden Hulu Theater, and Wss promoted by Hearn’s Matchroom.
The Hitchins corner told their guy to turn it up, step it up when Bauza started fading. His right eye puffed and docs looked hard at it after round seven. The lefty Bauza threw some last gasp offense in the eighth, and Hitchins stayed calm. Too calm? It could be argued, Bauza looked worse for the water, ready to absorb more. But Hitchins didn’t ramp it up. Trainer Lenny Wilson reminded him that people like stoppages.
In the ninth, we saw more from Bauza, who had a moment but then got whacked around badly at 1:55. He survived that and more. Hitchins saw docs look extra hard at the eye before the tenth began. Bauza, to his credit, hung tough. The New York athlete tried to end it in the tenth, but also stayed defensively aware.
130 pound ace Alycia Baumgardner received a solid and stiff test from Elhem Mekhaled, from France, who held up and hung in, to that final bell.
After ten rounds, the super skilled King Promotions boxer got the UD. She had to stay busy, and focused, because Mekhaled got a second wind after getting buzzed. She held tough, and kept coming at Baumgardner. Knockdowns in the fourth, it looked like the French fighter would get rolled over. Nope; she earned points for refusing to buckle.