Pires dominates Leija!
By: Mark Vaz at ringside
Photography by Emily Harney
Jason “Schoolboy” Pires (22-3, 9 KOs), an alternate on the 1996 US Olympic Team, continued his successful comeback after nearly a six-year absence from the ring with a unanimous decision win over veteran Louie Leija (21-10-1, 15 KOs) in an eight-round welterweight contest this past Friday in the main event of Jimmy Burchfield’s “Mayflower Madness” at the Memorial Hall in Plymouth, MA.
Pires, a full-time police officer, began his professional career with signs of becoming a world champ, winning the USBA super bantamweight title in his twelfth bout (August 1998).
Close decision losses to Arthur Johnson (Oct 1999) and Oscar Leon (Nov 2001), followed by a ninth round TKO loss to Rocky Juarez (Feb 2003) led to his retirement until last year, when Pires decided to give boxing one last chance. A decision win over journeyman Frank Houghtaling in November of last year paved the way to his showdown with Leija.
Taking a round to find his rhythm, the fast-handed Pires outboxed a game and determined Leija. Round after round Pires used his superior skills to box circles around Leija. Leija - who has been in the ring with former champions such as Derrick Gainer, Jesus Chavez and Floyd Mayweather - had no answer for the quicksilver hand and foot speed of Pires. After eight highly entertaining rounds, the judges scored the contest 80-72, 80-72 and 80-71.
Outstanding combination punching and movement showed that Pires still has considerable talent and ability.
DELGADO WINS HOMECOMING!
Paul Delgado (20-8-1, 4 KOs), originally from Massachusetts, presently fighting out of Atlanta, Georgia, returned home to take a majority decision over late substitute Sebastian Hamel (10-17-1, 1 KO) in a six-round welterweight bout. Hamel boxed well, using his awkward southpaw style and speed to keep the aggressive Delgado off balance most of the fight. The scorecards read 60-54, 58-56 and 57-57 for Delgado.
FAN FAVORITE LOPES TRIUMPHANT!
Manuel Lopes (5-0-1, 1 KO), the man responsible for bringing Classic Entertainment Sports to the city of Plymouth, thrilled his local fans winning a unanimous decision over the awkward Eric Clinton (0-5-5) in a four round super middleweight bout. Lopes chased his opponent from post-to-post but Clinton was contentwith lunging in and holding the popular hometown favorite. Lopes won a comfortable decision with the scores tallying 40-35, 38-37 and 38-37.
WEISBERG WINS COMEBACK!
Returning after a two year absence from the ring, Mical Weisberg (2-0, 1 KO) of Stoughton, MA survived a few shaky moments to pull out a majority decision win over Pete Guthy (1-6-2) in a light heavyweight four-rounder. The scores were 39-37, 39-37 and 38-38
REIS GETS REVENGE!
Kali Reis (1-0, 1 KO) used steady pressure and a sustained body attack to outwork the taller Alexsandra Magdziak Lopes over four rounds to capture an unanimous decision in a jr middleweight encounter. All of the judges saw the fight at: 39-37. Lopes was making her pro debut. Ironically, Reis had lost 3 out of 4 bouts to Lopes when they fought as amateurs.
NEVSKY DOMINATES DEETS
Andrey Nevsky (6-0, 3 KOs), originally from Russia,, now residing in East Boston, preserved his undefeated record with a one-sided beating over game but overmatched William Deets (2-10, 1 KO), scoring knockdowns in the second and third rounds en route to a unanimous decision in a super middleweight four-rounder. All of the scores read 40-34.
“Mayflower Madness” was promoted by Jimmy Burchfield of Classic Entertainment and Sports. Friday’s card was the first event in a series of four shows scheduled for 2009 at Memorial Hall in Plymouth, MA.
Burchfield was pleased to see that the almost capacity crowd cheered the action throughout the evening. “We promised to give the fans true entertainment value and we did,” stated the promoter. “I am looking forward to returning to Plymouth Hall.”
Charles “Babe” Wood was posthumously inducted into the CES Ring of Honor during a special ceremony. The late Wood trained world champions Rocky Marciano, Sonny Liston and Paul Pender, among the most notable fighters he coached and advised for so many years. Promoter Jimmy Burchfield, president of CES, established the CES Ring of Honor in 2005 to honor inductees for their special accomplishments and contributions to New England boxing.
“We lost Babe last year and everyone dearly misses him, especially in this area where he lived,” Burchfield said. “‘Babe’ embodies everything that I envisioned for inductees when we started the CES Ring of Honor and we’re delighted to honor ‘Babe’ and his family.”
Charter members include five-time world champion Vinny “The Pazmanian Devil” Paz, former WBA and WBC welterweight title-holder Marlon “Magic Man” Starling, and three-time The Ring Fighter of the Year (2001-2003) participant “Irish” Micky Ward. Other CES Ring of Honor members include the late, great Rocky Marciano, former 3-time world champion “El Gallo” Jose Antonio Rivera, world light heavyweight contender “Iceman” John Scully, famed Connecticut trainer Johnny Dukes, 2008 U.S. Olympian Demetrious “Boo Boo” Andrade, Gary “Tiger” Balletto, and 4-time national amateur champion Bobby Harris.