Vermont junior middleweight Chis Gilbert (12-1, 9 KOs) edged previously undefeated Steven Matthews (4-1, 2 KOs) by way of an eight-round decision in Thursday’s main event on the 13th annual Fight To Educate Pro-Am show at Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire.
Matthews, fighting out of Greensboro (NC), held a decisive advantage early in the fight until Gilbert caught him with a powerful right that sent him to the canvas for the lone knockdown of the evening. Matthews barely beat the count and was saved by the bell. The two fighters went back and forth the remainder of the fight in which the single knockdown was the difference (76-75 on all three judges’ scorecards.
In the co-feature, Whitman (MA) super middleweight Mark “The Italian Bazooka” DeLuca (11-0, 8 KOs) scored a technical knockout victory, decking Gundrick “Sho-Gun” King (19-12, 11 KOs) with a vicious body shot. Referee Dave Greenwood stopped the fight at 2:39 of the third round. DeLuca, who is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran who was a machine gunner in Afghanistan, had hammered King with a relentless body attack from the opening bell.
Fight To Educate, presented in part this year by Matrix Aerospace, is a unique charity event that combines a love of boxing with the vision of assisting children and seniors in need who without fundraisers like this could be ‘down for the count.’ During the past 12 years, Fight To Educate has raised more than $750,000 in donations benefiting local New Hampshire non-profit organizations.
This year’s attending “Legends” were former world middleweight champion Vito Antuofermo (50-7-2, 21 KOs), world heavyweight title challengers Chuck “Bayonne Bleeder” Wepner (25-14-2, 17 KOs) and Earnie “The Acorn” Shavers (74-14-1, 68 KOs), and two-time World Boxing Association heavyweight champion John “The Quietman” Ruiz (44-9-1, 30 KOs)
Portland (ME) super middleweight Russell “The Haitian Sensation” Lamour (10-0, 5 KOs) kept his undefeated record intact when Dennis Ogboo (7-8, 6 KOs) was unable to answer the bell for the third round.
Popular junior welterweight Brandon “The Cannon” Berry (7-0, 5 KOs), fighting out of West Forks, Maine, remained unbeaten with a first round stoppage of Theo “The Unholy Terror” Desjardin (0-4), of North Attleboro, Massachusetts. Berry, who is the only fighter to appear in the Fight To Educate as an amateur and professional, dropped Desjardin with a straight right hand. He beat the count but the referee halted the fight when Desjardon stood on wobbly legs.
In the amateur matches, light flyweight Jen Amato, of Keene (NH), won a three-round decision over Felecia O’Brien, of Boston, in the amateur Fight of the Night. Amato was selected as Boxer of the Night.
Manchester (NH) middleweight Ryan Clark won a three-round decision against Ricky Ford, of Claremont (NH), while 92-pound Junior Olympian Angel Tricoch won a three-round decision over Wyatt Stearns, of Monroe (ME).
Proceeds from the 13h annual Fight To Educate will benefit SEE Science Center (www.see-sciencecenter.org), The Bobby Stephens Fund for Education (www.stepheneducationfund.com), and New Horizons for New Hampshire.
Full results below:
Mark Deluca (11-0, 8 KOs), Whitman, MA WTKO3 (2:39) Gundrick King (18-13, 11 KOs), Tuscaloosa, AL
Russell Lamour (10-0, 5 KOs), Portland, ME WTKO2 (3:00) Dennis Ogboo (7-8, 6 KOs), Lexington, KY
Chris Gilbert (12-1, 9 KOs), Windsor, VTWDEC8 (76-75 X 3) Steven Matthews (4-1, 2 KOs), Greensboro, NC
Brandon Berry (7-0, 4 KOs), West Forks, ME WTKO1 (2:18) Theo Desjardin (0-4), North Attleboro, MA
FEMALE LIGHT FLYWEIGHTS
Jen Amato, Keene, NH WDEC3 Felecia O’Brien, Boston, MA
(Amateur Fight of the Night and Amato Boxer of the Night)
Ricky Ford, Claremont, NH WDEC3 Ryan Clark, Manchester, NH
92 POUNDS – JUNIOR OLYMPIANS
Angel Tricoch, Haverhill, MA WDEC3 Wyatt Stearns, Monroe, ME