By Kurt Wolfheimer at ringside
Rising Philly featherweight prospect, “Pretty Boy” Coy Evans (8-0-1, 2KO’s) looked spectacular on Friday night at the Arena in South Philadelphia PA, scoring a destructive third round knockout of experienced Kenyan, Morris Chule (11-11-2, 8KO’s) in the eight round main event of the evening. Unfortunately on the undercard, several bouts fell out at the last moment so fans were unable to see the likes of undefeated middleweight prospect Derrick Webster (5-0, 4KO’s) and the ever popular Olivia “The Great” Fonseca (3-2-2, 2KO’s). However, former amateur standout Keenan Smith stepped in admirably in scoring a one sided four round unanimous decision over fellow Philly super featherweight, Luis “Smurf” Esquilin (1-4-1), in his professional debut. The four bout card was promoted by Greg Robinson in association with the River Edge Beverage Company.
Unbeaten featherweight “Pretty Boy” Coy Evans looked more like the executioner than his slick nickname indicated as he completely dismantled the more experienced Kenyan Morris Chule.
Both fighters looked for openings in the early going of the opening round. Coy landed a solid one two on the button, but Chule came right back with a right hand off his own. The confidence of Evans seemed to grow as the round went on and his punches found their mark. Coy’s superior hands speed and defense showed as Chule slowed and his wide shot whisked over Evans head.
Coy continued to slip and counter well with sharp jabs and right hands which snapped the Kenyans head back much to the delight of the hometown crowd. Chule vainly tried to get inside, but Evans covered and countered well. A one two combination forced Chule to stumble backwards but he was able to regain his footing and opened up to trade away with a wide stance. It was a major mistake as hard left right combination sent a surprised Morris Chule to the canvas with a minute to go. Chule rose to his feet and tried to fend off his attacker, but Coy was sharp and returned him to the canvas with two perfectly placed right hands. Once again Chule rose to his feet and the time ran out before “Pretty Boy” Coy could inflict any more damage.
Chule opened up to fend off Coy in the early going of the third. Evans was calm and he picked his spots with several explosive right hands and combinations. The end finally came at the 1:21 mark when a left straightened Chule up and a right hand on the button had him unconscious before he hit the canvas for the third and final time. Referee Benjy Esteves Jr., immediately summoned the ring doctor into the ring. Morris Chule recovered quickly and walked out of the ring just moments later under his own recognizance.
“I really didn’t know too much about him early on, so I tried to feel him out,” said Coy Evans. “Once I saw he was throwing wild slow shots and I knew that I was faster than him, I just listened to my corner and Bozey Ennis told me to take my time and I would get the knockout, which was just what I did.”
For those of us who have seen Coy Evans progress as a pro, you could clearly see that he is no longer just trying to out pressure his opponents but is seeing his spots and mixing up his combinations. He has clearly improved his defense and now is setting down on his punches. The punching power has showed in his last two destructive knockout victories. Look for Coy to make a big impact on the national scene in the very near future.
Smith impressive in Debut
Former two time national amateur champion, Keenan Smith put on quite a show in his professional debut, capturing a unanimous decision victory over Luis “Smurf” Esquilin (1-4-1) in their scheduled four round super featherweight contest, featuring two Philly southpaws.
Smith seemed confident from the opening bell as he pushed back the fellow Philadelphian with his excellent hand speed. Esquilin, wearing the Superman trunks, tried to get inside and fight, but he just couldn’t find his way inside Keenan’s defense early. Keenan put Esquilin to the ropes with right-left combination. Smurf seemed more off balance then hurt and immediately got out of trouble. Smith went back to work on the right jabs. Esquilin seemed to be giving too much respect and just didn’t return fire when the opportunities presented themselves.
Esquilin, at the advice of his corner, opened up with a good one two combination which caught Keenan on the button, but he just shrugged it off. Both fighters had their moments in a give and take second round.
The two pugilists went after it in the third round, trading away, but it was Smith who hurt Esquilin and force him to clinch from a good left hand. Smith was unable to get a big shot in, so he went back to jabbing. The man known as Smurf pressed forward, but a Smith one two combo stopped him in his tracks. Smith dropped his hands and goaded his opponent to open up late in the third, but Luis just didn’t let his hands go.
Keenan looked confident in round four as he pressed the attack throughout with combination after combination which Esquilin had no answer for.
All three judges saw it 40-36 in favor of Keenan Smith, who moves to 1-0. Luis Esquilin took the loss to drop to 1-4-1.
Amaro upsets McKenzie
In a battle of light heavyweights, Philly’s Maurice Amaro (1-2) won for the first time in his career spoiling the professional debut of Ridley Park’s Joe McKenzie in an awkward four round scrap.
Both fighters swung away wildly immediately after the opening bell sounded Neither fighter landed much, but it was clear after the opening moments that Maurice Amaro had settled. His short jabs which peppered the face of Joe McKenzie set up several good right hands. McKenzie began to fight on the retreat with wide shots in lunges, most of which landed on the arms Amaro. McKenzie continued to bounce away and circle to his right, so Amaro calmly popped a couple straight rights to the body as the opening round came to a close.
Joe McKenzie looked tentative and occasionally landed a few lunging lead rights, but would immediately clinch and go back on the retreat as Amaro scored with single shots.
The fight almost turned in round three as a lunging McKenzie right hand caught Amaro flush on the chin while against the ropes and seemed to stun him. Unfortunately for McKenzie, he didn’t see it because he had dug his head into the chest of Amaro and clinched, allowing him to quickly recover.
Joe tried to fight for the first time on the inside as round four opened, but most of his punches were smothered so he went back on the retreat. Amaro began looking for the one big shot that could floor his opponent. It was clear that McKenzie was tiring and his hands were dropping.
Maurice Amaro popped him with a picture perfect straight right which snapped Joe’s head back, but he again went to jabbing on the retreat to get out of trouble. An Amaro right hand up top in the closing moments bounced McKenzie of the ropes. An accidental head butt from a lunging Amaro happened just before the final bell, but no damage was done.
All three judges gave every round to Maurice Amaro by scores of 40-36 x 3, for the unanimous decision victory.
Pairol stifles “Cool Breeze”
In the opening four round contest, Cuban Puro Pairol (1-0-1) used his aggressiveness and hand speed early, to pull the upset over formerly undefeated super featherweight prospect Kareem “Cool Breeze” Cooley (1-1, 1KO).
Pairol jumped on Cooley right from the opening bell with two quick combinations which seemed to surprise the Philadelphian. Pairol seemed to be timing Cooley’s right hand and unloading whenever he unleashed it. Cooley was slick though and able to keep the round close with his jabs.
Kareem tried to settle in as the bout went on, but Puro Pairol just kept him off balance with well timed jabs and big single right hands to both the head and body
Behind on the scorecards, Kareem finally shortened his shots and opened up in the fourth round which put Pairol on the defensive. The fight really turned as Cooley unloaded a couple left hooks, which caught Pairol lunging in and forced him to clinch. Unfortunately it was not enough as Pairol found his rhythm and boxed his way to the final bell sending the fight to the scorecards. All three judges saw the bout 39-37 in favor of Puro Pairol, who captured his first victory as a professional.