By Mariano A. Agmi
Hometown favorite Vinny Maddalone (36-8, 27 KOs) returned to Queens, his home borough, in emphatic fashion on Saturday, knocking down journeyman Byron Polley (25-14-1, 11 KOs) three times en route to a third round technical knockout. The bout served as the main event of an eight bout card promoted by Old World, New Legend and Won Promotions in association with Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing at the Resorts World Casino in Jamaica, Queens. Maddalone (231.5 lbs), who trained for nine and a half weeks for this bout, came out swinging in round one, landing heavy shots to Byron’s soft midsection and later launching a huge overhand right that landed on the top of Byron’s head, dropping him for the first time in the fight. Maddalone knocked the St. Joseph, MS, native twice more in rounds two and three, each time with overhand rights. To his credit, the extremely overweight Polley (268.25 lbs) got up each time, but one could see the fight leaving him with each absorbed blow. A final combination at 1:11 of the round dropped Polley for the second time in the round, convincing the referee to halt the bout.
In the co-feature, undefeated Brooklyn bantamweight Juan Dominguez improved to 12-0 (8), blasting out Colombian Jhon Alberto Molina (30-22-3, 19 KO’s, 120lbs) at 0:01 of round 4.
Dominguez (121 lbs) made the most of his height and reach advantage early on, landing a stiff jab and a long right hand to control the bout. Outgunned, the shorter Molina (120 lbs) tried to work his way inside behind a looping overhand right, but he was unable to land anything of significance.
Inexplicably, Molina convinced his corner that he could not continue after round 3, complaining about an injury to his left leg. A disappointed Dominguez was awarded a technical knockout at one second into round four.
Queens native Frank Galarza (8-0-1, 4 KOs) won a hard fought six round unanimous decision over Roberto Lopez (4-4-2, 1 KO) of Vineland, NJ in a junior middleweight bout.
Lopez (152 lbs) proved to be much better than his record indicated, as he pressured the taller Galarza all night behind a southpaw stance. Galarza, weakened by having to lose two extra pounds to make 152 lbs, appeared less energetic than usual and struggled to keep Lopez off of him. Instead, the Queens native used superior technique, movement and speed to spin away from the advancing Lopez and land effective counter punches.
The momentum seemed to change as the bout progressed, as Lopez began to trap a tiring Galarza against the ropes in round five. Determined not to let the fight slip away from him, Galarza came alive in round six, lacing Lopez with big right hands and hooks to the body.
After six hard rounds, all three judges scored the bout 59-55 for Galarza.
Brooklyn’s own Angel Garcia improved to 4-1 (2), winning a majority decision over Victor Galindo (1-1, 1 KO) in a four round lightweight bout.
Galindo (133 lbs) did all of the chasing in rounds one and two, doing his best to force the fight against the elusive Garcia (134 lbs), who refused to engage the charging fighter from Savana Grande.
Sensing that he needed to turn up his punch output to win the fight, Garcia began to counterpunch effectively in rounds three and four. Garcia’s constant movement and awkward shots confused Galindo, who didn’t know when Garcia was moving, stopping or punching.
The Brooklynite was lucky that he started when he did, as he was able to pull off the victory by scores of 39-37 (2x) and 38-38.
Bryant Cruz of Portchester, NY, won his professional debut via technical knockout over Jonathan Caban (0-4) of the Bronx, NY in a junior lightweight contest. Cruz mangled Caban (130 lbs) for 2 plus rounds until the referee halted the one sided drubbing at 1:20 of the round.
Brooklyn featherweight Heather Hardy (3-0) won a dominant four round decision over Ivana Coleman (0-3). Hardy used volume punching and superior technique to win 40-36 on all three judges’ scorecards.
Abdellah Smith (2-4 2 KOs) of Queens, NY, spoiled the pro debut of 46-year-old light heavyweight Robert Garris, landing a vicious right hand in round two that knocked Garris out cold at 1:08 of the round. Previously a stellar amateur with a record of 67-3, Mount Vernon’s Garris was fighting for the first time since 1985, when an injury prevented him from fighting professionally.
In the opening bout of the evening, Neuky Santelises improved to 2-0 (1) with an entertaining four round decision over Micah Branch (1-3) of Cincinnati, OH. Scores were 39-37 (2x) and 40-36 in favor of the Washington Heights native.