Ringside Report by Scott Ploof
Photo by Emily Harney
Professional boxing returned to Massachusetts in a historic three fight event held Sunday night at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, home to the NFL’s New England Patriots and Major League Soccer’s New England Revolution. In the main event, welterweight Danny O’Connor (18-1, 7KOs) out of nearby Framingham, MA knocked out Providence, RI’s Eddie Soto (12-5, 4 KOs) at 1:09 of the fourth round. O’Connor used his jab to setup his offense and he worked the body well breaking down Soto throughout. He knocked Soto down in the first with a series of body shots that had Soto stumble to the canvas. Soto was up at eight as the first round came to a close. O’Connor continued his onslaught through the second and third round. In round four O’Connor’s hard work paid off as a left followed by a flurry knocked Soto down and out for the count of ten.
Dorchester, MA native Billy Traft (2-0, 1 KO) scored the first knockout of his professional career as he stopped Dan Bonnell (0-2) in the first round of their super middleweight bout. Traft dominated with his combinations during the round. With seconds left in the round, Traft dropped Bonnell with a left right combination. Bonnell was able to get up before the count of ten, however he was not able to get off of the stool for the beginning of round two. This gave Traft his first technical knockout at 3:00 of round one.
Welterweight Antonio Chavez Fernandes, fighting out of historic Brockton, MA, won a four round unanimous decision over Springfield, MA native Noel Garcia (2-15, 1 KO), Scores of the bout were 40-36 twice and 39-37. Both fighters landed hard shots however Fernandes with his height and reach advantage dictated the pace of the fight, and by doing so gave him the nod on the scorecards.