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Story by John DiSanto
Photos by Darryl Cobb Jr. /


Hammerin’ Hank Lundy made good on his promise to score a knockout in his homecoming bout in the scheduled eight-round main event at the 2300 Arena Friday night. Lundy, on the road for the past seven-plus years, came back to South Philly to rout Daniel Evangelista of Mexico City. The brash lightweight stormed out at the opening bell and took control of the contest immediately.  

Hammerin’ Hank swept the first four rounds fairly easily. Lundy took a handful of shots, but spent most of the time on the offense. He scored numerous blows and bullied Evangelista around the ring. The Mexican stayed calm and looked for a chance to turn the fight with a single shot. That opportunity never really materialized. 

The closest that Evangelista came to turning the fight was the solid right hand that he landed on Lundy in round five. However, as it turned out, the punch was the beginning of the end for him.

“I didn’t want to knock him out,” Lundy said after the fight. “But he hit me, and I got mad.” 

After Evangelista’s best shot of the fight, Lundy waged forward and unleashed a deadly combination on his prey. A vicious left hook followed by a hard right hand found Evangelista’s chin and the visitor crumbled to the canvas. He rolled over and climbed to his feet, but referee Gary Rosato took a long look and stopped the fight. The time was 2:53 of the fifth round.

The victory for Lundy, dominant but expected, raised his record to 28-6-1, 14 KOs, and kept his quest for a world title at 135 pounds alive. Lundy has collected a multitude of regional belts and even vied for a world championship at 140. However, the optimistic South Philadelphian is convinced that if he gets a big chance at lightweight, becoming champ is a foregone conclusion. As good a fighter as Lundy is, perhaps his greatest asset is his belief in himself. Hopefully it will carry him to one more run at the big time.

Evangelista slid to 19-8-2, with 15 KOs, with the loss, and it was the fourth time he was stopped.

In the co-feature bout, North Philly junior middleweight Isaiah Wise, 5-1, 3 KOs, looked improved and evolved with a clear cut 6-round unanimous decision over Mark Daniels, Jr. of Crandon, WI, 3-1, 1 KO. Wise maintained the lead from the opening bell, using a steady body attack, a good jab, a slicker moves than he’s ever displayed before. Despite suffering a slight cut over his right eye in round five and tiring a bit in the final two rounds, this was probably Wise’s best performance thus far. Wise won every round on my card, and took the official decision by scores of 60-54 and 59-55 twice.

Rising local welterweight star, Jaron Ennis, 12-0, 10 KOs put down Nicaraguan Wilfredo Acuna, 17-21, 13 KOs, twice in the first round, and won by knockout at 1:23 of the scheduled six-rounder. A booming right to the chin dropped Acuna the first time before another right, this time to the body, put the southpaw down for the full 10-count by referee was Blair Talmadge. Ennis continues to impress every time out, and keeps a bust schedule. He is expected to return to the ring in two weeks in Baltimore.

In a junior welterweight bout scheduled for four rounds, Dion Richardson, Newark, NJ, 2-1, 1 KO, upset Rockledge, PA's Scott Kelleher, 5-1, 3 KOs, in round one, after three knockdowns. Kelleher had the biggest cheering section in the crowded arena on this night, but shortly after the bout began, his boosters went silent.

Richardson shocked Kelleher, who was returning after a one year injury layoff, with a combination that sent the popular puncher into the ropes. Referee Gary Rosato correctly called the incident a knockdown. Kelleher, still a bit stunned, made it to his feet and returned to the action.

Quickly, Richardson jumped on Kelleher, and slammed him with a right hand / left hook combo that dropped the undefeated fighter again. Kelleher bravely climbed to his feet again, with an apparent broken nose that was spouting blood. He looked in shock, but returned to the fray.

However, Richardson was waiting and eager to close the show. Moments later, another Richardson right hand put Kelleher down for the third time, and referee Gary Rosato stopped the shockingly one-sided match at 2:19.

Flashy Philly featherweight Crystian Peguero, 2-0, 1 KO, defeated Rochester, NY's Saquan Felton, 0-2, in their 4-round bout. Like in his pro debut a few months ago, Peguero pounded his foe to the body and landed many shots to the head. He was a little wild, but also extremely fun to watch. Peguero controlled the fight all the way, and won by scores of 39-37 and 40-36 twice. 

In a rematch between two lightweights, Marko Bailey, 5-0, 3 KOs, Durham, NC, repeated his previous points victory over Vinnie Deniero, 1-2, 1 KO, Geneva, NY. It was a good, close fight, but Bailey prevailed after four rounds, by scores of 39-37, 39-37 and 38-38.

Philly welterweight Marcel Rivers, 2-0, 1 KO, won an entertaining four-round unanimous decision over Jamaal Gregory of Arapahoe, NC, 1-1, 1 KO. Both fighters had their moments, landing punches and pressing the action. However Rivers dropped his foe in round three with a right hand, and took the official nod by three scores of 39-36. My score was the same.

In a the opening bout of the night, junior middleweights Ishmael Altman, 0-0-1, Arapahoe, NC, and Philadelphian Tyree Crowder, 0-0-1, fought to a 4-round draw. Both fighters were making their professional debut. Altman appeared to have the upper hand, but all three official judges had the fight deadlocked at 38-38. My score favored Altman, 39-37.

In the walkout bout, Catskill cruiserweight Alvin Varmall, 11-0-1, 9 KOs, knocked out Texan Juan Reyna, 6-7-1, 2 KOs, at 2:02 of round one of a scheduled six-rounder. Reyna fell twice, with the final blow, a left hook to the body, keeping him down for referee Blair Talmadge's full ten count.

The nine-bout sellout show was promoted by Peltz Boxing, BAM Boxing, CES Boxing, Joe Hand Promotions, and Raging Babe. Former champs Jeff Chandler and Bernard Hopkins were in attendance.




John DiSanto - South Philly - June 02, 2017