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Story by Danny Ziccardi
Photos by Darryl Cobb Jr. / Instagram: @darrylcobb


Hard Hitting Promotions’ Will Ruiz and matchmaker Manny Rivera put on a spectacular night of fights at The Fillmore this past Saturday July 23rd. The seven-bout card featured a main event between William Foster III and Avery Sparrow, along with some other exciting prospects including Juan Davila, Christian Tapia, and Philadelphia favorite Jeremy Cuevas. This report was written after watching the broadcast hosted by Marc Abrams and Stephen “Breadman” Edwards.

The main event of the night featured an eight-round junior lightweight contest between Philadelphia’s Avery Sparrow (11-4, 4 KOs) and undefeated William Foster III (15-0, 9 KOs) of Connecticut. Foster made his presence known in Philly prior to this bout when he defeated hometown favorite Donald “No Love” Smith in a unanimous decision victory at 2300 Arena in 2021.

In the opening rounds, the forward-moving Sparrow occasionally backed up Foster. Foster was able to use his slick jab to keep his distance, and followed up with his right, landing shots on top and to the body. Foster seemed to come out of the gates with confidence, using his length to jab at a slow-starting Sparrow.

Round three gave the fans a taste of how the rest of the bout would play out. Sparrow looked to brawl, and Foster accepted the invitation to a fire fight. Foster backed up Sparrow, landed clean counter hooks and dominated most of the round. Sparrow, displaying his Philly grit, responded with a hard right hook to end the round.

Rounds four through six were a Philly fight-fan’s delight, with the brawl continuing. Neither fighter backed down and displayed respectively tough chins. Foster frequently got the better of the exchanges with cleaner boxing, while Sparrow connected on sharp counter punches making the fight “highly competitive” as Philadelphia boxing icon Marc Abrams said in his broadcast commentary.

Sparrow landed quite possibly the biggest shots of the night to end the seventh round, with a hard right followed up by a flurry that wobbled Foster. The final round saw Foster work from the outside on Sparrow. In a familiar trend throughout the fight, Sparrow was able to end the round with a barrage.

In an extremely tight contest featuring a clash of styles, both fighters came for their respect, and earned it. All three judges (Robert Rubnitz, Kevin Morgan, and Steve Weisfeld) scored the bout 77-75 in favor of William Foster, who remained undefeated. Despite the unanimous decision for Foster, Sparrow won over the crowd and showed his heart and true toughness throughout the scrap. Official weights: Avery Sparrow 129.1 - William Foster III 128.7. The referee was Eric Dali.


In the co-feature of the night, undefeated lightweight Christian Tapia (15-0, 12 KOs), of Puerto Rico took on Argentine Mario Sayal Lozano (18-8-1) in an eight-round bout. Lozano took the fight on short notice, stepping up to the challenge to fight a dangerous Hard Hitting promoted Christian Tapia.

After a slow starting first round that saw Tapia control the pace, the short notice Southpaw landed a shot of his own. Lozano countered Tapia with a left to the temple that put the favorite down in the second round. After the flash-knockdown, Tapia shifted into second gear and dominated the rest of the fight. Tapia won via an impressive unanimous decision victory with official scores of 78-73 across the board (Tony Lundy, Rob Rubnitz, and Steve Weisfeld). The referee was Shawn Clark. Official weights: Christian Tapia 131.5 - Mario Lozano 132.


Puerto Rican born Philadelphian Jan Carlos Rivera (6-1, 4 KOs) squared up against fellow countryman Nelson Perez (5-1, 2 KOs). Rivera displayed quick hands, and outboxed Perez en route to a six-round unanimous decision victory with the judges scoring the bout 59-55 (Tony Lundy), 60-54 (Kevin Morgan), 60-54 (Steve Weisfeld). The referee for the contest was Eric Dali. Official weights: Jan Carlos Rivera 130.8 - Nelson Perez 140.4.


Philadelphia favorite, southpaw Jeremy Cuevas (14-1, 10 KOs) faced outsider Nicolas Pablo Demario (16-7-3, 10 KOs) of Argentina in a six-round lightweight bout. Cuevas did not disappoint the hometown crowd, pounding on a willing and tough opponent throughout the contest. Cuevas scored a knockdown in the final round of the bout after landing an onslaught of blows. Cuevas broke down his Demario and won the contest by unanimous scores of 60-53 across the board (Lundy, Morgan, and Rubnitz). The referee for the bout was Shawn Clark. Official weights: Jeremy Cuevas 144 - Nicolas Demario 143.


New York’s Dezmond Lucas (6-1) won by TKO after three rounds over Daniel Sostre (13-21) in a four-round junior middleweight clash. Lucas put down Sostre in the opening round and clearly controlled the short-lived contest. Sostre’s team ended the bout in the corner after the second round. The referee was Eric Dali. Official weights: Dezmond Lucas 151 - Lucas Sostre 155.2.


Carlos Rosario (4-0, 2 KOs) of Winter Haven, FL, fought Puerto Rico’s Jonuel Ramos (Pro Debut) in a four-round lightweight contest. Despite an aggressive approach by Ramos, Rosario was able to outbox Ramos winning a unanimous decision victory with judges scores of 40-36 (Tony Lundy), 39-37 (Kevin Morgan) and 39-37 (Steve Weisfeld). I personally scored the bout 39-37 giving all but the opening round to Rosario. Rosario remained undefeated. The referee was Eric Dali. Official weights: Carlos Rosario 136.9 - Jonuel Ramos 136.


18-year-old Philadelphia lightweight Juan Davila made his pro debut against Puerto Rican Joshua Maldonado (1-2). Davila looked impressive in his debut, displaying a strong jab, and controlling the pace of the fight. Davila walked down Maldonado, and eventually wore him down to score a third round TKO. The time of the stoppage by referee Shawn Clark was 1:29 of the third round. Davila moves to 1-0, 1 KO. Official weights: Juan Davila 137.5 - Joshua Maldonado 136.




Danny Ziccardi - Philadelphia (via - July 23, 2022