By Peter Lim
Welterweight Craig Callaghan (6-0, 4 KOs) dropped southpaw Booker Arthur (1-6) twice en route to a first round knockout at the Bayou City Events Center in Houston. Standing at a lanky 6-foot-1, Callaghan, 26, controlled the action with long whipper-snapper straight rights before dropping Arthur with a short, compact left hook to the chin towards the end of the round. Arthur beat the count but immediately ran into more straight rights followed by an uppercut that put him down for good.
The card was staged by Savarese Boxing Promotions.
In the main event, South African heavyweight Ruann Visser made a successful pro debut against Sugi Foxx (1-10, 1) in what was tantamount to a horse-versus-hog size mismatch. Visser stood at 6-foot-10 and 290 pounds while Foxx was 5-foot-10 and tipped the scales at a flabby 275. After Visser connected with a series of straight punches, Foxx capitulated by turning his back, prompting referee Sam Garza to wave the bout over midway through the first round. About 100 South African fans, many in green Springbok jerseys, were lured out of the Houston woodwork for Visser's debut.
Utilizing a sneaky and explosive right hook, heavyweight southpaw Thomas Hawkins (4-0, 1 KO) registered the first knockout of his career, stopping Raymond Brown (3-3, 1 KO) in the first round. Brown was rendered out on his feet against the ropes by a barrage of right hooks and overhand lefts, cueing referee Gary Simon to step in.
Cruiserweight southpaw Darnell Pierce (1-0) won a four-round majority decision over Josh Garza (1-1, 1 KO) in an entertaining scrap fought at a skill level well above what the fighters' records might suggest. Working his right hook overtime, Pierce was the busier fighter, but Garza effectively caught most of the incoming fire on his arms and gloves by turning and weaving from a peekaboo guard before landing the cleaner, harder shots on the inside. The scores were 40-36 and 39-37 for Pierce while the third judge had it even at 38-38. Boxingscene.com scored the fight 39-38 for Garza.
Southpaws Aaron Willis (0-0-1) and Willie Miller (0-8-1) fought to a four-round draw in a junior welterweight bout.
A junior middleweight bout between Paul Guitierrez (5-1-1, 3 KOs) and Andrew Sosa (0-2) was ruled a no contest due to an accidental headbutt that opened a cut above Sosa's eye in the opening round