By David P. Greisman
Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City - In what can aptly be described as a bloody good fight — or perhaps a good, bloody fight — Cornelius White took a unanimous decision over former Cuban amateur fighter Yordanis Despaigne in a six-round light heavyweight bout.
The scorecards were 60-53 and 59-55 (twice).
Both men started off white white trunks, which soon became crimson and bloodied. White was cut near his left eye in the first round by a punch. Despaigne was cut high on the left side of his forehead on the second round by what was likely a clash of heads. While Despaigne’s cut would bleed less as the bout went on, White battled through a wound that continued to flow.
White invested in body shots and nearly always followed them with shots upstairs. He would continue to out-work Despaigne over the duration of the bout, digging to the body, hooking upstairs and then sending out jabs when he wanted to keep Despaigne away. Despaigne couldn’t overcome White’s activity and couldn’t get away from his pressure.
White, 30, of Houston, improves to 18-1 (15 knockouts). Despaigne, 31, originally from Cuba but now fighting out of Coral Gables, Fla., falls to 9-2 (4 knockouts).
Edison Miranda scored a fifth-round technical knockout over Kariz Kariuki in an eight-round light heavyweight bout. The time of stoppage was 2:15.
Whatever power Miranda still carries at 175 was too much for Kariuki, though Kariuki still mounted some resistance. Miranda hurt Kariuki with a good left hook in the second, and then Kariuki came forward and landed a good right hand on Miranda before the bell. He wouldn’t be able to take clean shots much longer.
Kariuki hit Miranda with a good right hand in the fifth round that was followed by a counter left from Miranda that knocked Kariuki down and his mouthpiece out. Referee Alan Huggins never called time out, and so while Kariuki was waiting for his mouthpiece to go back in, Miranda ran forward and threw a right hand an opponent who wasn’t looking at him.
Kariuki went down again but did not appear to be hurt. Huggins ruled it a slip, of all things, and then finally called time out to get Kariuki’s mouthpiece back in. Miranda again closed in on his opponent, sending out several shots that left Kariuki staggering and forced Huggins to jump in.
Miranda, 30, of Buenaventura, Colombia, is now 35-6 (30 knockouts). Kariuki, 34, originally from Kenya but now fighting out of Tampa, Fla., is now 24-10-2 (19 knockouts).
Bowie Tupou defeated Donnell Holmes by unanimous decision in a 10-round heavyweight bout. The scorecards were 96-93 and 95-94 (twice).
Despite both men’s records and physiques — or perhaps because of it — the first few rounds were tentative and dull. The bout picked up, though, first with trading from in close, and then with Tupou knocking Holmes down with a right hand in the seventh round. Tupou then threw another shot as Holmes was getting up from the knockdown, though the attempted foul missed.
Tupou seemed to be coasting in the 10th round, either because he knew he was in the lead or because he was tired. Holmes, behind in the blow, sought the knockout, landing several hard punches on a retreating Tupou, but he was unable to land the fight-turning blow.
Tupou, 29, of Los Angeles, improves to 22-1 (16 knockouts). Holmes, 38, of Ivanhoe, N.C., falls to 33-2-2 (29 knockouts).
In a four-round heavyweight swing bout, John Lennox knocked out Jeremiah Witherspoon in the third round, a beating that lasted longer than it needed to and left Witherspoon on the canvas for a few minutes.
Announced as a technical knockout, the end came 50 seconds into the round.
Lennox had Witherspoon reeling and was chasing him around the ring. Finally, he trapped him on the ropes and pummeled him there with left hooks and right hands until Witherspoon collapsed and the referee, Randy Neumann, finally stepped in.
Lennox, 29, of Carteret, N.J., is now 8-1 (4 KOs). Witherspoon, 34, of Trenton, N.J., is now 2-2 (1 KO).