By Keith Idec
LOS ANGELES – Julian Williams was a late addition to the Deontay Wilder-Tyson Fury undercard.
That didn’t prevent him from making quick, easy work of Francisco Javier Castro. Philadelphia’s Williams stopped Francisco Javier Castro in the second round of a scheduled eight-round middleweight match Saturday at Staples Center.
Williams knocked down Castro with a left hook in the second round. The overmatched Mexican veteran got up and tried to continue, only to have Williams hammer him with an array of rights and lefts that made referee Ray Corona step between them to save Castro from taking unnecessary punishment.
Their fight was stopped at 2:40 of the second round.
The 28-year-old Williams, who’s in position to secure another junior middleweight title shot, improved to 26-1-1 and produced his 16th knockout.
The 34-year-old Castro (28-9, 23 KOs) has lost five of his past six fights. He lost by knockout or technical knockout for the third time since making his pro debut in October 2004.
After Williams’ victory, cruiserweight Marsellos Wilder defeated David Damore by unanimous decision in their four-round bout. Wilder (3-0, 2 KOs), Deontay Wilder’s younger brother, knocked down Damore (1-5-3) late in the second round and beat Bakersfield’s Damore by the same score, 40-35, on all three cards.
In the bout before Williams’ win, junior flyweight prospect Jesse Rodriguez easily out-boxed Josue Morales in a six-round bantamweight bout.
San Antonio’s Rodriguez (8-0, 4 KOs) won all six rounds on each of the three judges’ scorecards (60-54, 60-54, 60-54).
Houston’s Morales (8-9-3) lost for the second time in two weeks. In his previous appearance, another prospect, 2016 American Olympian Nico Hernandez (6-0, 4 KOs), beat him by unanimous decision in their eight-rounder November 17 in Mulvane, Kansas.
In the opening bout on this 11-fight card, British featherweight Issac Lowe knocked down Argentina’s Lucas Rafael Baez twice and stopped him at 2:11 of the fifth round.
Baez (33-17-5, 17 KOs) got up from both knockdowns, but referee Thomas Taylor determined once he reached his feet the second time that Baez shouldn’t continue. Lowe (16-0-3, 5 KOs) won the WBC International featherweight title.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.