By Francisco Salazar

Heavyweight contender Junior Fa stopped Newfel Ouatah in the opening round Saturday night at the Volnovich Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Fa dropped Ouatah a total of four times during the fight, prompting the fight to be immediately stopped after the last knockdown at 2:51.

The 29-year-old Fa, who resides in Otahuhu, New Zealand, improves to 17-0, 10 knockouts. He has won his two bouts by knockout.

Saturday night was not Fa’s first bout in the United States. He knocked out Fred Latham in the opening round in November of 2017 and won a hard-fought majority decision over Craig Lewis about four months later.

Both those fights aired on Showtime’s ’ShoBox’ series.

“I believe he can fight against any of the top heavyweights in the world,” DiBella told BoxingScene a day before the fight. “He was dealing with anemia, which he wasn’t sharp in two-three of his previous fights. Now that it is behind him, he can move forward being a force in the division.”

Fa, who is promoted by Lou DiBella, is ranked number eight by the WBO.

Three heavyweights promoted by DiBella remained unbeaten after winning their respective bouts Saturday night.

George Arias (13-0, 7 KOs), who is originally from the Dominican Republic and now resides in the Bronx, New York, defeated Robert Simms (8-3, 3 KOs) by unanimous decision.

Stephan Shaw (11-0 1 NC, 8 KOs) batter Donovan Dennis before the fight was stopped in the third round. Dennis (12-4, 10 KOs) has lost his last three fights.

Hemi Ahio, another New Zealand fighter, stopped Ed Fountain (12-5, 5 KOs) in round seven to improve to 13-0, 9 KOs.

Local junior middleweights Jamie Walker (9-1-2, 3 KOs) fought to a draw against Dan Karpency (8-2-1, 4 KOs) over 10 rounds.

Francisco A. Salazar has written for since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing