By Keith Idec
Junior Fa remained undefeated Friday night, but this “ShoBox” performance wasn’t as impressive as his “ShoBox” debut four months ago.
The heavyweight prospect from New Zealand went the distance in an uneventful eight-round fight against Detroit’s Craig Lewis in Deadwood, South Dakota. Fa won a majority decision, as judges Juan Carlos Pelayo (78-74) and Benoit Roussel (79-73) scored their fight for the favored Fa, while Rey Danseco scored the action even (76-76).
The 6-feet-5, 256½-pound Fa, 28, upped his record to 14-0 (8 KOs). Lewis, 33, lost for the second time in his past three bouts and slipped to 14-2-1 (8 KOs, 1 NC).
Showtime televised Fa’s win as the opener of a “ShoBox: The New Generation” tripleheader from Deadwood Mountain Grand.
In Fa’s first “ShoBox” appearance, he knocked out Pittsburgh’s Fred Latham (9-2-2, 5 KOs) in the first round November 10 in Cleveland. He didn’t do nearly as much damage Friday night in a fight that featured entirely too much clinching by both boxers.
Fa was aggressive to start the eighth round, but he wasn’t able to hurt an exhausted Lewis.
Lewis seemed to get the better of an exchange late in the seventh round, during which Fa and Lewis landed right hands. Fa drilled Lewis with two left hooks with just under two minutes to go in the seventh round.
Lewis had some success in the fifth round, when he hit Fa with a right hand when there was just over a minute to go in it. Just after the fourth round began, Fa landed a left-right combination that backed up Lewis.
Fa connected with an overhand right that moved Lewis toward the ropes with about 30 seconds to go in the third round. Fa knocked Lewis back into the ropes with an overhand right early in the second round.
In non-televised action Friday night, Charles Conwell, a 2016 Olympian from Cleveland, beat Mexican veteran Juan Jesus Rivera by unanimous decision in a six-round junior middleweight match. Conwell (7-0, 5 KOs) dropped Rivera (28-20, 18 KOs) in the sixth round and won by the same score, 60-53, on all three cards.
Also Friday night, heavyweight prospect Trey Lippe-Morrison kept his perfect record intact by knocking out Oswaldo Ortega in the third round of a scheduled six-rounder.
The 28-year-old Lippe-Morrison, a son of late WBO heavyweight champion Tommy Morrison, has knocked out all 14 of his pro opponents since the Oklahoma native made his debut in February 2014. The ex-college football player dropped Mexico’s Ortega (3-8, 1 KO) once apiece in the second and third rounds, before their fight was stopped at 1:18 of the third.
Lippe-Morrison fought for the first time in 15 months. His layoff largely was due to suffering a broken hand last year.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.