By Jake Donovan
Luis Ortiz preseved his unbeaten record in dominant style, scoring a 4th round stoppage over faded former heavyweight contender Monte Barrett in their headliner Thursday evening in Indio, California.
The bout was never competitive, but hardly atoned for what was a bizarre - and arguably premature - stoppage. Ortiz scored with a flush shot to the nose of Barrett, who immedately clutched his face in pain as he fell to the canvas.
Referee Raul Caiz moved in to rule a knockdown, but sensed that Barrett was experiencing the type of damaging pain to where he should no longer continue. With that came the stoppage.
The official time was 0:38 of round four.
The 35-year old Ortiz, a Cuban southpaw now residing in Miami, picks up his deepest knockout in nearly three years as he improves to 21-0 (18KO).
Barrett falls to 35-11-2 (20KO). The New Yorker hadn't fought in nearly two years, when he suffered a 4th round knockout loss to Shane Cameron in July '12. A return to retirement would seem to be the likely next step.
Like a noted heavyweight earlier in the card (read below), Diego de la Hoya was forced to settle for a decision for the first time in his young career, pitching a six-round shutout over Jaxel Marrero.
Scores were 60-53 across the board for the 19-year old de la Hoya, whose cousin is Hall of Fame boxer and current promoter Oscar de la Hoya.
The teenaged featherweight scored a knockdown 17 seconds into the contest, though it proved to be an anomally. Marrero dusted himself off and proved to be a tough nut to further crack. de la Hoya picked up on this and went into boxing mode. He handled himself well, never allowing Marrero a moment to believe he stood a chance.
de la Hoya improves to 4-0 (3KO); Marrero falls to 1-2-1 (0KO).
Gerald Washington picked up his fourth straight knockout win, though it's entirely possible that the next move for his opponent will be to file a formal protest.
A flush shot to the chin led the way for a fight ending rally, but it was a sweeping right hand while Scott was down on one knee that produced the end to their co-feature bout. For the moment, the result stands as a 2nd round knockout for Washington.
The bout was a rare occasion where the 6'6" Washington was at a height disadvantage, but had no problem finding the chin of Scott, whose height (6'8") was really all he brought to the table.
Washington went to town in round two, landing several bombs on Scott. A straight right had the Houston-based heavyweight in trouble, forcing him to take a knee in efforts to clear his head. However, aged referee Lou Moret was slow to get in between the fighters in time to rule a knockdown, leaving enough time for Washington to load up and launch a right half-hook, half-uppercut on a defenseless Scott. The dazed heavyweight went down, attempted to rise and fell again to the canvas in prompting the stopage.
The official time was 1:40 of round two.
Washington improves to 12-0 (9KO) with the win, assuming the final verdict stands. Scott falls to 16-2-0-1NC (10KO), with his only other loss coming in his pro debut.
Dominic Breazeale was forced to go the distance for the first time in his young career but remains undefeated. The 2012 U.S. Olympic heavyweight boxer was extended eight rounds by veteran Nagy Aguilera and forced to settle for a wide decision win.
Scores were 80-72 and 79-73 (twice) in the Fox Sports 1-televised opener.
Breazeale appeared to be on his way to his 10th knockout in as many tries on several occasions. Aguilera absorbed amazingly well, but took several heavy and flush punches in the early rounds, at time prompting referee Raul Caiz Sr. to give a long, hard look to ensure the fighter's safety wasn't being compromised.
As the rounds wore on, Breazeale's punch output and accuracy gradually decreased. Aguilera managed to get in a few licks, even stunning the unbeaten Californian on a couple of occasions, but never to the point of threatening to turn the tide.
Breazeale advances to 10-0 (9KO) with the win, his first of 2014. Aguilera snaps a modest two-fight win streak, as he falls to 19-8 (13KO).
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox