NEW YORK – Austin ‘Ammo’ Williams wasn’t leaving without a knockout.

The Houston-based middleweight turned an intended step-up in competition into a highlight reel performance, scoring a first-round knockout of Chordale Booker. Williams scored the bout’s lone knockdown late in the round, with Booker beating the count but unable to continue in forcing the stoppage at 2:25 of round one Saturday evening at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

The fight was tagged as a dangerous two-way test for the pair of middleweight prospects but Williams was confident all week of stealing the show. The 25-year-old southpaw let his hands go from the opening bell, with Stamford, Connecticut’s Booker (17-1, 7KOs) unable to respond or keep his foe at bay. Williams repeatedly scored with left hands and right hooks upstairs, twice rocking Booker while having him pinned along the ropes and with at least one sequence that could have been ruled a knockdown.

Williams eventually forced referee Charlie Finch to rule a knockdown when Booker was battered to the point of the ropes preventing his fall. Booker made it to his feet but staggered about, prompting Fitch to call the fight.

Williams improves to 11-0 (9KOs) with the win, picking up his third straight knockout all in a span of less than five months.

Skye Nicolson remains perfect in a pro career where she has barely had time to catch her breath.

The former amateur standout from Yatala, Australia went the distance for the third time in as many pro fights, earning a six-round shutout of Houston’s Shanecquia Paisley Davis. Judges Kevin Morgan (60-53), Tony Paolillo (60-53) and Waleska Roldan (60-53) all landed in favor of Nicolson in their featherweight bout.

Nicolson kept Davis (3-2, 0KOs) at the end of her jab for much of the contest, growing increasingly aggressive and gaining the approval of the passionate early-arriving fans. Davis looked for openings to drop her right hand but found herself constantly beaten to the punch by the quicker and slicker Nicolson.

Nicolson registered her first career knockdown seconds before the final bell. A straight left hand landed flush, sending Davis to the canvas though able to beat the count and make it to the finish line. The reward was the American featherweight suffering her second defeat in a span of her last three fights.

Nicolson improved to 3-0 (0KOs) with the win, with all three fights coming in a span of just eight weeks. The unbeaten 26-year-old turned pro on the March 5 undercard of legendary former four-division champ Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez in San Diego. Wedged in between was a six-round decision on March 26 in Leeds, England.

Reshat ‘The Albanian Bear’ Mati (12-0, 7KOs) was unable to deliver a knockout finish for his local fans.

The unbeaten welterweight from Staten Island went the distance for the third straight time, scoring an eight-round win over Joe Eli Hernandez. Judges Eric Marlinski, Don Trella and Martha Tremblay all scored in favor of Mati (12-0, 7KOs), who has not scored a knockout since fans have been permitted to attend fights following the pandemic.

Mati began well-intended, making things as uncomfortable as possible for Hernandez (12-2, 10KOs) and threatening to punish the Brownsville, Texas-based welterweight. The fight slowly devolved into a showcase performance for Mati, who potshotted and played to the crowd in lieu going for the knockout against an inviting foe. His desire to showboat and pose didn’t at all deter the crowd, who chanted his name throughout the eight-round affair.

Khalil Coe opened the show with a six-round, unanimous decision win over Kenosha, Wisconsin’s William Langston (6-3, 4KOs). Scores of 60-54, 59-55 and 58-56 all landed in favor of Coe (3-0-1, 2KOs), an unbeaten first-year pro from Flemington, New Jersey.

Headlining the show, undisputed lightweight champion Katie Taylor (20-0, 6KOs) of Bray, Ireland attempts her thirteenth overall title defense versus Brooklyn’s own record-setting, seven-division titlist Amanda Serrano (42-1-1, 30KOs).

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox