Vito Mielnicki Jr. continues to show poise and maturity well beyond his youth.
The 18-year old welterweight prospect from Roseland, New Jersey delivered an impressive performance in stopping Mexico’s Noe Lopez in the third round of their Fox-televised bout Saturday evening at Shrine Auditorium & Expo in Los Angeles.
Mielnicki floored Lopez in round two and went on the attack in the ensuing round in forcing the stoppage at 2:50 of round three.
The bout came on the heels of Mielnicki returning to his Jersey roots for the tail end of preparation after having spent six months under the tutelage of Joe Goossen. The effects of those “boot camp”-style training camps were well on display in just his second scheduled eight-round affair.
“It was great (working with Goossen),” Mielnicki told Fox Sports’ Heidi Androl after the bout. “I’m happy with my performance. Everything came full circle.”
Mielnicki was in full control throughout the brief affair, with Lopez struggling to keep pace.
The lone knockdown of the bout came late in round two. Mielnicki connected with a clean right hand, which sent Lopez to the canvas and seemingly in trouble even upon rising to his feet. Mielnicki remained poised, continuing to thrown and land in combinations while not pressing for the knockout finish.
That moment would come organically.
Lopez was in retreat mode while Mielnicki was on the attack late in round three. A barrage of punches caused referee Gerald White to intervene, without protest from Lopez who falls to 10-4-1 (4KOs).
Mielnicki improves to 8-0 (5KOs) with the win, his first of the new year after managing four victories in as many fights in 2020. The teenaged talent delivered a statistical wipeout, landing 58-of-101 total punches (57%) according to Compubox, compared to just 22-of-165 (13%) for Lopez.
The bout served as the opener of a Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on Fox tripleheader, headlined by former two-time super middleweight titlist Anthony Dirrell (33-2-1, 24KOs) in a 12-round semifinal eliminator versus Kyrone Davis (15-2, 6KOs).
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox