Teon Kennedy & Jason Sosa Win at Bally’s in AC Saturday
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Teon Kennedy & Jason Sosa Win at Bally’s in AC Saturday
By Ken Hissner at ringside, Doghouse Boxing (June 3, 2013)

Teon Kennedy
Teon Kennedy
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Teon “The Technician” Kennedy, 18-2-2 (7), of Philadelphia, lived up to his nickname Saturday at Bally’s Casino in Atlantic City, NJ, completely outclassing Ecuadorian Carlos Vinan, 10-10-5 (2), of Newark, NJ, over 10 rounds in the junior lightweight division. Peltz Boxing put on the 7 card show with J Russell Peltz and Brittany Rogers doing the matchmaking.

Both boxers had been off for over a year and though showing signs of rust in missing some combination’s, Kennedy was too fast and too on target for the usually durable Vinan who struggled to make it out of the 10 th and final round. Kennedy didn’t use the ring much in the first half of the fight but had Vinan chasing him and getting countered in the second half.

Vinan was frustrated throughout in not being able to land many solid punches on Kennedy. In the 8 th round a Kennedy left hook rattled Vinan. In the 9 th a 3-punch combination started the final effort to stop Vinan as he was out on his feet. In the 10 th and final round there was a concern if Vinan should be allowed out of his corner but his heart won out.

Kennedy didn’t really apply the pressure to go for a knockout until the final 30 seconds of the round dropping Vinan with a combination but Vinan was determined to go the distance and did. “I used a solid body attack and it paid off,” said Kennedy. Whether he stays at 130 or back to 126 is questionable but not 122.

Though this writer saw it a shutout for Kennedy the judges had it 99-90 (twice) and 98-91 all for Kennedy. Ricky Vera was the referee. There was talk of an October bout for Kennedy on a big card out west. It was good to see co-manager Jim Williams back on the scene with co-manager Doc Nowicki who was overcoming some health problems of his own but always at the forefront. The Hinnant brothers Wade & Randy handled the corner. Larry Tornambe did his usual find job of ring announcing.

In the fight of the night were junior lightweights scheduled for 8 rounds in Camden’s Jason Sosa, 9-1-3 (5), and Georgian Geogi Kevlishvili, 12-7 (3), out of Philly giving the crowd something to yell about. The latter can’t catch a break when it comes to and easy opponent and Sosa was no exception.

“ I was switching to southpaw when he caught me,” said Sosa. As he sat on the canvas more shocked than hurt he was up as world class referee Steve “Double SS” Smoger counted to 8. Smoger was just back from Poland and always a fan’s favorite. By the end of the round Sosa was back in control but the round cost him a couple of points.

In the 3 rd Sosa landed a good right uppercut getting the attention of his opponent. At the bell both landed exchanges. In the 4 th Kevlishvili landed a right to the head and Sosa nodded in acknowledgement. As he turned southpaw he was caught by a Sosa right hand that had him out while on the ropes. Two more punches followed as he stood there “frozen” before hitting the canvas. He struggled to get to his feet and Smoger wisely stopped it at 2:21 of the 4 th round.

The loser complained he was all right but that fell on deaf ears to all. “I knew he was out when I hit him,” said Sosa. That’s 8 fights in a row without a defeat for Sosa which includes a pair of draws. He’s an action packed fighter who was not in an easy fight.

Philly’s Jesse “Hard Work” Hart, 7-0 (6), continues his road to a future championship. He is a “can’t miss” prospect who never looked better than he did tonight in destroying Thomas Turner, 3-4 (2), of Caldwell, ID, at 2:15 of the 1 st round.

A left hook (like his father Cyclone’s?) dropped Turner midway. Hart doesn’t paw his jab like too many boxers today but puts something on it when he snaps it out. Tall for a super middleweight he has it all including a champion’s personality.

Hart landed 14 consecutive punches before referee Vera called a halt as Turner was eating too much leather with no return in site. It looked like an Oklahoma tornado eastern style as Hart would not let up on his opponent going for the 1 st round stoppage.

“ I knew it wouldn’t go 2,” said Hart. His corner is filled with years of experience in Fred “Herc” Jenkins, Cyclone Hart and Danny Davis. If Hart keeps his head on his shoulders he will have a crown on it down the road!

In a good middleweight scheduled for 6 Ismael “Tito” Garcia, 5-0 (2), of Millville, NJ, overcame a cut on outside of his left eye suffered from an accidental butt in the 1 st round to “wipe” the smile off of Alando Swain’s, 5-3 (1), of Trenton, NJ, face, by the 4 th dropping him with a left hook. Though not the original opponent, Garcia overcame Swain’s aggression while playing off of it with on target punches having Swain out on his feet in the 5 th .

In the 6 th and final round while in his own corner Garcia landed a devastating short right that had Swain down on his knees. As he struggled pulling himself up by the ropes with his back toward his opponent referee Smoger wisely called a halt protecting Swain from any further damage at 2:26 of the round. All 3 judges had it 49-45 after 5 rounds for Garcia. With more activity he will be a known force in Atlantic City. He is tall with long reach and a good finisher as he progresses.

Philly’s Anthony “Bad Boy” Burgin, 4-0 (1), seemed to have his way in all 4 rounds at junior lightweight against a worthy opponent in Sri Lanka’s Nuwan Jayakody, 1-1 (1), out of Washington, DC. Burgin rocked his opponent as early as the 1 st round with a left hook. In the 2 nd Jayakody got Burgin’s attention with an overhand right to the head.

By the 3 rd round the nose of Jayakody’s was bleeding with Burgin landing a hard straight right just prior to the bell. Both fighters exchanged right hands in the 4 th and final round. Burgin’s 4-punch body work continued to hurt his opponent.

“ I train out of Cherry Hill, NJ, now,” said Burgin. He didn’t feel he had to go for the knockout like too many young fighters do at the start of their career. Debra Barnes and Alan Rubenstein had it 40-36 as did this writer while Hilton Whitaker scored it 39-37 all for Burgin. Vera was the referee.

Prospect Sultahn Staton, 2-0 (2), suffered a cut from a clash of heads early in the 1 st round giving his opponent Sidell Blocker, 1-6-1 (0), some false hopes of an early win between these Philly lightweights. As the blood ran down the side of his face from outside the left eye Staton continued the attack pulling out the fight at 2:59 of the 1 st round as Blocker was flat on his back. Referee Vera waved it off.

In the opening fight between heavyweights with no amateur fights Dante Selby, 1-0-1 (0), of Philly ruined the debut of southpaw Dan Pasciolla, 0-1 (0), Brick, NJ, over 4 rounds. Rubenstein had it 40-36 while Whitaker and Barnes scored it 39-37 for Selby. Smoger was the referee.
Ken Hissner responds to all his emails at: kenhissner@gmail.com

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