Evans and Witherspoon Win at Philly’s National Guard Armory
By Ken Hissner at ringside, Doghouse Boxing (Jan 30, 2011)
Philly’s “Pretty Boy” Coy Evans, 10-0-1 (2) extended his unbeaten streak to 11 Friday night at the Philadelphia National Guard Armory defeating Felipe Almanza, 18-20-4 (9), of Colombia, in a 6 round main event for Greg Robinson’s Power Productions.

Almanza fought for 2 rounds in this featherweight 6 rounder possibly taking the first round due to Evans shaking off almost 8 months of inactivity. The second round was close and then Almanza turned it into a track meet. Several times top referee Steve “Double SS” Smoger had to warn Almanza for low blows. Smoger speaks Spanish so there was no problem with understanding the warnings.

After the first low blow and an apology from Almanza “Bozy” Ennis yelled to his fighter Evans “don’t touch gloves”. It was now personal. “I knew the guy would run but with that many fights I hoped he would stand his ground,” said Evans. Just before the final bell Evans caught Almanza though moving away with a right hand that seemed to take his feet from the canvas.

Due to his inexperience Evans was not able to cut the ring off against the fleet footed veteran of over 40 fights. Almanza had gone the distance in a 6 with Philly’s Teon “The Technician” Kennedy and surprisingly the only disqualification was against Wilfredo Vazquez, Jr. Evans did enough to win all 6 rounds on the 3 judge’s scorecards 60-54. Evans is scheduled March 4th back at the Armory.

The show stealer in a 6 round light welterweight match was Tim Witherspoon, Jr., 6-1-1 (2), of Philadelphia. He follows in the footsteps of his dad the former 2-time world heavyweight champion who worked his corner, Uncle Anthony and cousin Chazz. The opponent was Kywame Hill, 1-7 (1) who hadn’t scored a win since his pro debut back in 2001. Anytime Fred Jenkins is in the corner you know his fighters come to fight and Hill did make it interesting. His opponents are 21-3-3 overall.

The young Witherspoon who has had 3 wins in the UK where his dad is a regular visitor returned to the Armory where he posted his first win back in October of 2008. Hill came out to fight to the surprise of Witherspoon. He even had a triple jab working to take the first round. In the second round it was a battle with one of the judges giving Hill the round. The other 2 may have been influenced by the right hand Witherspoon landed just before the bell rocking Hill.

In the third round Hill had Witherspoon covering up in a neutral corner with a flurry of body punches. Eventually Witherspoon worked his way out of trouble and nailed Hill with 4 right hands that had Hill holding onto the top rope not wanting to go down. Referee Hurley McCall was criticized for either not separating the fighters due to the infraction of holding the ropes or not stopping the fight which most at ringside thought should be done except this writer.

In the fourth Hill came out southpaw to confuse Witherspoon until Hill’s head was clear. In the fifth with both running low on gas they were still exchanging leather. In the sixth and final round it was all Witherspoon who would take the decision on the cards of Steve Weisfeld 60-54, George Hill, 59-54 and Rich Hopkins, Jr. by 59-55 as did this writer. “Forget his record this guy was tough,” said Witherspoon.

Promising southpaw prospect Venroy July, 6-0-1 (2), of Suitland, MD, won every round over Joe Broken Rope, 2-1 (0), of Butte, MT, in this 4 round cruiserweight fight. The rounds were reduced from 6 to 4 when Pedro Martinez fell out and was replaced by Broken Rope. Broken Rope claimed to have had over 50 amateur bouts and said he hurt his right shoulder throwing an overhand right.

July showed his power when a right jab reddened Broken Ropes left eye in the first round. Like Evans, July hadn’t fought for almost 8 months. With a jumping in low opponent it wasn’t easy to nail Broken Rope to the soft body he showed as much as he wanted in the first 2 rounds. The body shots he landed took everything out of Broken Rope in the second round. In the third and fourth rounds Broken Rope ran around the ring almost in the same fashion Almanza did in the main event.

All 3 judges had it 60-54 for July. Going into the third round Broken Rope came out with the towel over his shoulder as if he would surrender at any time but he hung in there. “I didn’t think he would run so much. I hope to be more active in 2011,” said July. Antonio “Star Child” Reese assisted Davis in the corner. McCall was the referee.

July was born in St. Catherine, Jamaica, and turned professional in mid 2009 and will be 28 next month. By day he is a corporate attorney in DC. By night 6 days a week his trainer Adrian Davis said it best. “He is a clean liver. He doesn’t smoke or drink and goes to the gym 6 days a week and is a really hard worker,” said Davis. July reversed his draw decision and has fought in 4 different states and the District of Columbia in his 7 fights. “It’s good to get back in there. I didn’t think he would run so much,” said July. He has fought several times for the show’s matchmaker Rene Aikens.

Amir Shabazz, 1-0 (0), of Philadelphia made his debut taking all 4 rounds from Phillip Hannan, 0-5 (0), of the Bronx, NY, in a fight that had Shabazz listed almost 20 pounds lighter. Since he towered over the never stop trying Hannan there must have been a foul-up in the announcement. All scores were 40-36.

In the opener Georgiy “the Chemist” Guralnik, 1-0 (0), from the Ukraine, fighting out of Philly, fought a one handed boxer in Michael Davis, 0-7 (0), of Cincinnati, OH, who seemed to refused to throw his right hand. Whether he hurt it sometime in the fight is unknown. By the fourth round Guralnik was tired from throwing all the punches in this one. He was 10 pounds over the 200 limit and Davis was the same under. Smoger was the referee in this one as Guralnik won by scores of 40-36 twice and 40-35.

There was a good crowd but the round card girls didn’t have their round card signs and we’re just thankful they didn’t come out before the first round since they were showing the round on their fingers.

Philly’s top ring announcer Larry Tournabe was given the color job on the television coverage instead of being the ring announcer. Only trouble was no television crew showed up. He kept asking us in press row were the cameras hidden somewhere. Halfway through the show he was heading back to DE.

March 4th is listed as the next show at the Armory with Coy Evans headlining. Only thing is Derek “Pooh” Ennis is headlining that night at Atlantic City. Since “Bozy” Ennis trains both this writer asked how he was going to be in 2 places at one time. “Well you know whose corner I’ll be in,” said Ennis. No sense questioning Philly’s “Trainer of the Year” or the fighter’s “Co-managers of the Year” Moz Gonzalez or Eddie Woods. It was brought to this writer’s attention by another writer that the one corner only won “one round” in all of the 5 fights. Luck of the draw?

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