Mtagwa defeats Valtierra in rematch! - Boxing
By Ken Hissner (March 10, 2008) Doghouse Boxing  
The “Tanzanian Tiger” Rogers Mtagwa, 24-12 (17), repeated his victory of 2007 with a 10 round decision over Mexico’s Aldo Valtierra, 24-10 (13), at the New Alhambra, South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Friday night. This was a Don Chargin Production with Peltz Boxing over Telefutura with at least one Spanish fighter in all of the bouts except one.

Mtagwa rocked Valtierra with about 8 seconds to go in the first round and for good measure rocked him after the bell
setting the stage for a rough battle in South Philly.

Valtierra came back in the 3rd and 4th rounds to even the score. It would not be an easy fight for the once USBA featherweight champion Mtagwa. The fighters took turns trying for a knockout. Valtierra was the second substitute for Mtagwa. Mtagwa’s split decision win last July picked up where it left off before a packed house. Referee Wayne Hedgepeth finally took away a point from Valtierra in the 8th for continuous rabbit punching. Mtagwa who fights out of South Philly is trained by former top middleweight Bobby “Boogaloo” Watts. Judges Lynne Carter and Joe Pasquale had it 96-93 while Dave Greer also gave it to Mtgawa 97-92. Mtagwa is ranked 13th by the IBF.

Philly amateur standout Teon Kennedy, 8-0 (4), made it 8 straight with his first 8 rounder over Castulo Gonzalez, 9-5 (3), out of Lynn, Massachusetts via Guatemala in a hard fought featherweight battle. Kennedy’s jab controlled the fight. Judges Carter and Pasquale agreed again 78-74 while Greer had it a closer 77-75. The referee was Gary Rosato. Kennedy’s style is old school being very workmanlike making him a favorite.

Victor Vasquez, 7-1 (4), with a large following had his hands full winning a majority decision over Rami Ibraham, 2-7-1 (1), in this all Philly, lightweight fight. Ibraham smothered the more skilled Vasquez throughout the fight. Ibraham’s bull- like rushes received no deductions by referee Rosato to the displeasure of the Vasquez fans. Vasquez’s heavier punches caused a bad abrasion under the left eye of Ibraham, but did not deter him from being the aggressor in this 6 round bout. Pasquale’s 57-57 was outvoted by both Greer and Al Dorsey 59-55.

Kensington’s Dennis “The Assassin” Hasson, 1-0, made his long awaited debut winning all four rounds on the judges score cards over Portsmouth, Virginia’s John “The Baptist” Terry, 2-10-3 (1), in a super middleweight match. Hasson’s 100+ amateur bouts included a Ringside Tournament championship along with 4 years at Northern Michigan University under Philly’s Al Mitchell. Hasson’s jab and footwork were too much for the frustrated Terry who was rocked on several occasions by right hands. Terry’s last round wild over hand rights were avoided by Hasson, but an accidental head butt with 10 seconds to go in the bout caused Hasson to receive several stitches per his co-manager and second Buddy Osborn (Rock Gym). Co-manager Joe Hand, Sr. and trainer Wade Hinnant seemed pleased with their protégé’s performance even though the cut will keep him sidelined until May. This was the only bout without at least one Hispanic fighter.

Hasson was supported by a large vocal group of fans including IBF cruiserweight champion Steve Cunningham, who I had the pleasure of sitting next to during the show. Cunningham encouraged Hasson to go to the body. This is something Hasson will learn in time after defeating a much more experienced pro in his first outing.

The show opener marked the debut of Philly’s heavyweight Pedro Martinez, 1-0 (1), scoring a crushing win at 2:46 of the 2nd round over Kenyatte Ravenell, 1-3 (1), of New York City. After an earlier round knockdown Martinez had Ravenell helplessly on the ropes before referee Hedgepeth finally stopped the bout. The fury of punches from Martinez caused a large stir among the many fans.

Pottstown’s Travis Thompson, 2-1 (2), won his second straight by knockout at 1:56 of the 2nd round over competitive Emmanuel Roses, 0-2, of Puerto Rico in a lightweight match. Hedgepeth served as referee. Thompson’s well respected trainer is Marty Feldman who trained IBF light heavyweight champion “Prince” Charles Williams and the former middleweight title challenger Dave Tiberi who last month marked the 16th anniversary of his highly disputed split decision loss to IBF middleweight champ James Toney. It caused such a furor it lead to the Muhammad Ali Act. Tiberi is now a well respected promoter in the state of Delaware.

The last bout of the night was ended in just 1:42 of the 1st round when referee Rosato stopped the onslaught from debuting Anthony Flores, 1-0 (1), over Gustavo Dailey, 0-1, in an all Philly match-up of super featherweights. Flores had scored an earlier knockdown. Flores passed up a trip to Maryland in order to qualify for Colorado Springs. The former Golden Gloves champion was very impressive in his first start. 

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