|Teon Kennedy Blast Snow in Philly!
By Ken Hissner at ringside, Doghouse Boxing (July 21, 2008) DoghouseBoxing.com
Two unbeaten super bantamweights met at the New Alhambra in South Philly Friday night in a showdown of top prospects on the east coast. They knew each other in the 2003 and 2004 Golden Gloves finals. Teon Kennedy was the smaller of the two then at 112 to Thomas Snow’s 119. Kennedy had won the National title in 2004 and last night proved to be the better of the two as he scored a knockout at 1:21 of the 2nd round.
The 1st round was a war with the southpaw Snow 10-1 (8) from Capitol Heights, Maryland putting a mouse under Kennedy’s 9-0 (5) right eye. Kennedy landed several lead right hands gaining Snow’s respect. Kennedy, the Philly native, had his cut man and co-manager Jimmy Williams putting the end swell on immediately. In the 2nd round it was all business as usual for Kennedy as he took it to Snow. He started with a right hand followed by a left and three more right hands as Snow slumped to the canvas. Referee Steve Smoger wisely stepped in to prevent any more damage in this 8 round scheduled bout. “I trained hard for this fight. He’s a tough kid. He stung me in the 1st round though I wasn’t hurt,” said Kennedy. His other co-manager Doc Nowicki stated “he can fight between 122 and 130”. He added, “when we took this fight Teon was excited having known Snow from the amateurs”. This was Kennedy’s first main event for his promoter Peltz Boxing. The place after all the cheering was like the Phillies winning the pennant. Everyone was smiling and slapping hands. One of their long time local favorites had stepped up and was victorious. It seems Kennedy has found his best weight at 122. He is trained by Wade and Randy Hinnant. Wade said “He is so coachable. He knows how to execute. He makes us look good.”
The semi-windup featured the return of South Philly native Chuckie ‘The Professor’ Mussachio 12-0-1 (5) now living in Wildwood, New Jersey. It would be his former hometown debut against the always tough Richie Stewart 14-6-2 (8) of New Castle, Delaware. It was the retreating Mussachio painting a picture with his left hand stopping Stewart in his tracks throughout the 8 rounder. Stewart had a very good body attack but didn’t seem to land much to the head except in the 2nd round. This punch seemed to anger Mussachio to the point that he started throwing punches in bunches backing Stewart into the ropes until he hit the canvas. “It was more of a slip than anything else,” said Stewart. “I just couldn’t pull the trigger. He had that jab working so well,” Stewart added. Mussachio who enters the ring every fight to the Sinatra tune ‘Fly me to the Moon’ wearing a black brim hat had quite a following in the crowd. This light heavyweight match-up had the fans cheering throughout. “A fight is won or lost far away from the witnesses, out on the road and in the gym long before I dance under those lights”, said Mussachio. He then gave Ali credit for that quote. The judges scored it 78-73 (as did this writer), 77-74 and 76-75 all for the winner Mussachio.
Mussachio was a former two time National Collegiate Boxing Association champion at Lock Haven. His father Al is head trainer with Bill Johnson, father of the late former lightweight champion Leavander and doing the cut’s Philly’s own Joey ‘Eye’ Intrieri. Mussachio is also a special-ed teacher which has prevented him from coming to Philly before due to time restrictions. It’s hoped he will return to his native city in the future.
The show opener featured Philly’s Anthony Flores 3-0 (1) a former 2005 and 2007 state Golden Gloves champion who countered his more experienced opponent Roman Guevara 8-17-2 (6) of Grand Rapids, well with combinations scoring knockdowns in rounds 2, 3 and 4 winning easily. At 19, he certainly stepped up in this one. Guevara has a knockout victory over then (13-0) Jorge Paez, Jr., son of the former champion.
Southpaw Luis Esquilin 1-0 of Philly, made his debut a winning one over Tommy Garcia 2-2 (1) of Hartford in a super featherweight 4 rounder. Garcia landed so few punches it made Esquilin’s first fight an easy one.
Dennis Hasson 3-0 (1) of Kensington, remained unbeaten in a super middleweight 4 rounder using a good jab and left hook in the 1st round keeping his opponent Roberto Irrizarry 2-5 (2) of Orlando at bay. Hasson had Irrizarry rocked several times in rounds 2 and 4. Hasson suffered a small hairline cut from a head butt in the final round. It seemed Hasson could have put his opponent away if there was one more round. All judges had it scored 40-36 for Hasson. Hasson, Kennedy and Mussachio have all fought for Northern Michigan University, with Mussachio earning his masters there. Hasson is also trained by the brother Hinnant who also train among others Chazz Witherspoon and USBA middleweight champion Lujuan Simon. Co-manager Buddy Osborn serves as cut man and while serving the same capacity for IBF cruiser champ Steve Cunningham, while in addition being the co-trainer.
A disappointing cruiser match had Philly natives Larry Robinson 10-3 (7) and Simon ‘One Punch’ Carr in a 6 rounder. Robinson tried but Carr seemed more content in making it a wrestling match, diving into Robinson and holding throughout. In the last round with Robinson showing fatigue Carr made a small effort to land his ‘one punch’. The judges had it 59-55, 60-54 and somehow 57-57. Ringside writers were divided.
The final bout was Martinus Clay 12-18-4 (4) now living in nearby Norristown, formerly of Wilson, North Carolina, in a bloody battle with Shawn Purdy 3-5 (3), Detroit, who was cut while showing plenty of heart but wasn’t allowed out for the 4th.
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