Boxing’s “The All-American Prizefighter” Rob Calloway (74-7-1, 58 KOs), of St. Joseph’s, Missouri, only strengthened his position as a cruiserweight contender in all 4 organizations with a sensational 9th round knockout at 3:05 of the round over previously unbeaten Juan Carlos Robles (9-1, 4 KOs), Waynesboro, Virginia, Saturday night with a packed house at the Day’s Inn, Allentown, Pennsylvania.
King’s Promotions, with Ty McNeill as matchmaker, put on a crowd pleasing show that had the fan’s screaming from the opening bout until the final one. The fan’s included former WBC heavyweight champion Hasim Rahman, who is also trained by Marshall Kauffman, trainer of Calloway. After the first round he went to the corner and offered his words of advice to “double up on the right hand.” What a right hand Calloway has.
Not to mention a rock hard left jab. This was Calloway’s 12th straight win, 11 by knockout. Only heavyweight Terry Smith (30-3-1) went the distance.
On the Monday prior to the fight this writer went to King’s Gym, in Reading, and saw a pretty sick Calloway slowly improving from a bad cold that kept him out of the gym the previous week. It was quite obvious he had a breathing problem, but the show must go on. Calloway, like his trainer, Kauffman, both are old school. No excuses.
Robles, with a large following at ringside, all the way from Virginia, came to fight. Considering he hadn’t gone beyond 6 rounds before, he was in the fight on an even basis for the first 4 rounds. Kurt Wolfheimer of Fights News even had him ahead.
Calloway rocked Robles twice in the opening round with right hands hoping to make a short night of it considering his physical condition. It seemed to bring out the best of Robles who came back with his own offense in the last 30 seconds of the round. In the 2nd round Robles seemed to outhustle Calloway who later said “I never make excuses, but I was pacing myself through the first 4 rounds due to my breathing condition.” Robles rocked Calloway with 10 seconds to go in the round.
In the 3rd round Calloway used his jab to control the round, always setting Robles up for the right hand as he kept moving to the right of his opponent. In the 4th round Robles showed a good jab of his own causing Calloway’s nose to bleed. The smell of blood only encouraged the Virginia biker who boasted having cut off his own finger with a wood chisel, Mohawk cut and ponytail made him look like something out of a warrior movie. He was more than some club fighter, but a skilled one with limited fights.
In the 5th round, Calloway took over the fight rocking Robles with a straight right hand that had his opponent seriously dazed at the bell. In the 6th round with encouragement from his corner Calloway went right hand crazy and had Robles on the receiving end throughout. “I knew it was going to be a long night, the way this guy took a shot,” said Calloway.
In the 7th round with Robles still dangerous with a good left hook, Calloway simply outlanded him bringing blood from Robles nose. In the 8th round Calloway came out with finish written all over his demeanor forcing Robles to the ropes throwing caution to the wind. With approximately 5 seconds to go in the round Calloway hit Robles with a devastating right hand that put Robles down in Calloway’s own corner. The referee Gary Rosato counted Robles out at 3:05 of the round.
It took about 15 minutes before Robles who was helped to the stool in Calloway’s corner was able to get to his feet. “I couldn’t get away from his right hand,” said Robles.
A humble Calloway being thanked the crowd for adopting a fighter from St. Joseph, Missouri, and planned to bring his family east for a vacation. “I would like to get a fight with WBA champion Firat Arslan who is planning on defending his title May 3rd in Germany,” said Calloway. “I am 38 years old, with 82 fights, and feel this is my year for a title shot,” added Calloway.
The semi 6 rounder had 2 local fighters keeping the fans on their feet for most of the fight. Manuel Guzman (5-5, 2 KOs), Lancaster, scored a knockdown from a left hook with about 15 seconds to go in the fight to pull off the win. The decision left the fans with mixed feelings for their own Allentown junior middleweight Jorge Delgado (4-8, 2 KOs), seemed to have jabbed his way to victory for most of the rounds having Guzman’s nose bleeding half way through. Guzman had received a cut outside of his right eye in the 3rd round and had the ring doctor check it out. When time resumed Guzman went on the attack fearing a possible stoppage. This fight had rematch written all over it. Judges Steve Weisfeld and Dewey LaRosa had it 58-55, while Robert Gross a closer 57-56.
Former popular local boxer, now referee, Art Bayliss was the referee.
A 4 round middleweight match had Charlottesville, Virginia’s George Rivera (8-1, 3 KO’s) a winner over late substitute Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor (12-14, 6 KOs), New Castle, Delaware, due to a very good left jab. Judges Weisfeld and Gross had it 39-37 with LaRosa at 40-36. Referee was Rosato.
Jesus Barbosa (3-0-1, 3 KOs), Philadelphia, used a Tyson-like style to come back in the 2nd round after having his hands full in the first with the taller Shavaris Buie (0-4), Brooklyn, NY. Referee Rosato called a halt to this featherweight match at the end of the round when Buie complained of an injured hand.
Southpaw Julio Cesar Matthews (3-0, 2 KOs), Reading, came out of retirement after a 11 year absence to score knockdowns in the 2nd and 3rd rounds, before forcing referee Baylis to call a halt to Kevin Hood’s (5-8), Lancaster, night at 1:59 of the 3rd round. Matthews, shot by a stray bullet over 10 years ago while in a sports bar, has gone from super middleweight to cruiser, in posting a win against his heavyweight opponent. The victorious Matthews spent about an hour walking around greeting his many fans while still having his gloves on. One fan asked for his autograph which seemed to give Matthews more problems trying to use a pen, than he had in the ring that night.
Allentown’s Marvin Rivera (1-1-1) seemed to have his fight under control with Philadelphia’s Darus Hunter (2-7-1) with the help of a questionable knockdown over Hunter that had referee Rosato giving the 8 count to Hunter’s surprise. An accidental head butt in the 2nd round causing a bad cut under the left eye brow of Hunter forced the referee to bring in the doctor who called it a no-contest at the 1:07 mark of this middleweight bout.
The opening fight set a high standard to follow after the popular Reading featherweight Lucian Gonzalez (5-4-1) came back in the 2nd round, after losing the first to southpaw Vineash Rungea (2-10), of Brentford, London, to win the decision. Rungea was the perfect villain who kept the fans on their feet while taunting Gonzalez in the 4th round after obviously running out of gas. Judges Gross and Weisfeld had it 39-37 with LaRosa giving a surprising 40-36. This was the 2nd win for Gonsalez in 2 weeks. This earned him a return trip vacation to his native Puerto Rico. “I listened to my corner and knew I would come out with the win,” said Gonzalez through one of his trainers.
All in all it was a good night of action and hopefully King Promotions will return to the Day’s Inn, in Allentown, and Calloway will get that well deserved title bout in Germany.
This site was last updated 07/12/08