Cherry returns with win!
Photos by Scott Foster
Starfight Productions hosted Edner "Cherry Bomb" Cherry’s return to his home in Tampa, Florida, in an ESPN2 televised fight against the speedy Wes Ferguson.
The standing-room-only crowd cheered as Cherry entered the ring with a parade of his titles in front of him and gospel music trumpeting. Wes Ferguson was accompanied by the pound-for-pound king, Floyd Mayweather Jr. and his trainer, Roger Mayweather.
From the opening bell, Cherry smothered his opponent and used his size to keep Ferguson from finding his distance. Cherry became a little too aggressive for the referee's liking in the second and was warned for using his forearm. By the third round, Cherry started landing his signature right hand, and Ferguson still could not find an answer for Cherry's constant press.
In the fifth, Ferguson found some room and started landing the jab from the outside. The success didn't last past the round though, as Cherry brought back the pressure in the sixth. A big overhand right opened a cut over Ferguson's left eye and sent him staggering back to the ropes. Cherry was wrapped up before he could finish off his hurt opponent.
The "Cherry Bomb" used his size to push a very tired Ferguson to the floor in the opening of the seventh. Ferguson seemed to find his second wind in the eighth and started trading with the aggressive Cherry. Despite Ferguson's best efforts, Cherry continued to landed many unanswered combinations to Ferguson's head.
Ferguson remained on his feet, but lost to the judges' scores of 96-94x2 and 98-92. Cherry improved to 22-5-2, 10 KOs, while Ferguson dropped to 16-2-1, 4 KO's. It was made clear over the 10-round contest that the aggressive Cherry, who won ESPN's Boxer of the Year award last year, had returned from his disappointing showing against Paulie Malignaggi.
Montano outpoints Brownfield
ESPN opened their night of boxing with an absolute war between jr. welterweights Ramon Montano (12-3-2) and lefty Lowell Brownfield (9-4, 3 KOs).
Montano constantly landed big on the inside and won out on the trades the boxers exchanged. In the fourth round, the tides seemed to change when Brownfield found his distance and started landing good combinations to the head. By the last three rounds, Montano grew tired and Brownfield landed four- and five-punch combinations. The fight went the distance of eight rounds with Montano winning by scores of 78-74x2 and 79-7.
Barnett & Droz slug it out
Two local heavyweights, Jason Barnett (9-4, 4 KOs) and Moses Droz (13-6, 10 KOs), thrilled the crowed with a high action four-round bout.
Droz was constantly looking for the one big punch, but rarely found it. Barnett used his speed and jab to keep his distance early on and scored from the outside. Droz found more success on the inside in the second round and landed hooks to the body. Barnett took the fight to Droz in the third and blasted him with shots on the inside and out. Sensing he was down on the cards, Droz fought a very aggressive fourth round, but to no avail. Judges scored the fight 38-38, 39-37, and 40-36 in favor of Barnett.
The brawl minded Jenna "Cowgirl" Shiver proved she could box as well by defeating Mercedes Mercury (3-10, 1 KO) with a great jab and good combinations to the head and body. All three judges scored the fight 40-36.
Local light middleweight Tim Leonard improved to 4-1-1, 2 KOs with a good counter left hook that left Robert Newbiggin with a swollen right eye and knocked him down in the second. Judges scored the fight 40-35.
In other undercard fights Ali Tareh dropped to 7-7-4, 4 KOs against Eli Addison (9-3, 3 KOs) with judges' scores of 58-56 and 59-55x2.
St. Pete's Jr. Welterweight prospect, Derrick Samuels (11-3-1, 2 KOs) battered Travis Hartman (8-7-1, 6 KOs) around the ring for six rounds, forcing him to take a knee in both the fourth and fifth rounds. His speed even drew Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s attention, as the newly crowned WBC light middleweight champion begin to cheer for Samuels who swept the score cards with the score of 60-54x3.