By Phil Rivera
New York, New York- If you thought Glen Tapia’s sudden absence from the non-televised portion of tonight’s Gennady Golovkin-Daniel Geale card at Madison Square Garden would have a great impact on its excitement value, you were wrong. Although the dark show was highlighted by boxers like Ola Afolabi—whose (21-3-4, 9 KOs) record doesn’t exactly put him on a “one’s to watch list”—and green pros like the (5-0, 3 KOs) Julian Rodriguez, it proved to have some pop.
4-round Junior Welterweights: Julian Rodriguez (5-0, 3 KOs) defeats Yankton Southern (4-6, 4 KOs) via RD 1 KO.
The New Jersey native Julian Rodriguez came out to a loud applause from the early birds and responded immediately. Seconds into the bout he landed a counter left hand that stopped Southern in his tracks. After a short exchange, Rodriguez knocked the over-matched Southern out with a left hand to the body 43 seconds into the first.
8-round Junior Middleweights: Dusty Hernandez-Harrison (23-0, 12 KOs) defeats Wilfredo Acuna (15-15, 12 KOs) via unanimous decision.
Round one was dominated by the taller Hernandez-Harrison who used his jab and straight right to control the frame. The crowd began to grow frustrated after an uneventful second and Hernandez –Harrison responded by landing some clubbing overhand rights in the third. Hernandez-Harrison had Acuna hurt in the fourth after landing a straight right, but failed to answer the crowds call to finish him. The Nicaraguan underdog showed some spirit at the end of the fifth and beginning of the sixth by getting inside of Hernandez-Harrison’s guard and at times backing up the overcautious favorite. Hernandez-Harrison seemed perfectly fine with carrying his 14 loss opponent to the final bell and did nothing in the final two rounds to finish him. When it was all said and done all three judges scored the bout 80-72 for Hernandez-Harrison.
10-round Cruiserweights: Ola Afolabi (21-3-4, 10 KOs) defeats Anthony Caputo Smith (15-4, 10 KOs) via RD 3 TKO.
A flabby Smith came out as if he had no intentions of going 12 and paid for it. He charged at Afolabi with his head down and landed some looping shots, but caught the worst of it in the form of Afolabi uppercuts. Round two was a brawl with both fighters having their moments; Afolabi added a left hook to his arsenal and sent Smith to his corner bloodied at the end of the frame. Afolabi battered Smith in round three with his jab and knocked him down twice with right crosses. Smith’s corner stopped the bout before the fourth could begin.