Unbeaten New Haven, Conn., junior middleweight Jimmy Williams kept his perfect record intact Friday and stole the show on the undercard of ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights at Mohegan Sun Arena.
The event, presented by Banner Promotions in association with CES Boxing, featured four regional undercard bouts in addition to the televised quarterfinals of the junior middleweight Boxcino Tournament, originally established in 2014.
Facing a tough test against veteran slugger Eddie Caminero (7-9) of Lawrence, Mass., Williams (9-0-1, 5 KOs) fought through a sluggish stretch in the middle rounds before stopping Caminero at the 2-minute, 32-second mark in the fourth round of their scheduled six-round bout, his second win of 2015 and second in the last four weeks.
Known primarily for his punching power, the 34-year-old Caminero took the fight on just three days’ notice and found himself in trouble midway through the opening round courtesy of a hard right. Williams countered with two more rights, sending Cameniro wobbling toward the ropes trying to maintain his balance.
Caminero survived the round and then began building momentum in the second, at one point taunting Williams in an attempt to get him to exchange blows in the center of the ring. Williams obliged and wound up in a slugfest, which worked in Camerino’s favor.
The wily veteran out-boxed Williams in the second and third and began applying more pressure in the fourth until Williams found his distance and caught the hard-charging Caminero with a perfect left cross, sending Cameniro crashing to the canvas. Caminero scrambled to his feet quickly, but referee Miguel Cortez waived it off, giving Williams his second knockout win of the year.
“He’s a real tough fighter and that’s what I was expecting,” Williams said. “I tried to box him and got into a slugfest, but I got the knockout. It was great.
“He kept coming at me. It was a good experience. My hat’s off to him. He’s a tough fighter. I wasn’t hurt at all. I took some tough shots, but I can take shots. I made it harder than it needed to be, but I kept learning and got the win. Now I’m 9-0.”
Worcester, Mass., middleweight Khiary Gray-Pitts (5-0, 3 KOs) also kept his perfect record intact, stopping Rodrigo Almeida (1-2) of Woburn, Mass., at the end of the opening round. Gray-Pitts attacked Almeida to the body early and often, effectively cutting off the ring as Almeida tried to circle out of harm’s way. Almeida survived the final bell of the opening round, but retreated to his corner clutching his ribcage, prompting his corner to throw in the towel. The unbeaten Gray-Pitts now has two wins in 2015, both by first-round knockout.
Also on the undercard, lightweight Oscar Bonilla (3-0-2) of Bridgeport, Conn., fought to a majority draw against 19-year-old San Antonio prospect Angel Martinez (5-1-1). Judge Don Trella scored the fight 39-37 in favor of Bonilla while judges Peter Hary Jr. and Glenn Feldman each scored it 38-38.
Bonilla out-boxed Martinez in the opening round, but the remaining three were back-and-forth with each judge scoring differently throughout the rest of the fight. Hary Jr. gave the second round to Bonilla and the third to Martinez, whereas Trella scored the second in favor of Martinez and the third for Bonilla. Martinez also won the fourth round on two of the three judges’ scorecards.
New Bedford, Mass., Ray Oliveira Jr. (2-0, 1 KO) was also scheduled to fight on the undercard in a four-round bout against Ralph Johnson (1-3, 1 KO) of Worcester, Mass.