Shiflett, Arementa score KOs in debuts

Pearson stops Cantu in main bout 1st round

Boxing

June 07, 2000|By Alan Goldstein | Alan Goldstein,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

It was a night of impressive firsts at Rosedale Gardens last night where the new promotional team of Keith French and Jake Smith drew a sellout crowd of 650 to their initial professional boxing show, highlighted by the spectacular knockout debuts of local heavyweight Russ Shiflett and Silver Spring junior middleweight Jorge Arementa.

It was easy to overlook unbeaten Maryland lightweight Lamont Pearson's cakewalk over Jay Cantu (14-4), of San Antonio, in the scheduled eight-round main event.

Pearson (12-0-1), not known for his power, knocked Cantu flat on his back with a straight right. Cantu made little effort to rise and referee Gary Camponeschi waved an end to the bout just as the bell ended the first round.

New Jersey junior middleweight Felix Diaz (6-1-1) piled up an early lead with his light combinations and survived a late rally by Baltimore's Charles Clark (11-6-1) in a lively six-rounder.

The shorter Clark misfired repeatedly with his hooks in the first three rounds but began scoring telling punches in the last two rounds, forcing Diaz to take cover.

Armenta showed boxing skill and power in disposing of Baltimore's Matt Hill (3-5) at 2:10 of the second round.

The rangy Armenta floored Hill with a vicious left hook. Hill bounced up quickly, but Armenta followed with a barrage of punches and referee Bill Holmes intervened.

Shiflett's pro bow was more spectacular, stopping Tim Taylor, of Temple Hills, also making his debut, at 1:17 of the first round.

Russian native Marat Suyuntayev (2-0), now fighting out of Catskill, N.Y. under Kevin Rooney, who schooled Mike Tyson, appeared to get a break from the judges in winning a majority decision over Kenny Head (3-1), Landover, in their passionless four-round welterweight match.

The six-bout card began in bizarre fashion with two unschooled middleweights making their pro debuts. George Martinez, who was getting the worst of it against Steve Garrett, of Columbia. Martinez vented his frustration after losing his mouthpiece late in the first round. He then landed his best punch - a right squarely on the chin of referee John Gradowski, who had no choice but to disqualify him. The commission will hold up Martinez's purse.

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