Ward Impresses, Pounds Miranda / Molina Takes Next Step!
By Coach “K” - May 16th, Oracle Arena, Oakland, California: 2004 Olympic Gold Medalist NABF and NABO Super Middleweight Title holder Andre S.O.G. Ward remained undefeated and put to rest any questions doubters held with a boxing, punching sometimes brawling unanimous decision over top ten ranked Edison “Pantera” Miranda, 32-4, 28Ko’s.
Article posted on 16.05.2009
Fighting before his Oakland hometown fans Ward opened up moving measuring the ring jabbing to Miranda’s body who assumed the role of the aggressor.. Miranda continued to come forward as Ward surveyed the ropes when in a two way exchange Miranda came in head first causing a small cut over Wards left eye. Ward fought through a cut which was ruled an accidental clash of heads even appearing inspired by the cut immediately switching roles becoming the aggressor Ward shortened the distance and began to turn Miranda beating him to the punch. S.O.G. would find his range punch his way inside. Once inside the two time U.S. Amateur Champion would fall to his right nullifying “Pantera’s” big right hand, an act he would do repeatedly eventually frustrating the former title challenger.
In the second round Miranda who battled some of the classes best in of Kelly Pavlik and Arthur Abraham continued to come forward but was very reserved in his punch output. Ward’s ring savy had the big Columbian of balance. Miranda added a couple of low blows to his repertoire while Ward alternated punching inside tight smothering Miranda’s power inside then moving out keeping “Pantera” at the end of his shots.
The third started with Miranda adding rabbit shots to the list then Ward putting and keeping Miranda at the end of his punches firing combinations leaving the rugged Columbian no alternative but to pound his chest and call for more.
In the fourth Ward took the fight inside at times mauling, pounding even pushing Miranda around. Feeling comfortable now Ward switched southpaw and began to bang Miranda to the body.
The fifth round set the theme for the rest of the fight with Ward walking Miranda around the ring into his shots then stepping up into the pocket banging away with both hands. Then Aa the 1:25 mark of the round moving back into a corner Ward walked “Pantera” into a big left uppercut turned the aggressive Columbian and scored with a big left hand.
Like a special forces fighter with his M234 mounted M16, Ward fired away with both hands. Switching between both stances S.O.G. sporadically launched some bombs keeping Miranda and his single shot M70 grenade launcher off balance. Even when inside Miranda’s range Ward used slick angles, quick foot, head movement and occasionally a good chin together with some intermittent power punching even physically dominating his foe controlling the action.
There was no doubt in the decision as the judges scores were read judge Marty Sammon 116-112, judges Steve English, and Marshall Walker scoring it as I did 119-109 for Ward. The performance should have opened the eyes of all nay sayers while projecting him into the top ten and into the center of the Super Middleweight sweepstakes. A Ward Bute, Froch, Bika, Andrade, Taylor or Allan Green fight would be interesting.
The semi main event featured rising undefeated junior lightweight star, puncher John Molina 17-0, 13Ko’s took his next step remaining with a second round Tko of veteran Frankie Archuleta 25-7-1, 14Ko’s.
The slow starting, at times defense lapsing Molina was beaten to the punch and hit with several looping right hands by the experienced Mexican early. Then at about the 1:00 mark of the second round after eating another Archuleta right Molina banged his smaller opponent with a heavy right to the body followed by a crisp left uppercut to the head rocking him before exploding pounding the Mexican veteran along the ropes with both hands, convincing him he stood no chance. The fight was called at of round 2:06 two by referee David Mendoza after Archuleta took a knee the rose shaking his head making it clear he did not want to continue.
Beating the experienced Archuleta who had been in with the likes of Rocky Juarez, Martin Honorio and Johnny Tapia twice doesn’t move the 5’10” Molina into top lightweights just yet but a “West versus East,” typical puncher / boxer match-up with 6 foot Jorge Teron 23-1-1, 15Ko’s who just revenged his only loss, a majority decision loss to Aldo Valtierra an Archuleta type the night before. The match up would certainly fill the seats while giving us a good look at both fighters true potential. Oh yeah! A great fight we all would like to see. The powers to be won’t ever go for it. Too bad, Showtime and ESPN!
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