LOS ANGELES – Undefeated rising welterweight Eimantas Stanionis continued his ascent up the 147-pound rankings Wednesday night with a ninth-round knockout of Colombia’s Janer Gonzalez in the main event of FS1 PBC Fight Night and on FOX Deportes from Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall in Los Angeles.
The 2016 Lithuanian Olympian Stanionis (12-0, 9 KOs), now fighting out of Oxnard, California, and Gonzalez (19-4-1, 15 KOs), now fighting out of Miami, engaged in a body-punching duel for most of the entertaining fight with the stronger shots and world-class jab of Stanionis allowing him to maintain an edge throughout.
Coming forward behind a tight defense, Stanionis came out patiently in round one, allowing Gonzalez to rip home some strong shots to the body. The powerful Lithuanian landed his own left hook to the body midway through round two that immediately put a shaken Gonzalez on the defensive. Another strong left hook to the liver later in the round sent Gonzalez down for a count of nine. Stanionis landed another vicious left hook to the body in round four that bothered Gonzalez, but he wasn’t able to score the stoppage.
Unexpectedly, Gonzalez buckled Stanionis momentarily with a right hand early in round six, but rather than let him enjoy the moment, Stanionis responded with a thudding series of left hooks to the liver that put him back in control.
Two overhand rights and a big right uppercut put Gonzalez down for an eight count late in round eight and a crushing right hand early in round nine dropped Gonzalez again, prompting Referee Jerry Cantu to wave off the fight at :45.
With the emphatic finish, 26-year-old Stanionis won his fourth straight fight by knockout. He threw 517 punches and landed 207 for an impressive connect percentage of 40%, according to CompuBox. In losing bravely, Gonzalez threw 456 punches and landed 100.
At the time of the knockout, Stanionis was ahead in the fight by scores of 80-70, 86-84 and 88-82.
Oak Hills, California, featherweight José Perez (9-1-1, 4 KOs) scored an action-packed fourth-round knockout over previously undefeated José Edgardo Garcia (13-1-2, 9 KOs) of Houston via Honduras.
Perez, a gym mate of four-division champion Leo Santa Cruz came out busier and sharper in round one. Action really heated up in round two, as Garcia began coming forward with powerful hooks to the body and head, though Perez landed a strong right hand that stunned Garcia momentarily. The fighters reversed roles in round three, as a strong round by Perez was interrupted by a Garcia left hook that staggered him momentarily.
The high-contact action, scheduled for eight rounds, was cut short by a Perez left hook early in round four, as he rocked Garcia. With Garcia pinned against the ropes, Perez then unloaded a vicious barrage, culminated by a bomb of a right hand that dropped Garcia for the full count at :39.
The two featherweights threw 422 combined punches with Perez throwing 181 and landing 61. Garcia threw 241 and landed 47. Perez has now won six straight fights.
Philippine Olympian Eumir Marcial (1-0) had a successful pro debut by scoring a four-round unanimous decision over Andrew Whitfield (3-2, 2 KOs) in their middleweight showdown.
Marcial, a native of Lunzuran, Zamboanga City, won every round against Whitfield, of Lewiston, Idaho, although each man landed their share of power shots.
The fight started quickly with the powerful Marcial standing his ground throwing left and right handed bombs while Whitfield answered in kind with a number of strong uppercuts of his own. Marcial started attacking to the body as well as the head in the second, slowing Whitfield’s momentum and nearly closing his right eye by the end of the round.
By electing to go toe-to-toe, Marcial, who qualified for the 2020 Olympics before it was postponed and won the silver medal at the 2019 AIBA World Boxing Championships, made for an exciting action fight. The scores were 40-36 according to all three judges. Marcial threw 310 punches and landed 120. Whitfield threw 273 and landed 46.
18-year-old lightweight prospect Fernando Molina (4-0, 2 KOs) showed off his skills on his way to earning a six-round unanimous decision over a determined Teodoro “El Regalo” Alonso (3-3).
A pro for just over a year, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico’s Molina showed impressive hand speed, nailing the rugged Alonso almost at will, while also highlighting his strong ability to move and avoid return fire. The Los Angeles native Alonso, who was riding a three-bout winning streak coming in, never stopped trying to pressure Molina and proved sturdy in making it through six rounds.
The scores were 60-54 twice and 59-55 for Molina. He threw 259 punches during the fight and landed 79, while Alonso threw 333 and landed 59.