In the Claressa Shields vs. Marie-Eve Dicaire co-main event, Houston’s undefeated Danielle Perkins (3-0, 1 KO) showed marked improvement and had a much easier time in her rematch against Georgia’s Monika “Lay Em Down” Harrison (2-2, 1 KO), scoring a dominant eight-round unanimous decision while picking up the WBC Silver Heavyweight Championship in the process.
The former amateur world champion Perkins used every bit of her superior athleticism, 6’ height, and 72-inch reach to move around the ring and keep the 5’ 10” Harrison at bay with a punishing southpaw right jab and a steady diet of strong left hands to the head and body. At times, Referee Michael Griffin appeared to be considering a stoppage, but the durable Harrison kept coming forward and swinging for the fences for all eight rounds, despite the firepower coming her way.
The scores were 80-72 from all three judges.
“I apologize for not getting a knockout. I swear next time I’ll come back and give it to you, Flint,” said Perkins, post-fight. “Monika made some adjustments this time. I hit her with some solid hammers, and that girl stayed on her feet, so kudos to her.”
Perkins threw 353 punches in the fight and landed 121, including 40.9% of her power shots. Harrison threw 273 shots but only found a home for 21 of them.
“I want to be the undisputed female heavyweight champion of the world,” continued Perkins. “I want to be the best you’ve ever seen.”
Undefeated bantamweight Jamie “The Miracle” Mitchell (6-0-2, 43 KOs) of Pacific Grove, California, looked impressive in battering and stopping more-experienced veteran Noemi “La Rebelde / No-No” Bosques (12-16-3, 2 KOs) in five one-sided rounds.
With the two-fisted punishment from Mitchell steadily increasing with every passing round, Referee Gerard White decided the stumbling and retreating Bosques had had enough and mercifully waved the fight off at 1:49 of the fifth.
“I was just zoned out. I was doing whatever fits the moment,” said Mitchell, post-fight. “That’s how I got the knockout. Thanks to my coaches and thanks to Claressa Shields for putting me on this card. This is an unforgettable moment for women.”
Prior to scoring the technical knockout, Mitchell landed 48% (80/167) of her power punches, and 40% (94/234) of her total punches. Noemi Bosques only landed 24 of 153 punches.
“I like to pick on myself to do better,” said Mitchell of her performance. “There were certain things I wanted to do, but they don’t call this girl a gatekeeper for nothing. I wish I had gotten her out of there quicker and been crisper with my jab. She was a bit tricky.”
In the opening bout of the broadcast, 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Marlen Esparza (9-1, 1 KO) stayed busy ahead of her scheduled challenge of WBC Flyweight Champion Ibeth Zamora in April with a dominant six-round unanimous decision over Canada’s Shelly Barnett (now 4-4-2, 2 KO).
Barnett tried to be aggressive, but Esparza’s skills allowed her to pot shot her bigger opponent, nearly at will, especially as the fight wore on. “We knew she was tough and bigger,” said Esparza. “I wanted someone with more weight because I never fight above 112 lbs. and I think I handled it well. I’m happy about the way everything played out. I’m happy to have been part of this event and to be working with Claressa again.”
Esparza threw 352 punches in the fight, landing 126, including 26 body shots and 38.4% of her power shots. Barnett threw 291 and landed 49. The judges’ scores were 60-54, 6-53 x 2.
On the free pre-show portion of the pay-per-view, middleweight Timur Kerefov stayed undefeated (11-0, 6 KOs) with a TKO 3 over Saint Petersburg, Florida veteran Manny Woods (now 16-11-1, 6 KOs). Woods left eye couldn’t hold up under the onslaught of punches from the Russian former amateur star. The time was 1:06. Kerefov, Detroit via Shalushka, Russia and now training at Kronk Gym, threw 190 punches in the abbreviated encounter, landing 80, including 24 body shots. Woods threw 122 and landed just 17.