Acosta New WBA Interim Lightweight Champion
In a heated chess match of a lightweight fight, Venezuela’s Miguel Acosta (26-3-2 with 20 KOs) caught and stopped Maywood, CA’s Urbano Antillon (26-1 with 19 KOs) when he landed a right uppercut midway through the ninth round. It marked Antillon’s first loss as a professional and the 31-yeard old Acosta’s first time winning a piece of the world lightweight title.
From the outset, the style match-up was classic with Antillon pressuring in a brawling, body punching attack and Acosta, the classic moving boxer sliding back and forth laterally around the ring behind a quick jab. The action early on was all Antillon as he pressed Acosta into the corners and the ropes and raked his opponent with hard body shots and heavy right hands. Acosta would get in the occasional lead left hook as he moved away or shoot in two or three jabs and a right hand. But with the way he kept moving and not sitting on his punches, his volume was outshined by the harder shots of Antillon.
But as the rounds progressed, Acosta began to get his feet under him more and more. In the fifth he landed a right hand that stunned Antillon and turned the tide slightly. Antillon hid his disorientation well and kept coming forward but the moment was foreshadowing for what was to come and certainly a turning point in a fight that seemingly had been all Antillon to that point.
Over the course of the fifth, sixth and seventh rounds, Acosta began to box better and better, landing the jab, getting in the right and finding a home for the uppercut as Antillon abandoned his jab and came in head down looking to unload.
As the fight progressed, Antillon seemed more and more frustrated and a bit discouraged as his corner let him know the fight was slipping away. Both men were warned for infractions ranging from holding to low blows as they tired and the fight got sloppier.
In the eighth, Antillon seemed to be going for broke. Outmatched by the speed and skill set of his opponent, he began bullying his opponent into the ropes and looking to land heavy leather to the head and body. But Acosta slipped and countered well while keeping his jab going and getting in his lead hook and uppercut.
The fight got even uglier in the ninth as Antillon worked his way inside and was tied up by Acosta. A low blow by Acosta got him a warning but the action never ceased. Acosta got his jab going as it was clear Antillon was getting a little desperate coming in and letting his hands go in wild fashion at times.
The end came as Antillon came in sans jab looking to trap Acosta in the corner. Acosta shot a left jab and came back with right uppercut as Antillon walked right into it and was dropped hard, his head hanging over the ropes. Antillon rose valiantly but was badly hurt and the ref waved the bout off at 1:47 of the ninth.