Maurice Hooker vs Alex Saucedo Results
Nov 17 2018 6:59 AM

Early in his pro career, which began when he was 17 years old, Alex Saucedo and his trainer made the 3-hour drive from Oklahoma City to Dallas to train at the Maple Avenue Boxing Gym. During these workouts, Saucedo often sparred with Maurice. Tonight they fought for real and the stakes were high. Hooker was making the first defense of the WBO 140-pound title he captured with a split decision over Terry Flanagan in Flanagan’s backyard of Manchester, England.

“We both got better,” said Maurice, looking back at those days. “I just got more better than him.” And tonight, in front of a hostile crowd, Hooker was the “more better” man, getting off the canvas to retain his title on a seventh round TKO.

The fight was fought at a brisk pace. Things were looking good for Saucedo when he dropped Hooker with an overhand right in the second frame. He also had a strong fifth round. The crowd stood and cheered when he pinned Hooker on the ropes and flailed away with a barrage of punches. But Hooker launched a flurry of his own before the round ended and Saucedo went back to his corner at the end of the sixth with a bad cut over his left eye.

In the seventh, Hooker landed a straight right that dictated a standing 8-count when the ropes kept Saucedo upright. Hooker then went for the kill and staggered Saucedo with several hard shots, compelling referee Mark Nelson to waive it off. Hooker improved to 25-0-3 with his 17th knockout. Saucedo, five years younger than Hooker at age 24, suffered his first defeat after opening his career 28-0.

Co-Main

In the co-main, Egidijus Kavaliauskas, a two-time Olympian from Lithuania who trains with Mikey Garcia at Robert Garcia’s Oxnard (CA) boxing academy, inched closer to a match with Terence Crawford with a third round stoppage of previously undefeated Roberto Arriaza (17-1). Nicaragua’s Arriaza, who had scored three first-round knockouts in his previous four fights, was simply out-gunned by the 30-year-old Kavaliauskas who suffered a bad cut over his right eye but persevered, improving to 21-0 with his 17th knockout.

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