NATIONAL HARBOR – Lamont Roach, Jr. showed poise and workman-like skills to win a unanimous decision over Rey Perez in front of 1,768 loud supporters at MGM National Harbor last Thursday.
Roach (16-0), from Upper Marlboro, holds the World Boxing Council Youth Silver Super Featherweight title, although the belt was not on the line for this fight.
Early in the fight, it seemed as if Roach was trying to figure out Perez (21-9). However, he said that was not true.
“That was not the case,” Roach said. “We had him figured out. I got hit with a good body shot in the second round that hurt, and along with a few low blows, that kind of threw me off. But I got myself back together and dominated the rest of the fight.”
Perez only won the second round. The judges agreed that Roach dominated the fight from the second round on. All three judges scored the fight 99-91, which is nine rounds to one, in favor of Roach.
Roach has a fighting style that is far beyond his age. He understands every opponent is tough.
“I think every opponent is tough, especially one that is coming into my backyard,” he said. “I am undefeated and he would like to get that on his resume.
“I shut him out and I looked good. You don’t need a knock out to make a statement.”
Roach was the harder puncher throughout the fight. His lead right hands and combinations were landing flush on Perez’s face and body. In the middle rounds, Perez’s eyes became puffy and he was swelling around his cheeks. But, as Roach said, Perez was tough and resilient and was fighting until the end of the tenth round. It is the second time Roach has gone 10 rounds.
Roach has fought in his hometown before, but never at the new MGM National Harbor.
“It was great. I loved the energy. I loved being in front of my friends and family. They make me feel at home,” he said.
The other local fighter on the card suffered a defeat. Bowie’s Luther Smith (9-2) lost a split decision to Lamont Capers. Smith knocked down Capers in the first round, and Capers almost fell out of the ring, but Smith seemed to run out of gas for the rest of the four-round fight.
The next big event for a local fighter will be on Jan. 20 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn when Washington, D.C.’s, Lamont Peterson takes on the International Boxing Federation Welterweight champion Errol Spence.