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The heavyweights boxed instead of brawled, and Efe Ajagba closed the show strong. Ajagba edged the previously unbeaten Stephan Shaw by 10-round unanimous decision (96-94 3x) Saturday evening at Turning Stone Resort Casino.

Ajagba (17-1, 13 KOs) won his second straight bout since a 2021 defeat to Frank Sanchez. He had surgeries on both elbows after that fight and has re-established himself as a contender to watch. Shaw (18-1, 13 KOs) was ahead 58-56 on all three judges’ cards after the sixth but was outlanded 62-37 in the last four rounds.

In a battle of jabs, Ajagba landed his with more frequency (90-48).

“I went back to the corner and they told me to let my hands go, keep throwing punches, my jab. I controlled the fight, so that’s how I won the fight,” Ajagba said. “He tried to land the big shots. I watched him to see what he was going to do. He kept throwing the jab, using the jab more.”

Rice Shocks Vianello in Co-Feature

The heavyweight, spoiler, Jonnie Rice, did it again. Rice (16-6-1, 11 KOs) stunned Guido Vianello (10-1-1, 9 KOs), stopping the 2016 Italian Olympian in the seventh round. Vianello was cut over the left eye by a right hand in the sixth round, although the referee initially ruled it was caused by an accidental headbutt.

After a conference with the local commission, the ruling was reversed. Rice entered the fight coming off back-to-back victories over highly regarded prospect Michael Coffie.

At the time of the stoppage, all three judges had Vianello ahead: 59-55 2x and 58-56.

“I did it again… another undefeated fighter,” Rice said. “I’m not here to call anyone out right now. I’m going to enjoy this victory and then see what’s next.”

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