Efe Ajagba, Raymond Muratalla, and Lindolfo Delgado Win Big at Lake Tahoe


By Arne K. Lang

The community of Stateline on the Nevada side of Lake Tahoe sits 6,225 feet above sea level. Top Rank was there tonight in what was the first televised event from the spanking new Tahoe Blue Event Center. The featured attraction was a 10-round heavyweight tilt between Nigerian-American Efe Ajagba and Australian invader Joseph Goodall.

Considering the high elevation, it figured that one or both fighters were at risk of gassing out if the fight went long. However, Ajagba made that a moot point. Working off a stiff jab, he outclassed the Aussie before stopping him in the fourth frame. Goodall remained upright after eating a barrage of punches but his legs were shaky and referee Tony Weeks stepped in and waived the bout off at the 50-second mark

It was the fourth straight win for Ajagba (19-1, 14 KOs) who avenged a loss to Goodall in the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland. There’s been some noise to match him with Zhilei Zhang, perhaps as the chief supporting bout to Fury vs. Usyk. Zhang, who lives in New Jersey, was in attendance tonight. Goodall falls to 10-2-1.


Undefeated lightweight Raymond Muratalla is on impressive roll. Tonight he scored his 13th knockout in his last 14 starts, boosting his record to 19-0 at the expense of previously undefeated Mexican knockout artist Diego Torres (18-1). They were originally slated to fight in August as the chief supporting bout to Emanuel Navarrete’s title defense against Oscar Valdez, but their match had to be pushed back when Muratalla suffered an unspecified injury.

The ever-improving Muratalla, a protégé of Robert Garcia, had Torres fighting off his back foot from the opening stanza. The end came in round eight after he decked Torres with a left hook that arrived on the heels of a right uppercut. Torres was up at nine, but referee Celestino Ruiz had seen enough and called a halt. The stoppage seemed premature, but Muratalla had won every round.

Other Bouts of Note

Mexican super lightweight Lindolfo Delgado, a former Olympian, turned in what was arguably the best performance of his pro career with a fourth-round stoppage of countryman Luis Hernandez Ramos. A stablemate of Raymond Muratalla, Delgado stunned Ramos with a wicked counter left uppercut and ended the bout moments later. Ramos, who entered the match with a 23-3 record and hadn’t previously been stopped, slumped to the mat as referee Ruiz was waiving the fight off.

Ramos lay flat on his back on the canvas for several minutes before he was fit to leave the ring. Delgado, who had been extended the distance in five of his last seven fights heading in, improved his ledger to 19-0 (14 KOs).

In a 10-round welterweight contest, Puerto Rican southpaw Henry Lebron advanced to 19-0 (10) with a majority decision over New Haven, Connecticut’s William Foster III . The judges had it 99-91, 96-94, and 95-95.

Lebron, who landed the cleaner punches and worked the body effectively, is aligned with influential manager Peter Kahn who also directs the career of Xander Zayas, among others. It was the first pro loss for William Foster III (16-1), the brother of 22-1 light heavyweight Charles Foster.

Lakeland, Florida heavyweight Brandon Moore, Top Rank’s newest signee, pitched a shutout over Robert Simms, a 39-year-old father of five from Saginaw, Michigan, advancing his record to 13-0 (8).

Moore knocked Simms (12-4-1) down with a chopping right hand late in round four and won by a score of 80-71 on all three cards. However, considering the roll of flab around Simms’ waist, Moore’s showing wasn’t particularly impressive, notwithstanding the fact that the gritty Michigander was coming off his career-best win, a unanimous decision over previously undefeated James McKenzie Morrison.

In a match fought at a glacial pace, behemoths Antonio Mireles (8-01) and Skylar Lacy (7-0-1) fought six rounds to a majority draw. One of the judges awarded the bout to Lacy 58-56, but the two others had it 57-57.

Lacy did his best work in the early rounds, but he tired in the high altitude and Mireles rallied to skirt defeat.

Photo credit: Mikey Williams / Top Rank via Getty Images