After losing two of his previous three fights and taking off nine months to make the move to new trainer Brian McIntire and Top Rank promotions, former Long Island Olympian Jamel Herring put his career back on the right track with an emphatic TKO over Mexican Juan Pablo Sanchez at 1 minute, 28 seconds of the fifth round of a lightweight bout Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.
The bout was under the main event between WBA lightweight champion Jorge Linares and challenger Vasiliy Lomachenko.
Although Sanchez has a modest 29-16 record with 14 KOs, he’s a tough customer who previously went the distance with lightweight contender Teofimo Lopez, who also was on the card. Sanchez’s penchant for head-butting posed a problem when a clash opened up a cut above the right eye of Herring (17-2, 10 KOs) midway through the second round. It was bleeding profusely at the end of the third.
“It opened up in the third, so I had a sense of urgency because they said I at least had to go four rounds for a decision and I knew I was up,” Herring said. “Me, being a Marine, I wasn’t going to quit or let them stop it.”
The Coram native won every round on the scorecards, putting together short, sharp combinations and coupling it with a strong body attack. Although he was dropping in weight and was well under the 135-pound lightweight limit at 132.4 pounds, Herring said the work with his new team, including a nutritionist, helped him come in strong.
It showed as he pinned Sanchez to the ropes three times in the third, fourth and fifth rounds. The winning combination began with three hard, straight lefts by the southpaw and ended with a right-left when referee Anthony Chiarantano waved it to a halt.
“Sometimes, you have to fight through adversity and just keep going forward,” Herring said. “I give myself a B-plus or B. I was coming strong and making a statement at home, stopping a guy who hasn’t been stopped since 2012. He fought a lot of good prospects and contenders. That’s a plus for me.”