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Long Beach's Monaghan stays perfect

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 03: Sean Monaghan

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 03: Sean Monaghan (R) of the United States throws a right against Santos Martinez of the United States during their Light Heavyweight fight at Madison Square Garden on December 3, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) Credit: Getty/Al Bello

It’s been a busy year for Long Beach cruiserweight Sean Monaghan, admittedly a late-comer to the sport.

Monaghan, who’s fought eight times this year, improved to 11-0 with a second-round knockout of Santos Martinez (2-3) on the Miguel Cotto-Antonio Margarito undercard at Madison Square Garden last night.

Having a clear head for what was arguably the biggest fight of his career on the biggest stage wasn’t the easiest thing to do. “To be honest with you I tried not to think about it too much,” Monaghan said of fighting at the Garden. “I didn’t want to let it get to me so I walked out there in a zone.”

So when Monaghan he feel the fight was his? “I thought I had him as soon I heard about the fight to be totally honest,” said Monaghan. “When they said I was fighting him I said I got him.”

Monaghan, who has fought in various venues around the tri-state area, including BB Kings, the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, the Aviator in Brooklyn and at Foxwoods, has moved up the ladder quickly.

“I got a late start in boxing, but I’m 11-0 with eight knockouts, so I’m blowing by everybody,” said Monaghan, 30.

Monaghan scored a fifth-round TKO against Anthony Pietrantonio at the Theater at MSG October 22. Before that he scored a fourth-round TKO of Kentrall Claiborne on the Sergio Martinez-Darren Barker undercard at the Boardwalk Hall.

So what’s next for Monaghan? He said he’ll take on anyone they put in front of him. But he also would like to fulfill a dream to fight for a championship overseas.

“I’m actually looking for a shot at possibly at the Irish title,” said Monaghan. “I’m an Irish citizen. I was born in America, but both of my parents are from Ireland. If not, we’ll take whoever comes next.”

Another Long Islander hoping to earn a win was Hempstead’s Mike Ruiz. But Ruiz didn’t have enough for junior welterweight Glen Tapia. Tapia (11-0, 6 KOs) scored a second-round knockout of Ruiz (15-7, 7 KOs).

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