By Keith Idec
ARLINGTON, Texas – The immediate future of his older brother was more meaningful to boxing fans Saturday night, but Marsellos Wilder was able to bounce back from his first defeat.
Marsellos Wilder dropped Mark Sanchez once and stopped him soon thereafter in the first round of a four-round cruiserweight bout on the Errol Spence Jr.-Mikey Garcia undercard at AT&T Stadium. Their fight was stopped at 1:29 of the first round because Wilder had unloaded an array of unanswered power punches on a defenseless Sanchez, who was on his feet when the action was halted.
The 29-year-old Wilder, of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, improved to 4-1 and scored his third knockout. The 31-year-old Sanchez (0-2), of Midland, Texas, has lost both of his professional fights by TKO.
Wilder’s victory came just seven weeks after journeyman William Deets upset him January 26 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Deets (7-13, 3 KOs), of Kearney, Nebraska, stopped Wilder in the fourth and final round of their cruiserweight fight on the Keith Thurman-Josesito Lopez undercard.
Wilder, the younger brother of WBC heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder, took up boxing late, following a college football career. The former Jackson State University wide receiver didn’t make his pro debut until last May 25, a month after his 29th birthday.
Earlier Saturday night, flyweight prospect Jesse Rodriguez scored a third-round, technical-knockout win against Rauf Aghayev.
The 19-year-old Rodriguez (9-0, 5 KOs), of San Antonio, hurt Aghayev with a left hook in the third round. Azerbaijan’s Aghayev (26-7, 11 KOs) later complained of a left arm injury, which prompted referee Laurence Cole to halt the action at 2:50 of the third round.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing