'Latin Snake' wins rematch of 'Contender' finalists

Updated: October 16, 2005, 3:03 AM ET
MaxBoxing.com

Off the heels of their spirited showdown in May to decide the $1 million prize awarded to "The Contender," Sergio Mora and Peter Manfredo put together another good scrap Saturday night in the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Manfredo, now trained by Freddie Roach, promised to get his revenge on Mora in front of the L.A. fighter's home crowd. He left empty-handed as Mora won in a split decision.

On the undercard, Jessie Brinkley and Anthony Bonsante rematched the first encounter from season one of the reality show. Bonsante, who was stopped in that fight, outworked Brinkley handily, it seemed, through five rounds.

But the judges didn't see it that way, giving Brinkley a unanimous decision with scores of 48-47 (twice) and 49-46, eliciting boos from the crowd.

In a give-and-take pattern that mimicked their first fight, Mora and Manfredo took turns seizing the momentum, only to have the other man battle back. Although the exchanges weren't as furious as their first bout, the bout did unfold at a relatively fast pace.

Round 1: Not much action through the first minute. Quick glancing one-two from Manfredo. Body shot from him. Leaping lead hook misses for Mora. Clubbing rights in the clinch by Manfredo. Mora falls short of a counter cross and Manfredo hits him with a right. Manfredo might be boxing a little smarter this time, not as overconfident as he was early in their first match.

Mora is cut above the left eye. Manfredo circles and lets Mora come to him. Flurries by both in close and nice short cross by Manfredo, a couple more of them in succession. Mora is bleeding badly over the eye. As the round ends his cut man will have his work cut out for him.

Manfredo wins round, 10-9.

Round 2: More clubbing in close by both figthers. Mora lands a nice left uppercut and pins Manfredo on the ropes, drilling him with hooks and quick hands. A few moments Manfredo responds with a big rally, landing a hard right. Neither boxer seems able to hurt the other so it's pretty much a pillow fight.

Right in close by Manfredo, who seems to turn it up whenever Mora gets something going. Nice trade in close as Mora lands a sweet right hand ... and as the bell rings. They trade rights with Manfredo hitting way late, getting a warning.

Mora wins round, 10-9.

Round 3: Good trading of punches in close. Manfredo is using a consistent double right in close -- to the body and then the head -- and landing it regularly. Manfredo's hands might be a little quicker, but Manfredo has more power. Good trade in the trenches again. Left by Mora and a body shot. Mora opens up with a rain of wide hooks and they are landing as Manfredo tries to bob under them. But Manfredo comes back with a couple short shots in close.

Nice counter right by Manfredo, Mora's legs get tangled up and he staggers back, and Manfredo raises his hands, instead of jumping on Mora. Mora comes back and nails him a left hand and now Manfredo is moving and avoiding him.

Manfredo wins round, 10-9.

Round 4: Mora opens with a wide hook that is blocked. Quick double cross by Manfredo. Hook by Manfredo. This is really a pillow fight because nobody budges from the other guy's Sunday punch, but it has the feel of an old-time club fight because they are providing some good action. Body shots and upstairs work from Mora.

Mora is turning southpaw at times but it really doesn't seem to be too effective. Right by Mora and sweet body-head flurry. Very nice! Left hook in close by Mora. Manfredo seems confused and a beat behind in the hand speed department. Flurry at the 10-second mark by both fighters and Mora gets the better of it.

Mora wins round, 10-9.

Round 5: We're at the halfway mark and it's mimicking their first fight, as Mora started a little slow and brought it hard down the stretch. Good flurry in close by Manfredo as he drives Mora back and he lands a nice lead hook. A flurry of jabs by Manfredo mostly miss and Mora misses a counter cross.

Nice combo to body and head by Mora. He's right in the zone, letting his nice, quick hands go and hits Manfredo with a dozen shots, most of them flush. He's going for it and Manfredo is either buzzed or playing a lengthy game of rope-a-dope. Mora's also bleeding all over Manfredo in close, which may be why he's pressing the pace.

Halfway through the round, the ref stops the action after Mora finishes his flurry and he gets a short break. He's allowed to continue. Nice right by Mora. More shots to the body, four in a row, as Mora uncorks a nice string of them. Manfredo misses a counter combo. Mora seems to have more energy now than he did earlier.

Mora wins round, 10-9

Round 6: Manfredo needs to get going here as he's letting Mora outwork him, especially here in L.A.'s Staples Center, where Mora is the local boy. Jab from Manfredo. A one-two misses by Manfredo. Mora goes to a southpaw stance but isn't as effective, though he seems to have slightly better defense from the lefty position.

Jab from Mora. Left to the body in close by Peter. He bulls Mora to the ropes but can't get off. Another body right by Manfredo and Mora smacks him an uppercut. Body left by Mora.

Right by Mora just misses. Body shots by Peter and a counter cross by Manfredo. Great trade in the last few seconds as Mora slams left hooks home and Manfredo works the body.

Manfredo wins round, 10-9.

Round 7: Flurry by Manfredo scores as Mora's on the ropes. Mora misses a hook.

Manfredo seems a little more active this round. Uppercut and right miss by Mora. Left in close by Manfredo. Flurry by Manfredo. Nice uppercut by Mora and a right. Flurry by Manfredo partially lands. More hooks and uppercuts by Mora. It's mostly arm punches but they look snappy.

Uppercut by Mora. Trades in close and Manfredo seems a little slow here.

Mora wins round, 10-9.

Round 8: Right to the body by Manfredo. They trade jabs. Right in close by Mora. Manfredo eats a couple hooks and comes back with his own hook. Combo by Peter and nice sharp right by Mora. Nice lefts by Mora, under and over, body and head. They are scrapping in close but Mora seems to have just a bit more gas and speed.

Mora smacks Peter on the ropes and keeps his hands busy.

One minute left. Left by Manfredo. One-two to the body by Manfredo. Right by Peter as Mora moves in. Big series of quick shots in close by Mora.

Mora wins round, 10-9

The judges score the bout 77-75 for Mora, 77-75 for Manfredo, and 77-75 for Mora, the winner by split decision.

MaxBoxing scores the bout 77-75 for Sergio Mora.

Punches: Mora, 417 of 133 (32 percent); Manfredo 594 of 180 (30 percent).