Wednesday, October 04, 2023  |



Jerwin Ancajas returns with 5th round stoppage of Wilner Soto

Photo by Jhay Oh Otamias
Fighters Network

Jerwin Ancajas got back into the win column on Saturday, stopping Colombian journeyman Wilner Soto in five rounds at The Armory in Minneapolis, Minn.

The former IBF junior bantamweight titleholder Ancajas (34-3-2, 23 knockouts) dropped Soto (15-0, 8 KOs) in the fourth and fifth rounds of the eight-round junior featherweight bout, which preceded the Showtime Championship Boxing broadcast which was headlined by the junior middleweight bout between Carlos Adames and Julian Williams.

Ancajas had lost his title last year by unanimous decision to Fernando Martinez before losing a rematch by a similar margin. Prior to that, he had made nine defenses of the title he won in 2016 but hadn’t fought in the eight months since the losses to Martinez.

The 31-year-old Ancajas of Panabo City, Philippines looked refreshed after years of struggling to make 115 pounds as he banged away to the body of the overmatched Soto in the early rounds. The southpaw Ancajas stepped on the gas pedal in the fourth round, digging body punches before a right hook put Soto down.

The fight was essentially over by the fifth round, as Ancajas swung for the fences with overhand lefts that rocked Soto. Soto was hurt to the midsection with a left uppercut before three right hooks to the body put Soto down again, forcing the immediate stoppage.

The loss was the seventh straight for the 32-year-old Soto.

Ancajas, who is rated no. 8 by the WBA at 118 pounds, is expected to jump right back into the world title picture, MP Promotions President Sean Gibbons told The Ring before the fight. Ancajas is expected to be the first title challenger for WBA bantamweight titleholder Takuma Inoue (18-1, 4 KOs) in November or December in Japan.

Ancajas wasn’t the only former champion on the undercard.

Former IBF super middleweight titleholder Caleb Truax (31-6-2, 19 KOs) ended a two-year plus layoff in an inaudacious manner, losing a ten-round decision to Burley Brooks (7-2-1, 5 KOs). Truax, who hadn’t fought since losing a decision to then-IBF super middleweight titleholder Caleb Plant in January of 2021, is 12 years older than Brooks at 39.

Ryan Songalia has written for ESPN, the New York Daily News, Rappler and The Guardian, and is part of the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism Class of 2020. He can be reached at [email protected].