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PAWTUCKET â Outside the ring, Thomas Falowo is known as a quiet, respectful person, but inside the ring, heâs made plenty of noise in his 16 months as a middleweight boxer.
The Pawtucket resident has stormed out to a commanding 5-0 record that includes knockouts in his first four fights, and on Thursday night, he will shoot for his sixth victory when he appears on the undercard of the âHome Invasionâ show, presented by Jimmy Burchfieldâs Classic Entertainment & Sports, at the Twin River Event Center.
Falowo will step into the ring for the first six-round fight of his pro career when he takes on a tough customer in Bronx, N.Y. native Troy Artis (3-2-1, 2 KOs), who is four months removed from a third-round TKO of previously-unbeaten Israel Duffus in Atlantic City, N.J.
âI donât really know much about him,â Falowo said after a recent workout at Manfredoâs Gym on Conant Street. âI saw a clip of him on YouTube, just to kind of see what he looks like and size him up a little bit. I know heâs a tough guy because he wanted to fight six (rounds), so I know heâs going to come in good shape.â
A convincing victory in front of a large local crowd would only boost the rising stock in Falowo, who decided to turn pro in the fall of 2010 after a successful amateur career that saw him appear in over 60 fights and take second earlier that year in the New England Golden Gloves and USA Boxing New England tournaments.
âIâm feeling good,â added Falowo, who is 22 and a Blackstone Academy graduate who also took part in football and track and field at Shea High. âWhen it all comes down to it, itâs all fighting. and Iâm enjoying myself. Itâs fun. I love the life, I love the crowd, and I love fighting, And the trainingâs fun too. Itâs hard work, but itâs fun.â
Falowo began his career with a bang on Nov, 12, 2010 at Twin River when he recorded a second-round TKO of Odias Dumezil of Winter Haven, Fla., and less than three months later, he put away New Haven, Conn.âs Greg McCoy at Mohegan Sun Arena with a fourth-round stoppage.
âIn that fight, Iâm not going to lie, I was a little nervous,â Falowo said about his fight with McCoy. âHe came out automatically trying to take my head off, but I came back and rocked him.â
Last year also saw Falowo score a third-round TKO of Cincinnatiâs Zack Thomas at Foxwoods Resort Casino and a dominant second-round knockout of another Ohio fighter, Russ Niggemayer, at Mohegan Sun.
In Falowoâs last fight, a four-round unanimous-decision victory of Queens, N.Y. product Borngod Washington on Oct. 7 at Twin River, Falowo ruled the fight from start to finish, won the fight on all the judgesâ cards by 40-36 scores, and did everything but send Washington to the canvas.
âI was hitting him with some good shots,â said Falowo, who also works full-time as a pharmacy technician at CVS Customer Care Center in Woonsocket. âI was surprised that he didnât go down, but he was a tough guy and he actually hit me flush. But it felt good to actually get in there and mix it up a little bit and get that experience.â
The main event of Thursdayâs show will feature another Pawtucket fighter, Eddie âThe Puerto Rican Sensationâ Soto, who will fight in his third straight main-event bout and make his debut as a 145-pound welterweight after posting a 12-3 (4 KOs) record as a 135-pound lightweight.
Soto will take on Jason âSchoolboyâ Pires of New Bedford, Mass. (22-4-1, 9 KOs) in a six-round battle. Pires, who like Soto, will be searching for his first win since 2009, is a New Bedford police officer, as well as a member of New Bedfordâs SWAT Team.
In the co-feature, super middleweight fan favorite and former URI football standout Vladine Biosse (11-1-1, 6 KOs) of Providence will contest George Armenta (14-7, 11 KOs) from Silver Spring, Md. in a six-round bout.
Two other Rhode Island fighters, middleweight prospect Alex Amparo (2-0, 1 KO) of Providence and 40-year-old super middleweight Benny Costantino (7-0, 4 KOs) of West Warwick, will place their perfect records on the line on the undercard.
Tickets for the show, which officially launches the 2012 Twin River Thursday Night Fight Series, are $35, $50, $75, and $125 (VIP) and can be purchased by contacting CES at 724-2253/2254, going online at www.cesboxing.com or www.twinriver.com, or visiting the Players Club booth at Twin River or any TicketMaster location.
The doors open at 6 p.m., and the first bout is scheduled for 7. The casino has waived its 18-plus rule for the show, and anybody under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult and enter through the West entrance.