Jarrett Hurd was welcomed into the ring by the Washington Redskins marching band. He left in a manner familiar to his favorite football team recently, losing to an opponent from Philadelphia.
Challenger Julian Williams unanimously outpointed Hurd over the weekend at EagleBank Arena in front of the defending champ’s home fans to take the IBF, WBA and IBO super welterweight titles.
“This is a dream come true,” said the Philadelphia-based Williams, who lost his one previous shot at the IBF title to Jermall Charlo in December of 2016. “I have been waiting for this for years. I never ditched the gym. I never got into girls or left the gym. I am from the streets, but I was never in the streets. I was in the gym practicing my craft.”
Williams (27-1-1) knocked down Hurd (23-1) in the second round and stayed on his feet throughout. While both fighters appeared in danger at times, Williams clearly believed he won in the later rounds.
The judges agreed, scoring it 116-111, 115-112 and 115-112, as did Hurd’s corner.
“It wasn’t the pressure of being home for Jarrett. J-Rock was the better fighter tonight,” insisted Hurd trainer Ernesto Rodriguez. “We want the rematch. Our preparation will be better.”
During the middle of the sixth round, arguably Hurd’s best, Williams made a “come at me” expression after Hurd connected with a jab. Williams was flexing to his corner after the 11th, and was the more active fighter in the 12th, landing one final promising combination 45 seconds before the bell. When the final bell sounded, trainer Stephen Edwards rushed out of Williams’ corner to hoist his fighter aloft.
“I am not shocked. I am just happy,” Edwards said. “We just knew that we were going to win. There are certain things that you just know. He trained so hard and he was so ready, I just knew. AP