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Collier Beats Wills, Takes State Heavyweight Title

February 27, 1986|RICH TOSCHES | Times Staff Writer

Dee Collier, counterpunching effectively and fighting the final three rounds with a badly injured right hand, captured the California heavyweight title Wednesday night by pounding out a unanimous 12-round decision over Mark Wills at Reseda's Country Club.

Collier used a five-inch reach advantage to pound away at Wills throughout the bout, hurting him in the eighth with three crushing right hands. Wills, the aggressor in the fight, landed solid body punches in every round, but never hurt Collier.

Collier, 26, of Los Angeles, hit Wills high on the head in the 10th round and immediately grimaced and began shaking his right hand. For the rest of the fight, Collier seldom used the right, instead piling up points with stinging left jabs and whistling left hooks.

Collier scored a first-round technical knockout over Randall (Tex) Cobb last Oct. 29, the first time Cobb had been stopped in more than 30 professional fights. The win Wednesday night gave the 212-pound Collier a 9-4 record.

Wills (220), also of Los Angeles, is 7-5-1. He was stopped in the ninth round of his previous fight by Tim Witherspoon, the former World Boxing Council heavyweight champion.

Neither Collier nor Wills were knocked down in the fight. The state heavyweight title, once held by Stan Ward, was vacated when the state boxing commission took it away earlier this year because of Ward's inactivity.

In preliminary bouts, unbeaten lightweights Jerry Grant of San Diego and Ernie Nava of Los Angeles fought to a rare three-card draw in a lightweight fight; Alex Madrid of San Diego scored a six-round unanimous decision over Lonnie Bryant, also of San Diego, in a lightweight bout; LaMont Baker of Las Vegas scored a six-round split decision over previously unbeaten Gabe Lira of El Monte in a junior lightweight fight; and Bruce Pearson of Los Angeles scored a four-round split decision over Victor Moreno of Van Nuys in a lightweight bout.

Also, Carlton Brooks of Los Angeles scored a first-round TKO over Randy McGuire, also of Los Angeles, in a scheduled four-round welterweight bout. It was the professional debut for each fighter.

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