Stanley Ross won the United States Boxing Asssociation cruiserweight title last night when he recorded a 12-round split decision over hometown favorite Boone Pultz before 2,300 at the D.C. Convention Center.

A native of Philadelphia, the 28-year-old Ross (11-9-1), who started slowly, picked up the pace when he opened a nasty cut over Pultz' right eye in the fifth round.

"I started moving in after I noticed the cut above his eye. It was bleeding bad and I knew I had him," said Ross. "He never hurt me -- except for those low blows. I felt I dominated the fight without any problems."

Pultz, ranked fifth by the WBC and sixth by the WBA, dominated the early rounds. Supported by the chants of "Boone, Boone, Boone," Pultz successfully scored on lefts and rights to the head. However, Ross slowed Pultz downed with several body punches.

At the direction of the referee, Pultz was penalized a point on each offical's scorecard for a low blow in the 11th round.

There were no knockdowns in the contest that ended with blood pouring from Pultz' nose and right eye.

Two judges scored the fight in favor of Ross, 114-112 and 115-111. The other judge gave Pultz the fight, 115-112.

It was Pultz' first loss in 13 bouts. He won the title from Bernard Benton on a 12-round decision March 27. This was his first title defense and his first professional fight in Washington.

In a featured preliminary bout, North American Boxing Federation welterweight champion Maurice Blocker recorded a first-round knockout over Efren Olivo in a scheduled 10-round match.

Blocker, 21-0 with 11 knockouts, landed three straight lefts to the challenger's face before throwing a devastating right at the bell that left Olivo on the canvas.

In the light heavyweight bout, Dennis Stanley, making his professional debut, registered a second-round technical knockout over Melvin Richardson.

Stanley unleashed a series of body blows before landing a hard right to the midsection that had Richardson leaning over the ropes, vomiting, with 1:42 left in the second round.

In other preliminaries, featherweight Tyrone McKelvy decisioned Joe Rindgo and junior welterweight Jerry Townes decisioned Lindell Beatty. Both winners were making their professional debuts in four-round bouts.