1911-05-03 (158lbs) Leo Houck w pts 20 Harry Lewis, The Hippodrome, Paris, France
1911-05-03 (158lbs) Leo Houck w pts 20 Harry Lewis, The Hippodrome, Paris, France. Having claimed the title Lewis found himself challenged by Houck, who had been unsuccessful in seeking a match with the British champion, Jim Sullivan, and had twice bettered his fellow American back home. Unable to avoid the challenge, Lewis met Houck at 158lbs in a bout given championship billing. While Lewis scaled a low 147lbs (the welterweight limit), Houck, allowed to weigh-in privately, was announced as being within the agreed target. Even up until the eighth, from there on in Houck showed his superiority, an uppercut nearly finishing Lewis off in the ninth. A clever boxer, Lewis came back, sidestepping and clinching to avoid further punishment, and although he had Houck going with solid blows to the stomach in the 19th he was too weak to follow up his advantage.
Supported by the Philadelphia Public Ledger, Houck promptly laid claim to the title. However, outside of a few quarters of Paris and Philadelphia he found himself virtually ignored.