13 in Lanark.
Dumbarton fighter Ward made Alloa’s Stevenson work hard for any success, countering with sharp jabs any time Stevenson came in for the attack.
It was only in the third round that the bout went to the ground for the first time and it was Stevenson who found himself in top position.
But Ward’s reach allowed him to land a number of blows from the bottom, one of which opened a cut that the referee could not ignore.
Ward was over the moon with his performance against a very highly rated opponent and said he hoped the result would erase the memory of his first pro fight which finished in defeat in February.
Ward said: “That was the real Gary Ward that you saw tonight.
“Adam is very good but I did everything I wanted to do.
“I opened up the cut with an elbow and as soon as I landed with it I knew it had cut him badly.
“The blood was pouring put of it. It was a good stoppage.”
Three other pro bouts graced the card at Lanark Auction Market with local boy Martin Delaney thrilling the sold-out crowd with a clinical stoppage of Irish opponent Stephen Kingsbury inside a minute of the first round.
Lightweight Delaney came flying out of the traps, using ferocious strikes to get the fight to the ground before making a perfect transition to a rear naked choke which forced Kingsbury to tap.
Scotland’s first ever pro MMA fight at flyweight also served up high entertainment with Brian Hyslop scoring a unanimous decision victory over Darren Gilchrist.
Hyslop, 24, comes from a long line of pro boxers and his fast hands and head movement gave him the edge over the three rounds.
At the opposite end of the weight spectrum, heavyweights Rab Truesdale and Tam Watson put on a back and forward war which resulted in the judges scoring a majority draw.
Truesdale looked the much more dangerous man in the stand-up exchanges but Watson’s Commonwealth Games wrestling pedigree meant he was in control whenever the fight went to the canvas.
With both men out on their feet in the third round, Truesdale found his second wind to unleash a brutal flurry which Watson did very well to survive.
The undercard too was littered with incredible fights, none more impressive than the semi-pro welterweight clash between Lukasz Szarafiniak and Scott Flynn.
Szarafiniak, of Edinburgh’s Headhunters team, stunned the crowd with a devastating spinning back fist which had Flynn out cold and requiring medical attention.
Charlie McLean’s flurry of knees against Robin Montgomery brought to an end an entertaining semi-pro heavyweight fight and handed McLean a TKO win in round one.
Also at semi-pro level, William McCurdy scored a tapout win over David Mackie due to an armbar in their 75kg catchweight encounter.
And at semi-pro middleweight, a fantastic display of jiu-jitsu skills saw Alan Johnson finish John Dilcock with a perfectly executed kimura submission in the first round.
Sportfight Scotland 13 full results
Main card pro fights:
Martin Delaney defeated Stephen Kingsbury by tapout due to rear naked choke in round one.
Rab Truesdale and Tam Watson was declared a majority draw.
Brian Hyslop defeated Darren Gilchrist by unanimous decision.
Gary Ward beat Adam Stevenson by referee stoppage due to a cut in round three.
Undercard semi-pro fights:
Alan Johnson beat Josh Dilcock by tapout due to a kimura in round one.
Sean Epton defeated Dan Wilson by unanimous decision.
John Paul Grace beat Richard Shore by submission due to armbar in round one.
William McCurdy defeated David Mackie by tapout due to armbar in round one.
Nathan Wilson beat Sean Swailes by submission due to a guillotine choke in round two.
Lukasz Szarafiniak defeated Scott Flynn by knockout due to a spinning back fist in round two.
Charlie McLean beat Robin Montgomery by TKO due to knees in round one.
Undercard Muay Thai fight:
Yvonne McCabe defeated Francis Thomson by split decision.