By Lee Bates from South America
Noe Alcoba (21-1, 13 KOs) of Uruguay knocked out Mariano Carrera (32-6, 23 KOs) of Argentina in the fourth round to win the WBO latino middleweight title in a battle between two former world title challengers. The bout took place Thursday night at the Estadio Luna Park in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Carrerra actually won the WBA world middleweight title when he defeated then champion Javier Castillejo in 2006 but tested positive for a banned substance and Castillejo was reinstated as champion. They rematched the following year in a non-title match where Castillejo stopped Carrera in six. Alcoba lost to WBA middleweight champion Felix Sturm by unanimous decision in his world title challenge in 2007.
Carrera dropped Alcoba with a jab early in round one and it appeared at that point it might be a short nights work for him. However, Alcoba beat the count easily and actually began stalking Carrera but not throwing many punches. In round two, Carrera was much busier throwing a variety of combinations as Alcoba continued to stalk him but again not throwing many punches. The fight seriously changed in round three as Alcoba sent Carrera hard to the canvas with a vicious uppercut. Carrera beat the count but moments later was rocked again but stayed on his feet. The end came in round four after Alcoba sent Carrera crashing to the canvas with a thunderous left hook. Carrera courageously attempted to beat the count but was arising unsteadily as the referee counted him out.
In her third attempt WBC/WBA super bantamweight champion Marcela Eliana Acuna of Argentina (33-5,16 KOs) defeated Alicia Ashley (14-9-1, 1 KO) by majority decision to retain her WBA super bantamweight title. Ashley previously defeated Acuna twice by decision in 2002 and 2003 with both bouts like this one taking place in Argentina.
From round one Ashley showed that her two previous victories over Acuna were not flukes and that her being 41 years old was not going to be issue. The southpaw Ashley came out aggressive attacking Acuna with stiff straight lefts and worked the body as well. This pattern continued over the first half of the fight. In the middle rounds Acuna found success with overhand rights that frequently found the mark. One overhand right seriously snapped Ashley´s head back bringing the Argentinian crowd to their feet. The punch looked worse than it was as Ashley was not hurt. Rounds 7 through 9 saw Ashley put on boxing clinic as she used her reach advantage and boxed from the outside while turning and keeping the charging champion Acuna at bay with sharp jabs and straight lefts. In the 10th and final round Ashley come out agressive as did Acuna in a round that could have went either way. It appeared that Ashley had done enough to win the world titles and beat Acuna for the third time. The judges however had it different scoring it 96-94 and 96-95 for Acuna. The other judge scored it 95-95.