WBA interim super flyweight interim champion Nonito Donaire (23-1, 15 KOs) scored a third round KO over late sub Manuel ‘Chango’ Vargas (26-5-1, 11 KOs) in a non-title bout on Saturday night at the famous Las Vegas Hilton Hotel/Casino. Donaire was in command all the way before laying out Vargas for the count with a left uppercut at 1:33. After original challenger Gerson Guerrero failed his physical, Vargas, who was preparing for the WBC title at 108 lbs moved up two divisions on three days notice.
The full WBO bantamweight champion Fernando Montiel (40-2-2, 30 KOs) needed just 2:06 to annihiate previously unbeaten Ciso Morales (14-1, 8 KOs). A left hand to the body put Morales down for the count.
In a clash for the vacant WBO interim bantamweight championship, #1 contender Eric Morel (42-2, 21 KOs) took a split decision against #2 contender Gerry Penalosa (54-8, 34 KOs). Two unintentional headbutts in round six left Penalosa with cuts over both eyes, but the 38-year-old Filipino upped the pressure down the stretch and seemed to deserve the decision. Scores were 115-113, 116-112 Morel, 115-113 Penelosa.
In what is essentially an unofficial featherweight eliminator, Bernabe Concepcion (30-2-1, 17 KOs) won a ten round unanimous decision over Mario Santiago (21-2-1, 14 KOs) to earn a summer title shot against WBO champ Juan Manuel Lopez. With Manny Pacquiao looking on, Concepcion dropped Santiago in round six, then survived a late Santiago rally to win by scores of 98-91, 96-93, 97-92.