By John Cannon at ringside
Saturday night’s lackluster performance in his first shot for a title wasn’t the way Golden Boy prospect Carlos Molina envisioned it would be. However, his performance was good enough to capture the vacant NABO Intercontinental Lightweight title as he scored a unanimous decision victory over Marcus Jimenez in the main event of “Solo Boxeo Tecate: Border Explosion” at the McAllen Convention Center. The judges at ringside scored the fight 99-91, 97-93 and 96-94.
“This performance was not to my taste tonight,” said Molina, who improves to 17-0. “I wish I could have given the fans a better fight because that is always my number one goal. But I am excited to capture my first ever title and now it should propel me into the top 15.”
Both fighters seemed cautious through the first three rounds and were trying to feel each other out. However, Molina finally connect with the first solid shot of the night in the fourth round as he caught Jimenez (18-3) with a left hook. Molina started becoming more active in the fifth round and remained that way throughout the rest of the fight.
“It was a very slow fight and not really to my taste,” said Molina. “His style really slowed me down and it seemed like he was waiting for me to do something early on. I was able to make the necessary adjustments in the later rounds and started applying the pressure a little more.”
Unlike the main event, the co-main was definitely a crowd pleaser as Houston native Victor Sanchez (3-3-1) pulled off a stunning upset by defeating undefeated prospect Jerry Guevara (7-1) by unanimous decision.
Both fighters went toe-to-toe with each other throughout the entire fight and were involved in an old fashioned slugfest. Guevara used his speed to his advantage in the first couple of rounds as he pounded on Sanchez and even dropped him in the first round. But in the third round, Sanchez started to get back into the fight as he nailed Guevara with combinations and eventually stunned him with a right hook later in the round.
Sanchez continued the onslaught in the fifth and sixth rounds as he kept chopping down Guevara and sent him to the canvas for the first time in the fifth round with a thunderous body shot and twice in the sixth which clearly won the fight for him.
Though Sanchez came to the fight as a clear cut underdog, he was confident after defeating two of Top Rank’s premiere prospects.
“Coming into the fight, I’m sure most people thought I was a nobody after looking at my record and thought Guevara would pick up the win,” said Sanchez. “However, I got experience facing prospects and I proved tonight I could bang with the best.”
In other action, Lyford’s Eric Molina (19-2) returned to the ring after suffering a heartbreaking first round knockout loss to Chris Arreola back in February and defeated Andrew Greeley (14-40) by unanimous decision in the special attraction bout.
Also victorious were Isaac and Marc Torres, Enrique Alvarez, James Cantu and Elio Ruiz.