By Rocco Morales and Miguel Maravilla at ringside
Photos: Big Joe Miranda
In a shocking upset, former two division world champion, Jhonny Gonzales (55-8, 47KO) knocked out previously undefeated champion Abner Mares (26-1-1, 13 KOs) at 2:55 of the very first round on Saturday night at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. Gonzales landed a perfect left hook that Mares seemingly never saw coming that hurt Mares badly and had him down for an eight count before rising on very unsteady legs. When action resumed, Gonzales immediately went in for the kill and landed a barrage of punches culminating with a left hook / right cross combo that sunk Mares to the canvas. Referee Jack Reiss deemed Mares unfit to continue and with that, what looked like a farewell fight for Gonzales, now breathes new life back into his career.
In a war, unbeaten former IBF bantamweight world champion Leo “Terremoto” Santa Cruz (25-0-1, 15KO) captured the WBC super bantamweight belt with a scintillating knockout over now former champ Victor Terrazas (37-3-1, 21KO). Santa Cruz opened the bout strongly and was clearly the stronger of the two fighters, battering Terrazas with accurate shots to the head and body. Terrazas looked clearly in trouble as early as the second round and had no answer to keep the younger and stronger Santa Cruz at bay. Santa Cruz dropped Terrazas hard midway through the third round for a 9 count and then a second time for an eight count. Upon seeing the condition of the battered champion, referee Lou Moret called an end to the bout at 2:09 of the third round to make Santa Cruz the new WBC super bantamweight champion in a bout that he made look easy. Terrazas’ right eye was swollen shut.
Unbeaten featherweight Julian Ramirez (9-0, 6KO) made quick work of Abraham Rubio (3-1-1, 1KO) but not before punishing him for the entire first round before pummeling him into the ropes and unleashing a flurry of punches that led to the referee to stop the fight at 2:58 of the first round. Rubio was bloodied and battered within the first minute of the fight from the precision punching of Ramirez and the referee looked close to stopping the bout for the last 90 seconds of the bout before he was left with no other choice but to finally stop it.
Unbeaten junior welterweight Antonio Orozco (17-0, 13 KOs) of San Diego scored a third round stoppage over Ivan Hernandez (29-3, 2 KOs) of Miami. Orozco’s relentless body attack was too much Hernandez as referee Raul Caiz Sr. stopped the bout at 1:39 of round three.
Olympian Joseph Diaz Jr. (7-0, 5KO) was very impressive in his third round destruction of Noel Mendoza (6-3-1, 1KO). The southpaw Diaz landed impressive combinations and hard left crosses from the beginning and punished Mendoza for 2.5 rounds before dropping him midway through the third round. Mendoza showed a lot of heart to get up but then was quickly hammered to the canvas by a Diaz left cross, right hook combo that dropped him hard and led to the referee waving off the bout at 1:54 of the third round of a scheduled six round featherweight bout.
Olympian Dominic Breazeale (6-0, 6KO) kept his knockout streak intact with a fifth round knockout over Lenroy Thomas. It was a mostly lackluster fight until Thomas woke a sleeping giant after landing a couple low blows that angered Breazeale. The end came at 2:29 of the fourth round of the scheduled eight round heavyweight bout after Breazeale hurt Thomas with a right hand and finished him off in the corner with a perfectly placed uppercut. Thomas took a knee but had no desire to continue and was counted out by the referee.
Rey Vargas (15-0, 14KO) carried Juanito Rubillar (49-22, 7, 24KO) through nearly 4 rounds of a scheduled eight round featherweight bout before ending the bout with a single clubbing right hand that sent Rubillar to his knees and ended the bout at 2:58 of the fourth round. It was a lackluster fight where the much shorter Rubillar seemingly had no chance from the beginning.
Jesus Ruiz (29-5-5, 21KO) won a unanimous decision victory over determined, but outgunned, Enrique Quevedo (14-6-1, 9KO) in an eight round super bantamweight bout. It was a competitive fight but Ruiz clearly landed the more telling blows and was able to control the action from the outside with a stinging jab and good body work. Judges scored the bout 80-72, 79-73 and 80-72, all in favor of Ruiz.
Super Middleweight Ronald Gavril (6-0, 5 KOs) scored a second round knockout over David Courchaine (2-3, 2 KOs). A huge right hand floored Courchaine as referee Raul Caiz Sr. stopped the action at 1:50 of round two.
In the opening bout from the Stub Hub Center, super middleweight Lanell Bellows (5-0-1, 4 KOs) won a unanimous decision over Leshon Sims (5-16, 3 KOs). Bellows attacked the body throughout the entire bout stalking the taller Sims en route to a four round decision as all three judges scored it 40-36.