By Miguel Maravilla and Jeff Reiners at ringside
Photos: Chris Cozzone
In the second classic between them, Mike Alvarado (34-1, 23 KOs) won a scintillating twelve round unanimous decision over previously unbeaten former WBA lightweight champion Brandon Rios (31-1-1, 22 KOs) to claim the vacant WBO interim jr welterweight title on Saturday night in front of a crowd of 5,418 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.
It took about half-a-round before the war was on. Rios rocked Alvarado in round two and had him staggered, but Alvarado returned the favor and rocked Rios in round three. Alvarado shaded the fourth, and Rios had the advantage in the fifth. Alvarado’s face showed plenty of damage entering round six, while Rios was relatively unmarked. Rios had the upper hand in rounds six and seven, but Alvarado landed huge bombs to stagger Rios in the eighth. Alvarado’s movement somewhat neutralized Rios’ pressure in the late rounds, but Rios began to connect again in the eleventh. Alvarado boxed beautifully in the twelfth. Scores were 115-113, 115-113, 114-113.
Rios, who won the first fight by seventh round TKO, immediately called for a third fight. Alvarado said let’s do it, this time in Colorado. Both fighters were taken directly to the hospital after the fight.
Impressive win for unbeaten jr welterweight Terence Crawford (20-0, 15 KOs), who dominated Breidis Prescott (27-4, 20 KOs) over ten rounds. Crawford boxed beautifully to earn a 99-91, 97-93, 100-90 unanimous decision. Crawford took the fight on two weeks notice and moved up a division.
Unbeaten super featherweight Miguel Berchelt (17-0, 14 KOs) pummeled Carlos Claudio (15-10-3, 8 KOs) until referee Kenny Bayless waved it off at the 1:53 mark.
Unbeaten U.S. Olympian jr welterweight Jose Ramirez (2-0, 2 KOs) needed just 66 seconds to annihilate Charle Dubray (1-1, 1 KO). Dubray down twice. A left hook to the body ended it.
Unbeaten super welterweight Michael Finney (11-0, 9 KOs) scored a brutal fifth round KO over Osvaldo Rojas (7-3-2, 2 KOs). A left hook to the body did in Rojas. Time was 1:49.
Unbeaten super bantamweight Tremaine Williams (6-0, 2 KOs) outpointed John Herrera (4-6-1, 2 KOs) over four by scores of 40-36.
Unbeaten heavyweight Brett Rather (3-0, 0 KOs) recovered from a first round knockdown to defeat Juan Guajardo (2-1, 1 KO) by scores of 38-37 on all three cards.
Unbeaten welterweight Juan Heraldez (5-0, 4 KOs) dropped Roberto Lopez (4-5-2, 1 KO) in round two, but was forced to go the distance for the first time in his career. Scores were 40-35 on all cards.
Unbeaten super lightweight Manuel Lopez (2-0, 2 KOs) scored a second round TKO over Jason Tresvan (0-2). Time: 2:06.