Gesta destroys Valle
Ringside report & photos by Felipe Leon
With the majority of the over 1,100 boxing fans packed into San Diego's Four Points Sheraton rabidly supporting him, San Diego's own Filipino lightweight sensation Mercito "No Mercy" Gesta (20-0-1, 10 KOs) made quick work of battle-tested Ivan "Relampago" Valle (28-10-3, 24 KOs) in two quick rounds.
The scheduled eight-round lightweight main event was broadcast nationally by spanish language Telefutura's weekly "Solo Boxeo Tecate" and presented by Golden Boy Promotions with Jorge Marron Production in association with Don Chargin Promotions and Bobby D. Presents.
With a haircut that displayed his Pinoy pride, the southpaw Gesta, originally of Mandaue, Cebu, Philippines, stepped into the ring to the cheers of his hometown crowd as he climbed up the steps to face on paper his stiffest test to date. Valle of Los Mochis, Mex, previously had faced such world class opposition as Humberto "Zorrita" Soto, Juan Carlos Salgado and Javier Juaregui while Gesta performing in his fouth fight this year had stopped four out of his last five.
The bout began slow enough as the taller Valle circle around with his arms in front of him ready to catch a Gesta punch. As soon as Gesta began to land his jab, the difference in speed was apparent as Valle reacted to slowly to stop the straight right. Mid way through the round, Gesta scored with a counter straight left that would mark the beginning of the end for Valle. The Los Mochis native began pedaling until his back was against the ropes and Gesta let loose a barrage of punches that landed more than Valle slipped. Gesta brought the action back to the center of the ring and succeeded for a moment to back up the Filipino against the ropes and land to the body until Gesta decided he had enough and slipped out of the way.
As Gesta took the action back to the center of the ring he again counter punched Valle but this time with a right hook that sat down Valle on the canvas. Valle beat the count but on shaky legs only to be met with another right hook that sent him down again. With only seconds left in the first round, Gesta landed another straight left that hurt Valle but the bell saved the Mochiteco.
Gesta, who holds the NABO Youth lightweight title, wasted no time in the second as he welcomed Valle to the round with a jab followed with another straight left that once again sent Valle to the ropes. This time, Gesta unleashed hell on Valle which forced chief second Mauel Montiel, father of WBC bantamweight champion Fernando Montiel, to step unto the apron and halt the beating. Official time was :26 of the second round.
"No, I didn't expect it to be that quick but it happened," the WBO #12 ranked Gesta said after the fight when asked if he imagined such an early night. "I am confident in myself and I always believe that I am going to win but I knew he was tough but I didn't expect to end this early."
"I know I had him hurt in the first round so I just listened to my corner and went to finish it in the second," Gesta added. "I don't know what is next but I am ready for anything."
Franco Gets the Job Done
In the semi-main event, Riverside, CA's Michael "Lil' Warrior" Franco (17-0, 11 KOs) remained undefeated as he earned a workman-like unanimous decision over shop worn journeyman Adolfo "Terror" Landeros (20-16, 9 KOs) over eight rounds. Franco had not seen action in eleven months after suffering an eye issue that he had corrected recently.
Judge Gwen Adair had it 80-72 while Johnny Davis saw it 79-73 and Fritz Warner scored it 78-74.
The first round was a methodical one despite both fighters throwing punches from the opening bell. Both had their moments as Landeros landed a nice left hook and Franco a hard right near the end of the round. The fireworks began in the second from the guns of Franco as he began to turn his punches hard in the inside and land hooks from both fists and then quickly follow them up with uppercuts. Landeros was game and stayed in the pocket, scoring with an occasional hard upper cut himself but they were few and far between. Franco made his right hand a weapon to be reckoned with in the third as he began to land it at will which caused Landeros nose to bleed extensively. Landeros had his moment as he trapped Franco at the end of the round and landed a series of hard left hooks to the visibly soft body of Franco.
The first half of the fourth was all Franco as he battered Landeros from pillar to post, always staying in the chest of Landeros. In the second half of the round, the action slowed down and that gave Landeros a chance to land some punches of his own. Landeros got his second wind in the fifth as he stood up from his stool throwing punches and making Franco take a step back. Franco was still able to trap Landeros against the corner and put in work on the body before Landeros slipped out.
The bout continued the same ebb and flow until the final bell with Landeros fighting tough but Franco being to young and better skilled for Landeros to ever be in the fight.
Bojorquez Pulls out First Win
Tijuana amateur standout Christian Bojorquez (1-0) made his pro debut a good one although tougher than it should have been as he was awarded a hard fought majority decision over Salvador Cifuentes (0-1) in a super bantamweight four round fight. Bojorquez did not use his lankier, taller frame to keep the charging Cifuentes of Chula Vista, CA, at bay. Instead, he fought the busy Cifuentes' fight as he engaged in exchanges in the inside in which Cifuentes got the best of the majority of the time. Bojorquez did employ his boxing skills at times and when he did, Cifuentes had no answer for the long straight jab followed with a hard right hand that would break through Cifuentes' high guard. Bojorquez also had success with a sneaky lead left hook to the head that would stun Cifuentes every time in landed. At the end, Bojorquez did enoug to convince the judges that he deserved his first profesional nod.
Two out of the three judges agreed with Gwen Adair awarding him a score of 40-36 while Johnny Davis saw it39-37. Fritz Warner scored it an even 38-38.
After sharing a draw and Quintana taking a unanimous decision in their two prior face offs, local favorite Amaris "Diamond Girl" Quintana (3-0-2) once again was awarded a unanimous decision over the brave Gloria Salas (3-5-1, 1KO) of Reseda, CA, in a jr. flyweight female bloody four rounder. Salas controlled the action when she fought from the outside and early in the first round she landed a hard right hand to the face of Quintana which began the faucet-like bleeding of the hometown favorite's nose. Quintana's nose bled for the rest of the fight as she forced the fight into a brawl and scored effectively in the inside especially with uppercuts from either fist. Salas tired out in the second half and stopped from boxing giving Quintana enough chance to earn the win. Judge Johnny Davis saw it 39-37 while Fritz Warner and Gwen Adair scored it an inexplicable 40-36.
In a rough and tumble four round welterweight bout, Mark Salser (11-, 9KOs) had all he could handle as he remained undefeated against a game Juan Carlos Diaz (5-8, 3KOs). Salser of Mansfield, OH, began the bout hot and heavy but Diaz survived the early storm to have some good moments through out the bout. Salser scored a flash knock down mid way through the third round which was enough to give him the nod with judges. The official scores were 40-35, 39-36 and and a much more accurate 38-37.
In a special note: A special ten count was held for fallen boxer Felix "Gato" Castro who tragically lost his life a week and a half ago in a freak accident. The start up middleweight amassed a standout amateur career and as a professional held a 4-0, 2KOs record. May he Rest In Peace.
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