ONTARIO-In a border war it was Tijuana’s Manuel Roman who pulled out a majority decision win against San Diego’s Sergio Espinoza in a tight battle for the WBC Continental America’s flyweight title on Monday.
The crowd was not pleased at all.
Roman used his height, sharp punching and agility to escape with a close win over Espinoza at the Doubletree Hotel before more than 1,000 people at the Thompson Boxing Promotion card. It was televised by Fox en Espanol.
The tall flyweight Roman (12-0-2) commanded the first two rounds with sharp combinations against Espinoza (15-5-1) who starts slowly in most fights. The left hook scored well for Tijuana’s Roman.
Behind the overhand right hand Espinoza stormed back into the fight and swarmed his opponent in the middle of the title fight. Right after right hand found its mark for three rounds.
In the last three rounds, Roman rallied behind good upper body movement that made it difficult for the San Diego fighter to score his usual right hand. Espinoza pressed the action with constant flurries against the taller Roman but couldn’t land a telling blow.
The judges scored it 95-95, and 98-92, 97-93 for Roman.
“It was my boxing and my right hand that won the fight,” said Roman.
Espinoza felt otherwise.
“I felt the judges made a bad decision,” Espinoza said.
Fontana’s Jesus Berrelleza (5-1, 4 KOs) lost his first pro fight against Canada’s former amateur star Jason Douglas (3-0, 2 KOs) in a good back-and-forth action light heavyweight contest. The Fontana slugger seemed to have the middle rounds but Douglas used his jab to keep distance and win a majority decision 60-54, 57-57, 58-56 according to the judges.
Riverside’s Rafael Lopez (5-0-, 5 KOs) continued his undefeated knockout streak with a first round stoppage over Detroit’s Shawn Purdy (3-4, 3 KOs) in a junior middleweight bout. A right hand wobbled Purdy and Lopez swarmed him with punches that forced referee Raul Caiz to stop the fight at 29 seconds of the opening stanza.
In a battle between two Jesus Hernandez’s it was the Los Angeles version who emerged the winner with a fourth round technical stoppage over Riverside’s Hernandez (2-3) at 1:03 of the fourth round. Hernandez of L.A.’s record is 6-0.
Junior welterweight fighter Danny Escobar (1-0) pounded out a first round technical knockout over Pomona’s Ricardo Sanchez (0-1). It was both fighters' pro debut.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV