TEMECULA-A riveting junior lightweight fight between two excellent southpaws ended abruptly when Tyrone Harris landed big left hands on Marvin Quintero that caused the referee to stop a close fight on Friday at Pechanga Resort and Casino.
Most of the sold out crowd booed the stoppage.
“That’s what’s ruining boxing,” shouted Gary Shaw the co-promoter of the event. “My guy has an iron chin. Why did he stop it?”
More than 2,800 fans saw seven rounds of superb junior lightweight action that went back and forth.
It’s not often that two southpaws with speed and power face each other in the ring. Quintero (16-2, 12 KOs) and Harris (24-5, 16 KOs) traded evenly for most of the fight to the delight of the crowd.
Bombs were being exchanged freely but neither fighter seemed shy about unloading.
After allowing Quintero to gain momentum, Harris opened up the fourth round win some pinpoint punches in combination. For most of the fourth round Harris kept the pressure, then Quintero landed a double left hand to stop the flow. Harris mounted another attack to win the fourth and fifth rounds with a stiff right jab and right hook.
Tijuana’s Quintero decided to unload more combinations in the sixth round and that proved the antidote in reversing Harris’s momentum. Some quick combinations mixed with uppercuts found the mark.
The seventh round saw Harris tiring and allowing Quintero to overwhelm with punches. Combination after combination from the frisky Mexican fighter seemed to put the Michigan fighter in comfortable retreat.
After more than seven sparkling rounds of boxing, with Quintero mounting another rally, two big left hands snapped the Mexican fighter’s head and forced him to retreat to the corner. Referee Raul Caiz Jr. moved in quickly and when Harris landed another blow, the referee stopped the fight to the derision of the crowd at 1:05 of the round for a technical knockout win for Harris. The scorecards showed Quintero was ahead according to two of three judges.
Boos cascaded throughout the arena.
“My guy was never knocked down,” said Shaw, who promotes Quintero.
Harris, who was coming off a loss at lightweight a few months ago, felt the referee’s decision was correct.
“The referee knows what he’s doing. If you can’t defend yourself the fight has to be stopped,” said Harris. “I wasn’t paying any attention I was just concentrating on knocking him out.”
Quintero said he may have broken his right hand in the second round. A doctor’s examination said it could e a chipped bone.
“My hand really hurt. I broke it and couldn’t hit him back,” said Quintero. “I tried to continue but I really couldn’t hurt him. I’m stunned.”
In the semi main event two bantamweights with big power faced off as Lancaster’s Chris “The Hitman” Avalos (11-0, 9 KOs) paired up with Missouri’s southpaw bomber Andre Wilson (11-3-1, 9 KOs). After a tentative first round that saw few punches fired or landed, the second round erupted into a firefight and down went Wilson from a crackling left hook. He beat the count but 20 seconds later another barrage of Avalos punches resulted in a second knockdown. Referee Jose Cobian carefully looked at Wilson’s eyes and decided to allow him another opportunity. Avalos pounced on the Missouri fighter and unleashed some more savage blows forcing the referee to halt the fight at 1:28
“I just did what I did. I went in there with the mindset that I was going to win,” said Avalos who was facing his first left-hander as a pro. “We’ve been working with a lot of southpaws. We figured the uppercuts and double jabs would work.”
Wilson, who probably won the first round with slightly more aggression, was surprised by the second round assault.
“I got lazy with my punches. After the first round I got way too comfortable with him,” said Wilson of St. Joseph, Missouri. “I thought I could control the fight after the first round. He caught me unexpectedly.”
Mexico City’s Freddie Hernandez (25-1, 18 KOs) was having his way throughout the welterweight bout until he knocked down Florida’s Hicklet Lau (20-20-2, 9 KOs) in the final round for the second time. A clash of heads ensued and Hernandez dripped blood over his right eye. The fight continued and another accidental clash of heads opened up an even bigger cut on the Mexican fighter’s right eye. Luckily the fight ended with Hernandez winning by unanimous decision 80-69 and 80-70 twice. But the two cuts were costly for his future fights.
Escondido’s Deshon Johnson (7-2-2, 5 KOs) stopped East L.A.’s Alan Velasco (8-3-2, 3 KOs) with flood of punches at 2:46 of the second round in a junior middleweight clash.
Duarte’s Ariz Ambriz (11-0, 6 KOs) overwhelmed Chula Vista’s Daniel Gonzalez (11-21) in the first round of a welterweight fight to remain undefeated. From the bell Ambriz let go of the punches and forced Gonzalez intro retreat. Referee Cobian stopped the uneven bout at 1:34 of the first round for a technical knockout.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV