LOS ANGELES-South El Monte’s Jojo Diaz Jr. plowed into Mexico’s Juan Luis Hernandez and showed the L.A. crowd just why he was a former Olympian and still undefeated on Friday.
Diaz (15-0, 10 Kos) faced Mexican veteran Hernandez (17-5-1, 9 Kos) and thoroughly dominated him with speed, precision and hellish body shots that impressed the sold out crowd at Belasco Theater. The super bantamweight fight was promoted by Golden Boy Promotions.
In the opening bell Diaz showed that he could hit and not get hit as Hernandez tried valiantly to corner the speedy boxer. Every time he got close Diaz punished him with blows to the body and head with lightning speed.
“I tried to find ways to break the guy down,” said Diaz, who participated in the 2012 Olympics in London. “I wanted to dictate the pace of the fight and that’s what I did.”
Diaz landed some powerful right hooks to the body that wore down Hernandez and down he went in the second round. He continued.
The third round saw Diaz wobble Hernandez with a straight left cross. Hernandez refused to back up and when he attacked was met with two right hooks to the body and a left cross and down he went again. The fight continued and another right hook to the body sunk Hernandez for another knockdown. He got up and at the end of the round both fighters fired punches and down went Hernandez like a lump. He would not beat the count and Diaz scored another knockout.
“I made sure to take him out with body shots,” said Diaz.
Irish middleweight Jason Quigley (4-0, 4 Kos) needed less than two minutes to knock down Lanny Dardar (2-3-2) in their middleweight showdown. Sharp right hands floored Dardar twice in the first round. Though the fighter from Louisiana got up, Quigley pummeled him with a crisp one-two that forced the referee to stop the fight at 1:34 of the first round. Quigley looks fast for a middleweight.
A junior lightweight battle between two local prospects ended in a majority decision win for Carlos Morales (7-1-3, 2 Kos) over Santiago Guevara (8-1, 3 Kos) after six back and forth rounds. Morales used his height and reach to continually land one-twos throughout the fight against the undefeated Guevara. A cut alongside the right eye of Morales did not prove a distraction as Morales seemed to get off a little more.
Las Vegas prospect Cesar Quinonez (2-0) struggled a bit after knocking down Oscar Rojas (0-2) of Salinas, Calif. twice in the first two rounds of the lightweight action. But the two knockdowns proved beneficial in winning by unanimous decision 40-34, 39-35, 38-36. Quinonez is trained by Fernando Vargas in Las Vegas.
Jesus Delgado (4-0-1) tried hard for the knockout against Las Vegas prizefighter Rocco Espinoza (4-12) but never could hurt the Nevadan lightweight. After four rounds Delgado was the clear winner 40-36 on all three cards.
Emilio Sanchez (7-0, 6 Kos) blew out Puerto Rico’s Luis Cosme (8-6-1, 3 Kos) at 2:00 of the first round. Sanchez scored three knockdowns. The second knockdown came by right hand to the head. The final knockdown came via left hook to the body.