By David A. Avila
BURBANK, CALIF.-A bloody contest between San Antonio’s Casey “The Wizard” Ramos and Colombia’s Jonathan “Popeye” Perez ended in a technical decision that went in favor of the Texan lightweight on Saturday.
The Hollywood stars, boxing stars and future stars showed up to watch Ramos (22-0) remain undefeated against counter-punching Perez (35-14) at the Burbank Marriott Convention Center. The Top Rank and Bash Boxing promotion was attended by actor Mickey Rourke, world titlist Vasyl Lomachenko and contender Gilberto Ramirez.
Ramos took control early in his fight with Colombia’s Perez, a counter-puncher. But immediately in the first round he was bloodied in the nose. Despite the blood, the quicker-fisted Texan was able hit and escape return fire round after round. A knockdown from a left hook sent Perez down for a second. He said it was a slip but he did absorb a punch and went down.
“I dropped him with a left hand,” said Ramos. “If I was a little sharper I would have knocked him out earlier.”
Perez landed some shots with force, but not enough to slow down the pace of Ramos. Jabs and combinations rained on Perez who rarely fired jabs from his arsenal.
“He was tough,” said Ramos. “He was a veteran.”
A collision of heads caused a welt alongside the right eye of Ramos. Soon, blood seeped from the welt and caused the ringside physician to check the Texas lightweight’s vision. He nodded yes on two different occasions.
“I had to stay focused and do my business,” said the serious sounding Ramos.
Finally in the fourth round Perez began to mount an attack. He connected some big right hands but Ramos did not seem stunned or hurt. Still, it was the Colombian’s best round.
Ramos came out swinging with more intensity in the sixth round. Blood was seeping out and it seemed to force the Texan to pick up the pace. A perfect overhand right caught Perez perfectly and wobbled the Colombian. It was the best punch so far in the fight.
Blood was flowing like a small stream down the face of Ramos. It was definitely going to be stopped and was finally halted by referee Raul Caiz Sr. in the eighth round. All three judges saw it the same at 80-71 in favor of Ramos.
South El Monte’s Arnold Barboza (11-0, 4 KOs) out-slugged Vacaville’s Max Becerra (8-2-2, 5 KOs) in a six round super lightweight clash between talented prospects. Barboza was just busier and more accurate but Becerra had his moments. No knockdowns were scored in a fight that saw Becerra bring several dozen fans down from Northern California. Two judges scored it 60-54 and one 59-55 for Barboza.
Sacramento’s Guy Robb (18-1, 8 KOs) stopped Colombia’s Carlos Padilla (15-4-1, 9 KOs) at the end of round four to win by technical knockout. The super featherweight fight looked even on paper but Robb was much sharper and accurate from the opening bell. Padilla tried setting up for the knockout but was caught in his own trap by the quicker Robb. A four-punch combination ending with a left to the body floored Padilla in his own corner toward the end of the fourth round. Padilla survived the round but his corner called the fight. Robb collects his eight knockout win.
Colombia’s Miguel Marriaga (22-1, 18 KOs) won a somewhat surprising decision over Adones Aguelo (24-13-2) of the Philippines after eight rounds. Marriaga started quickly in the first half of the fight, but Aguelo had the Colombian literally on the run the last four rounds. Maybe the judges were influenced by the records. Two judges scored 77-75 and one had it 79-73 all for Marriaga. The crowd booed the decision.
Miguel Alcantara (2-0) stopped Marco Alcaraz at 1:31 of the second round of their super bantamweight match. Alcantara pummeled the willing Alcaraz who never tasted the canvas but was taking too many punches. Referee Lou Moret made the wise stoppage.