A boxing solar eclipse took place as darkness descended on Jesus Soto Karass, but the returning brightness showed a brilliant emerging star in Ryan “KingRy” Garcia on Thursday.
Garcia (12-0, 11 KOs) made the first defense of the NABF Junior super featherweight title with a dominating three rounds resulting in a knockout win over Cesar Valenzuela (14-6-1) at Casino Del Sol in Tucson, Arizona.
The 19-year-old from Victorville, Calif. has leapfrogged to the front of the line of Golden Boy Promotions’ growing stable of prospects.
Could he be the one to equal the “Golden Boy?”
Garcia immediately showed he was the quicker, stronger and more confident fighter inside the boxing ring against the long lean figure of Valenzuela. It was the first time in eight pro bouts that an opponent lasted into the third round. Barely.
A quick left hook was the weapon of choice for Garcia who deposited Valenzuela violently to the floor in the first round and in the third round. Though Valenzuela got up, another violent volley convinced referee Tony Zaino to halt the onslaught at 2:59 of the third round.
It was another knockout victory for the Golden Boy budding star.
It was another side of the light spectrum for Mexico’s Soto Karass, the warrior who has never known how to retreat. Against Dominican speedster Juan Carlos Abreu the fading skills proved disastrous for the Mexican fighter in losing by knockout.
Soto Karass could never seem to lose the heaviness in his legs and arms until around the sixth round. But in the eighth an overhand right stunned the Mexican fighter and two more sent him down in a heap. He beat the count but Abreu unloaded a three-punch combination that forced the referee to stop the fight as Soto Karass crumpled to the ground again. The fight ended at 1:07 of the eighth round.
“I think I need to talk to my family and team,” said Soto Karass after the fight. “But I think the end is near.”
San Antonio’s Hector Tanajara Jr. (11-0, 4 KOs) managed to out-fight Jesus Serrano (17-5-2), a last-minute opponent, over eight rounds to win by unanimous decision. It was a tactical fight that was a lot closer than the scores indicated. But Tanajara scored repeatedly with his uppercuts and straight rights. Over the eight rounds he landed the cleaner blows but Serrano was in the fight and had his best round in the sixth round when he landed a three-punch combination. Two judges scored it 80-72 and a third 79- 73 for Tanajara.
Rafael Gramajo (9-1-2) and veteran German Meraz (58-45-2) battled to a hard fought draw after six rounds in a super featherweight contest. Gramajo, 27, fights out of L.A. but is originally from Kansas. Mexico’s Meraz, 31, walked in with 105 fights in his career and showed his experience in grabbing the draw against the younger fighter.
Cesar Diaz (7-0) won by technical knockout in the fifth round against Pedro Melo (17-18-2) in a super bantamweight match set for six rounds. Diaz fights out of Lancaster, California and is managed by Joel Diaz.
Photo Credit: Tom Hogan / Hogan Photos / GBP
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