Tanajara and Esparza Win Impressively on a Short Program at the Belasco

LOS ANGELES-Thousands of miles from home Hector Tanajara showed the L.A. crowd what he’s all about as he powered through Ensenada’s Hector Ambriz in a battle of Hectors on Friday night.

San Antonio’s Tanajara (13-0, 5 KOs) battled to a unanimous decision victory over Mexico’s Ambriz (12-5-1, 6 KOs) at the Belasco Theater in downtown Los Angeles. It was his first co-main event and it was televised.

It’s been three years since Tanajara (on the left) first signed with Golden Boy Promotions and the lean, tall Texas super featherweight found himself with an equally lean tall opponent in Ambriz. It took one round for Tanajara to find his footing.

Trained by Robert Garcia in Riverside, Calif. the San Antonio fighter known as “Finito” used a good left jab to fight through the stubborn Mexican fighter. Though he tried multiple times to connect with the left uppercut he never could find success with it. But the check hook landed many times.

“I almost had him out but this guy can take a punch,” said Tanajara.

Tanajara’s best rounds were in the second when he caught Ambriz with a lead overhand right and the sixth when a counter left hook seemed to daze the Mexican fighter. But there were no knockdowns in the fight.

After eight rounds Tanajara was ruled the winner on all three judge’s cards 80-72.

“I’m ready for a regional title as soon as Golden Boy Promotions says we’re ready for it,” Tanajara said.


Houston’s Marlen Esparza (5-0, 1 KO) scored her first knockout win of her pro career when she stopped Philadelphia’s Laetizia Campana (2-5) in the third round of their flyweight match at Belasco Theater.

Before an enthusiastic crowd including Seniesa Estrada, a potential foe, Esparza dominated the out-gunned Campana behind combinations and strong rights to the head and lefts to the body.

Campana tried valiantly to return fire but she kept running into big blows including a quick three-punch combination that left the Philadelphia boxer bleeding from her nose in the opening round.

At the end of the second round that saw Esparza dominate with big punches the referee walked to Campana’s corner and asked if she wanted to continue. He then walked over to the inspector and both nodded.

Esparza walked straight toward Campana and began firing straight powerful blows again. Referee Zack Young did not hesitate to stop the fight 11 seconds into round three for a technical knockout win.

In a featherweight fight Pasadena’s Jose Vargas (4-0, 3 KOs) used a left hook to the body to stop Mexico’s Jorge Careaga (1-2) at 52 seconds of the first round.

“I get in a lot of good work with my teammates Joet and Jousce Gonzalez,” said Vargas. “They really push me hard.”

There were only three pro fights on the card because of several cancellations and failures to make weight.

Photo credit: Al Applerose

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