INDIO-One fighter felt he needed a knockout to win before entering the ring and that proved prophetic.
After 10 tense back and forth rounds of lightweight action it was Santa Ana's Luis Ramos (21-0, 9 Kos) who emerged with the victory over Hollywood's Raymundo “Sugar” Beltran on Friday at Fantasy Springs Casino.
Despite cuts on both sides of Ramos' eyes he out-battled the veteran Beltran (25-6, 17 KOs) who rallied after the fourth round behind some sizzling left hooks at the Fantasy Springs Casino fight card promoted by Golden Boy Promotions.
The fight looked one-sided for the first three rounds, then Beltran began to time Ramos's attacks with precision left hooks that snapped the sweat off of the Santa Ana southpaw's head. Still, Ramos never wobbled.
“I took his shots,” said Ramos, who won a regional title belt with the decision. “I was a little nervous of the decision cause I knew it was a tough fight.”
All three judges scored it for Ramos. James Jen Kin had it 97-93, Daniel Sandoval 97-93 and Fritz Werner 96-94.
Beltran had predicted before the fight he would not win by decision unless he knocked out Ramos.
Figueroa vs. Perez
An East versus West battle between undefeated lightweight prospects ended in a knockout victory for Texan Omar Figueroa (14-0-1, 11 Kos) after New Jersey's Michael Perez (15-1-1, 9 Kos) couldn't continue after round six.
Perez started out well behind a tight defense but once Figueroa landed some body shots the East Coast boxer began to slow down, citing problems with his legs. Figueroa took over the fight and dominated with more punching to the head and body. Perez just couldn't match the Texan's punch output and the fight was ended at the end of round six.
“It was my leg in round two. I had no power,” said Perez. “I'm really disappointed.”
Figueroa was disappointed he couldn't knock out Perez.
“I was a little disappointed. I gave my best shots and he didn't go down,” Figueroa said of Perez.
Pearson vs. Ishe
Chris Pearson (2-0), who ignored a spot on the U.S. Olympic team, showed why he was enthusiastically pursued by professional promoters and managers as he used his speed to fly past Long Beach tough guy Cleven Ishe (3-5) in a four round middleweight bout. The Ohio-based boxer used his superior quickness including a crunching right uppercut in the last round to win by decision 39-37 on all three cards.
Finney vs. Orozco
Punching machine Michael Finney (8-0, 7 Kos) couldn't finish Minnesota's Hector Orozco (4-10) but pounded out a six-round unanimous decision in a middleweight clash. Finney plopped Orozco down with a short counter left hook in round one but that was all he could muster against the clever fighter. The judges scored it 60-53, 59-54 twice for Finney, who fights out of Las Vegas, but is originally from Smith's Station, Alabama .
Espinoza vs. Mohammad
Rocco Espinoza of Las Vegas beat Naphi Mohammad of Santa Ana by unanimous decision in a four round junior lightweight match, 40-36 on all three cards.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV