photo by Paul GallegosRaul Hirales Jr. (12-0-1, 7 KO's) of La Paz Mexico used speed, accuracy and a high work rate to defeat Charles Huerta (16-2, 8 KO's) of Paramount, California in a scheduled eight round featherweight clash at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in San Diego on Friday night.
Huerta started off well as he flicked a jab in Hirales' face in the first round. Hirales was undeterred and charged forward landing to the body and head. Huerta was working a good strong jab. Both men mixed it up nicely to the delight of the eight hundred plus fans that were in attendance.
Good back-and-forth action quickly turned into a battle of will and determination as both men fought nose to nose in the middle of the ring. Huerta worked the body in the third but his opponent showed little effect as he landed three shots in a row without an answer. Hirales targeted the body repeatedly and landed some border line punches but was not admonished. His repeated south of the border shots eventually caused referee Pat Russell to deduct a point.
The Paramount native boxed nicely in the sixth as he landed some nice hooks. Hirales was not as busy and began breathing through his mouth, a clear sign that he was tiring. Huerta exchanged combinations with Hirales as they battled in the middle of the ring again. It was more good back-and-forth action which kept the audience pumped.
In the eighth round Hirales came out with everything. Huerta fought back as they met head-to-head and tried to back each other up towards the ropes. Huerta was undoubtedly in a tough fight and an upset seemed to be in the making. Both men exchanged until the very end of the round with Hirales getting the best of the situation.
The fight ended with fast and furious combinations. The bell rang and both men raised their hands in anticipation of victory. The scores were read by ring announcer Joe Martinez as 78-73 for Huerta and 77-74 (twice) for Hirales Jr. who got the split decision win.
"He's a very tough fighter but I think that my preparation is what won this fight for me," said Hirales afterwards. "I would gladly give him a rematch if he requests one."
Huerta felt that he pulled off the win. "I thought I won it with all my flurries," said Huerta. "I know I have some little things to work on but I would really like a rematch."
Gary Russell Jr. gets win over Feider Viloria
Featherweight Gary Russell Jr. impressed fans with his blazing speed and slick footwork. His opponent, Feider Viloria, who hails from Nicaragua, is a very capable fighter but he wasn't sure how to deal with Russell’s style. The undefeated prospect moved forward all night as he attacked the body and head of Viloria repeatedly.
It was in the fifth round that Russell landed several quick left hands on Viloria's jaw that dropped him onto the ropes. To his credit, Viloria got up and finished the round. Russell was dominating throughout the six and seventh when a bad unintentional head caused a severe cut over Viloria’s eye. The ring doctor advised the referee to stop the fight. According to California rules when an accidental head butt occurs and one of the fighters cannot continue a decision must be rendered by judges. The scores were unanimous 70-62 (twice) and 69-63, all for the outstanding looking prospect Gary Russell Jr. who improves to 14 wins, 0 losses and nine knockouts. Viloria drops to 23 wins eight losses and 2 draws with 16 knockouts.
Samir batters Myers
aBastie Samir of Ghana used powerful left hooks and uppercuts to overwhelm his opponent Loren Myers of Fresno, California in a middleweight clash. Several left hands landed flush in the first round which left Myers on shaky legs. Samir was relentless in his attack as he repeatedly landed to the head of Myers. It was more of the same throughout the six round scheduled fight. It was before the start of the sixth round that the ring doctor, Eddie Ayoub, stopped the contest due to excessive cuts inside a mouth. Samir stays unbeaten and is now 9-0, 9 KOs. Myers drops to 7 wins 11 losses and 1 draw.
Martinez gets by Musquez
It looked like it was going to be a short night for middleweight Anthony Martinez when he dropped Sacramento's David Musquez in the first round. Musquez didn't seem too badly hurt. He battled back and even scored a knockdown in the second round. Martinez got up and a real battle ensued. The Sacramento native repeatedly tried to land the right hand that dropped his opponent. Although Martinez was controlling the action for the most part, it was Musquez who wobbled Martinez several times. By the end of the scheduled four round middleweight contest it seemed that Musquez had done enough to squeeze out the win which would have been quite an upset. The judges had other ideas. The scores were 38-36 for Musquez and 37-37 (twice) a majority draw much to the displeasure of the audience who clearly felt that Musquez had won. Martinez is now 7-0-1, 5 KO’s. Musquez drops to 3-4-2, 3 knockouts.
Quintana defeats Raymundo
The always entertaining Amaris "Diamond Girl" Quintana of Chula Vista put on a good show in defeating San Bernardino's Blanca Raymundo in a female flyweight match up. Quintana outworked her opponent from beginning to end. Quintana got the unanimous decision and improved her record to three wins zero losses and two draws. Raymundo remains winless in two outings.
San Diego's Manuel Robles defeated David Morales of Los Angeles by four round decision in a super lightweight clash. Robles improved to 2 wins and zero losses. Morales lost his undefeated status and now has two wins and one loss.
The card was promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and broadcast on Telefutura’s “Solo Boxeo."
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV