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  Karass Cooks Rooster

By Albert Castillo
Photos: William Trillo


In the main event of the evening from Golden Boy Promotions at Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, California Neeco “Rooster” Macias (17-1, 10 KO’s) laid an egg in his match against Jesus “El Renuente” Soto Karass (29-13-4 18 KO’s).

The fight was one for the record books as 3,350 punches were thrown with over a 1,000 landed. Soto Karass actually outpunched the corvine profiled Rooster by more than 200 punches.

The fight was an unbelievable display of guts and grit. The two pugilists literally fought in an area the size of a phone booth the entire fight raining non-stop punches on each other. Many of the Rooster’s punches were arm punches while the wily veteran Karass used his legs and body to throw much harder shots.

The Rooster was cut from a head butt early in the fight but the boy smiled and just kept on fighting. Soto-Karass went on to win a split decision. This was a great swan song for Karass who had previously stated that this would be his last fight and a great way to head into retirement. However, one never knows with a fighter. They always think they have one more fight left in them. We will see if this is true of Karass.

One judge had the fight even at 95-95 while the other two had the fight for Soto Karass 97-93 and 97-93. "I feel happy. I fought against a great warrior," said Jesus Soto Karass. "I always say that whether it's a win, a loss or a draw, the fans always win when they see one of my fights. I will speak with my team to see if this will be my last bout."

"I want to thank God for giving me the opportunity to be in the ring with this great warrior," said Neeco Macias. "I want to thank all of the fans for coming out tonight. We do this for you!"

Emilio Sanchez (17-1, 11 KO’s) vs. Enrique Bernache (24-12, 12 KO’s) was a featherweight slugfest of the highest magnitude. From the outset both fighters let their hands go grunting on every punch seeking the knockout.

Although neither fighter was staggered both of their faces showed much wear and tear. Sanchez had a huge shiner under his right eye and a cut on the bridge of the nose. Bernache was battered into crimson red and also had a cut on the bridge of his nose.

In the tenth round an accidental head-butt caused a cut over the left eye of Bernache which required referee Thomas Taylor to call an end to the contest. Scorecards gave a technical unanimous decision win to the Pacoima native, Emilio Sanchez (17-1, 11 KO’s) over Mexico’s Enrique Bernache (24-12, 12 KO’s). Judges scores were 100-91, 99-92, and 97-94.

"It was tough fight and I could have done better," said Emilio Sanchez. "When he came at me at the beginning of the fight, I decided to keep my composure and stick to the game plan.

Paramount, California’s Manny Robles III (17-0, 8 KO’s) maintained his NABF Featherweight Title by outpointing Mexican pugilist Jose Santos Gonzalez (23-8, 13 KO’s) in a split decision squeaker.

Robles got off to a very slow start, as Gonzalez was the aggressor. Robles picked it up a bit in the 4th and 5th rounds but it was the 6th round when Robles caught Gonzalez with a chopping right hand that almost dropped him. Robles displayed a unique and distinct style of using a peek-a-boo defense and waiting patiently until he could connect with right hands.

Unfortunately Robles did not let his hands go as he has done in previous fights. Gonzalez pressed the entire fight giving him the edge on one judge’s scorecard. Robles did catch many blows on his gloves but it was the solid if few quality right hands that he landed on the jaw of Gonzalez that garnered him the win. One judge had it 96-94 for Gonzalez while the other two had it 96-94 and 97-93 for Robles.

"I could have done better tonight," said Manny Robles III. "He was very awkward and hard to hit. I don't agree with the decision. I felt I won by unanimous decision, but I'm happy we got the win."

Hot prospect Aaron “Silencer” McKenna (6-0, 5 KO’s) of Monaghan, Ireland destroyed Mexican Abel Reyes (4-2, 4 KO’s) knocking him out at 2:27 of the second round. McKenna set up Reyes with a stiff jab before landing a left hook to the body that sent Reyes to the canvas.

Reyes was able to make the ten count. However, seconds later McKenna landed an even more devastating left hook to the mid section of Reyes that put him down and out for good. McKenna is a top young fighter with a bright future. He picks up his sixth win and fourth knockout.

"I took my time in there because I knew this was a six-round fight," said Aaron McKenna. "I've been working on my body shots. I got him clean and dropped him to get the win."

Maryland Super Middleweight, D’Metrius Ballard (19-0, 12 KO’s) battled Mexico’s Alan Campa (17-4, 11 KO’s) winning a unanimous decision in this competitive eight rounder. Through the first four rounds both fighters connected with quick combinations and crisp body shots.

By the fifth round Ballard stepped up his game with powerful blows from both hands. It was obvious that Campa was game but by the 5th round he began to gas out and his power diminished. Ballard dominated rounds 5 through 7 while Campa seemed content to survive. In the eighth round both fighters came out of their corners enthusiastically with a series of combinations but Ballard proved to be the stronger of the two. All judges provided Ballard with a unanimous decision win with scores of 80-72, 79-73, and 78-74.

"This was my first fight in 15 months," said D'Mitrius Ballard. "I was off due to some outside issues, but I'm back. I was shaking off some ring rust, and after a layoff like that, I want to come back as soon as possible.

Jordan White (6-1, 5 KO’s) out of Washington DC, made short work of Tijuana, Mexico’s Cristian Renteria (7-7, 6 KO’s) by stopping him at the end of the first round of a four round scheduled fight. White had too much speed and quickness for the outclassed Renteria.

White dropped Renteria with a left hook to the body as the bell sounded ending round one. Referee Thomas Taylor counted him out as Renteria peered up at him on all fours. White earns his fifth knockout and sixth win.

"I felt like a dog. I felt great," said Jordan White. "I loved every aspect of this event. I like the body shots, but I can do a little bit of everything. I'm looking forward to coming back."

In the opening bout of the evening from Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, California, Uzbekistan cruiserweight Sanjar Tursunuv (1-0, 1KO) in his pro debut used this sparring session to put away an out of shape Miguel Cubos (11-20, 8KO’s).

Referee Thomas Taylor appropriately stopped this bout at 1:26 of the second round. Cubos was a proverbial punching bag for Tursunov. Tursunov fought the two rounds with his hands down sticking Cubos with gut wrenching blows to the body. Tursunov exits the ring with his first professional win by knockout.

"I'm very happy with my performance," said Sanjar Tursunov. "Thank you to Golden Boy Promotions for this amazing opportunity."


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