Santillan Needs Only Two Rounds
To Keep His Title Over Barboza
By Barbara Pinnella
Photos: Marlene Marquez
On Friday night Thompson Boxing Promotions presented
Locked ‘N Loaded, once again at the Doubletree Hotel in
Ontario, CA. The main event of the evening saw
welterweights Giovani “El Gallo de Oro” Santillan (24-0,
14 KOs) went up against Alejandro “Bad Boy” Barboza
(11-2, 7 KOs), and Santillan was defending his WBO NABO
welterweight belt. This title fight was to go a
scheduled 10 rounds.
The first round saw Santillan trying to strike early and
establish dominance, and he did that. He roughed his
opponent up a little bit. In the second he landed more
leather on Barboza, who then came back with a fast and
accurate combination of his own. Giovani was not
bothered and continued with his game plan. That plan
must have included an awesome body shot, because that is
what put Barboza down and out at 2:33 of the second
round. Santillan is still the WBO NABO welterweight
In the co-main event, Saul Sanchez (8-0, 4 KOs) faced
off opposite Sam Rodriguez (5-3, 3 KOs) in a
bantamweight bout that was scheduled for six rounds. The
first round was a very strong one for Sanchez, as he
almost knocked Rodriguez down. He stayed on the attack
throughout the round.
The second round saw a lot of action from each man. They
were really going at it. Body shots were the order for
the third, and both men delivered some good ones. The
headhunting took over in the fourth, as these two were
putting on quite a show. In the fifth it looked as if
just maybe Saul would be able to put Sam away, but
Rodriguez refused to be stopped and fought back.
The sixth and final once again saw them exchanging
leather. Rodriguez landed some very nice little
combinations during these three minutes, only to get
completely beaten up, then come back and once again
refuse to go down. This was a very good contest, and we
went to the scorecards. The judges saw the fight 59-55
twice and 60-54, all for Sanchez. He was the more
skilled of the two to be sure, but Rodriguez gave a good
account of himself.
Next we saw Miguel Alcantara (5-0, 2 KOs) facing off
against Jose Fabian Naranjo (3-8-2, 1 KO) in a fight
scheduled to go four rounds in the super bantamweight
division. We saw an exciting opening round, with both
fighters landing some good shots and scoring points.
Alcantara started it off, but Naranjo had a couple of
big moments near the end of the round.
These two fought head to head all of round two. It was
as if it was the last round of a title fight. A lot of
action going on and again, each man had their moments.
They were both still throwing in the third, but their
arms looked quite a bit heavier and slower, and for good
reason. They had been pounding away non-stop at each
In the fourth and final round they went right back to
their respective punishments on each other. The fatigue
was gone. We went to the scorecards. The three men
scoring the bout saw it 40-37, 39-36 and 40-36, all for
George Acosta (5-0) faced Bryan Tovar, (0-2) in a bout
in the lightweight division. This fight was for a
scheduled four rounds. Tovar went down early in the
round, but there did not appear to be any damage done.
That was not the case in the second however, when Acosta
got Bryan on the ropes and just unloaded on him. The
fight was stopped at 1:23 of that second round.
Jonah Flores (4-0) went up against Nery Garcia (1-4) in
a fight scheduled for four rounds in the super
bantamweight division. Flores left no doubt right from
the get-go who was the faster fighter. He would land two
quick left hand jabs and then throw back with his right
just because he could.
Garcia woke up in the second and landed some shots of
his own, but Jonah still owned the show. Nery got a bit
hotter in the third round, but so did Flores. Still,
both were able to do some good body work as well as
headhunt. There were some really good exchanges in the
final three minutes, and we went to the scorecards. All
three saw the fight the same, 40-36 for Flores. This was
a great showing for the Henry Ramirez-trained Jonah.
To open up the night we saw super welterweights Louie
Lopez (2-0, 1 KO) and Jared Ejigu (0-3) square off in a
bout that was to go a scheduled four rounds. We did not
see a pretty first round, as Ejigu was quite a bit
taller than Lopez and kept holding and pulling Louie
down. He would also run a lot. Jared was a very awkward
As ugly a fight as this was so far, both men actually
landed some punches in the second. The best of those was
a big left hand from Lopez that staggered his opponent.
The third round was not a lot different. Ejigu continued
to run and hold. It was obvious that Lopez was the more
The fourth and final didn’t show us anything we had not
already seen, and we went to the scorecards. All three
of the judges saw the fight the same, 40-36, all for
Lopez. This was certainly no surprise.
Great job by Giovani to retain the title, as well as all
of the winners tonight. Every fighter did good work, and
this was another fun Thompson event.