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  Diego Pacheco Thrills Crowd With 9th Round KO

By Albert Castillo
Photos: William Trillo

 

From the YouTube Center in Inglewood, California, Eddie Hearns Matchroom Boxing, put together a six- fight card that did not disappoint. In the main event of the evening highly touted Diego Pacheco (20-0, 17 KOs) fought a tough, cagey opponent in Marcelo Coceres (32-6, 18 KOs). The veteran Coceres came to fight and landed some good shots.
 

In the 8th round Pacheco landed solid combinations that pushed Coceres into the corner. The bell rang and Coceres survived without further punishment. In the ninth round it was more of the same as Pachecos onslaught started with a right-left combination followed by an hellacious uppercut that dropped Coceres in the corner and he did not recover. Referee Ray Corona called a halt to he contest at 2:53 of the ninth round.

The undefeated Pacheco was crowned the WBC USA and WBO International Super Middleweight champ. In the post-fight interview Pacheco admitted that Coceres gave him a challenge, but it was what he needed at this time in his career. He threw awkward punches. He was tough. Im ready for the big fights in 2024. Indeed, he is and we look forward to seeing him in the future.
 

Super Bantamweight Erika Cruz Hernandez (17-2-1, 3 KOs) captured the WBA World Super Bantamweight Championship by defeating the defending Super Bantamweight Champion Mayerlin Rivas (17-5-3, 11 KOs) with a majority decision. Judges scored it 95-95, 98-92, and 97-93.
 

It was a difficult fight to score, and it appeared to be quite close. In the early going Rivas either moved away or clinched. Cruz had a tough time attempting to cut off the ring. By the fifth round Cruz was working hard to make the match a fight. Cruz continued to press and began to connect in the second half of the fight. Both women had a mouse under their eyes. The fight was very close however it was Cruz who was the busier fighter and escaped with victory and the title.
 

Fighting for the WBA Inter-Continental Bantamweight championship Jonathan Rodriguez (17-1, 7 KOs) pulled out all the stops to defeat Khalid Yafai (27-2, 15 KOs) by knocking him out at 2:17 of the first round. Within the first minute of the round Rodriguez unloaded a huge haymaking right hand that caught Yafai square on the jaw and dropped him for a count of ten.
 

Rodriguez then shortened up his right hands and caught Yafai again to put him on the canvas. After scrambling to get to his feet Yafai again caught a right hand on top of the head which caused him to stumble across the ring. Rodriguez charged across the ring to finish him and that is when referee Thomas Taylor stepped in to stop the fight. Afterward Rodriguez thanked God and said he had worked extremely hard to prepare for this fight. His hard work paid off.
 

Up and coming contender Marc Castro (11-0. 8 KOs) took advantage of every combination beating Gonzalo Fuenzalida (12-3, 3 KOs) to the punch on every exchange. In the fourth round Castro had Fuenzalida hurt but did not pursue.
 

In each round Castro connected with some strong right hands and then appeared to back off. Although Fuenzalida is a light hitter, only 3 knockouts, he had a chin of stone. Finally in the 7th round Castro unloaded a barrage of punches in which Fuenzalida could not defend. Referee Ray Corona stepped in and stopped the fight at 2:31 of the 7th round handing Castro his 11th win and 8th KO.

Lightweight Jalan Walker, (12-01, 10 KOs) remained unbeaten as he made short work of Jorge Villegas (14-2, 13 KOs) knocking him out at 2:55 of the second round.

In the opening bout of the evening Criztec Balzadua (3-0, 1 KO) knocked out Pedro Angel Cruz (3-4, 2 KOs) at .46 seconds of the fourth round.



 

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