Jose Ramirez Edges Jose Zepeda To Retain Title
Jose Ramirez was faced with the toughest test of his career.
Jose ďChonĒ Zepeda was slick, slippery, and would not give
in. But it was a late rally in the championship rounds that
pushed Ramirez (24-0, 16 KOs) to a majority decision victory
as he retained his WBC super lightweight title for the
second time in front of 14,034 screaming fans at the Save
The scores were 114-114, 115-113, and 116-112, as Ramirez
won the 12th round on all three judgesí scorecards to clinch
ďHe was a very a tough and smart southpaw. He came well
prepared," Ramirez said. "He kept a good range and distance.
That made it a tough, close fight, but I think I pulled it
off in the championship rounds. I landed the most effective
Said Zepeda: "Jose Ramirez is a great fighter, and his fans
really pushed him and gave him momentum."
As for what's next, Ramirez mentioned unification bouts or
perhaps a move up to welterweight. When it was all said and
done, the Central Valley folk hero sent his fans home happy.
Beltran KO's Okada
Itís a new weight, but the same Ray Beltran. The former
lightweight world champion overcame a tough battle from
Hiroki Okada to score a ninth-round knockout and win the
vacant WBC Continental Americas and WBO Intercontinental
140-pound belts. Beltran (36-8-1, 22 KOs) lost his WBO
lightweight world title to Jose Pedraza back in August, but
put himself in the thick of the 140-pound title picture with
his performance against the previously unbeaten Okada.
The action was fierce from the opening bell, with the two
combatants waging a second round for the ages. Beltran
knocked Okada (19-1, 13 KOs) down with a crisp left hook,
only for Okada to stun Beltran later in the round.
"I knocked him down in the second round, but he came back
and got me good, too," Beltran said. "We knew his plan was
to stay at distance and keep me at bay with the jab. Every
time I threw my left hook, he kept covering very well. I saw
an opening with the right hand and thatís why I started
throwing it, and little by little, I kept shortening the
distance until I connected with a big right hand and I
Beltran weathered the storm, pressed the action, and
eventually wore down Okada. A pair of knockdowns in the
ninth forced Okada's corner to stop the fight. At the time
of the stoppage, the judges' scores read: 78-74 Beltran and
In other action:
Gabriel Flores Jr. (12-0, 5 KOs) notched a six-round
unanimous decision over Alex Rynn Torres (6-3, 3 KOs) in a
spirited lightweight bout. The scores were as followed:
60-54 (2x) and 59-55.
ďIím getting better with each fight. I felt better than
ever," Flores said. "I get more and more experience with
each fight. I feel like Iím getting cleaner. Iím getting
sharper, and Iím only going to get better. Iím ready for
whoever Top Rank puts in front of me. This is what I do all
day, every day."
Carlos Castro (22-0, 9 KOs) won the vacant WBC Continental
Americas super bantamweight title with a dominant 10-round
unanimous decision (100-90, 99-91, 98-92) over former world
title challenger Genesis Servania (32-2, 15 KOs). Castro
used his superior boxing skills to befuddle Servania, who
was unable to cut off the ring.
Andy ďEl ďTiburonĒ Venes (22-0-1, 12 KOs) maintained his
status as one of the sportís top 130-pound contenders,
rolling through savvy veteran Dardan Zenunaj (14-6, 11 KOs)
via eight-round unanimous decision by identical scores of
"I felt great coming back after that long rest after
suffering the injury. Itís been a long time," Vences said.
"I looked sharp, but I knew this was going to be a tough
fight. This guy gave a great fight and went the distance
against Andrew Cancio, and Cancio just became a world
champion last night. I knew that against a guy like that I
was going to need to use all my skills, and I did. I
dominated the fight.Ē
Heavyweight prospect Guido "The Gladiator" Vianello"
improved to 2-0 with a first-round stoppage over Andrew
Satterfield, scoring a knockdown early in the round and
finishing it off with a vicious follow-up combination.
Vianello represented his native Italy at the 2016 Rio
"I felt more relaxed and composed than my first pro fight,"
Vianello said. "I am only going to get better."
In a major upset at 140 pounds, Cristian Coria (29-7-2, 13
KOs) scored a crushing third-round knockout over Joel Diaz
Jr. (24-2, 20 KOs). A left hook put Diaz down for good at
1:50 of the round.
Fresno native and super bantamweight prospect Isidro Ochoa
improved to 7-0 with a fifth-round TKO over Jesus Guzman
after Guzman's corner elected to stop the fight.
Saul "Neno" Rodriguez defeated Aelio Mesquita by fifth-round
knockout to move to 23-0-1.