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  Toney Plods To Victory Over Reed At San Manuel

By Barbara Pinnella
Photos: William Trillo


San Manuel Indian Casino in San Bernardino, California was the host of the Empire Sports and Entertainment event this past Thursday night. The main event of the evening was James “Lights Out” Toney (72-6-3, 44 KO’s) going up against Damon “Dangerous” Reed (45-14-0, 32 KO’s). This fight was for the IBA Heavyweight title. The 42-year-old Toney gave away only three years to his opponent – two veterans with 140 fights between them going in a scheduled 10 round fight.

Round one found the men feeling each other out. At the same time it appeared that Toney was just playing with Reed throughout the first round. James came out with a bit more intensity for round two. Just looking at his face is intimidating, then have him throw the punches at his opponent and it escalates.

In round three Toney was more active yet, moving in, scoring one or two hard body shots, then moving back out again. He was a very illusive target for Reed to find. James kept up the pressure in the fourth round. He was in total control, landing his punches whenever he chose. He was so comfortable that on his way to his corner after the round he did a bit of dancing.

It was all Toney once again in the fifth, until Damon came on in the last 10 seconds. Other than that, Toney continued to do the chasing and landing the punches. His right hand body shots were brutal.

Reed made some contact in the sixth, but for the most part James would flick away anything sent his way as if he would a gnat. In the seventh, Toney changed it up a bit – he hit his opponent with a few solid left hands. At the end of the round we saw Damon get in some solid punches on James. Still, all Toney here so far.

Not too much to say after the eighth. Even though Reed was trying, James was still in control. Ninth, same stuff, different round. Round 10…if Toney came into the fight a bit heavy, which he did, he lost weight tonight. He spent the entire time chasing his opponent around the ring. I was surprised at how well he was able to do that after 30 minutes.

A desperation move by Damon in the tenth, as he really tried to go for the kill, but there was no way that was going to happen. All the judges saw the fight the same; 100-90, 100-90, and 100-90, all for Toney, who was easily able to keep his IBA Heavyweight belt.

There were four other fights on the card. Jorge “The Truth” Teron (25-2-1, 17 KO’s) went up against Jose Soto Karass (21-16-1, 19 KO’s) in a Lightweight fight scheduled for six rounds.

The first round was a bit unremarkable, but Teron was showing more early on than was Karass. In the second Teron scored with a few good right hands to control the fight.

The fight was waved off before the start of the third round, when a cut over the eye of Soto Karass made it impossible for him to fight. Since Jose could not see out of the eye, Teron got the TKO victory.

A fight scheduled for four rounds was a Light Welterweight fight that saw Edther Arvizu (1-1, 1 KO) going up against Shawn Wate (1-5). Arvizu had the better punches in the first round, with Wate staying much more on the defensive. In the second both men ended up on the canvas together amid the boos of the crowd.

More boos from the fans as the men hit the ground together once again in the third. Quite a sloppy fight that saw Arvizu scoring most often, but sad to say that was not hard to do. The men fell down together again in the fourth round, but this time Wate stayed there. The doctor had to go in the ring to check him out, which resulted in the fight being waved off.

The most interesting thing about this fight was the ending – a DQ against Arvizu (who had obviously won the fight), for continuing to throw Wate to the ground, giving Wate his first victory. An interesting finish to a lackluster fight. Also must note here that Shawn could not make it out under his own power, and after helping him from the ring he had to be carted out of the building.

A Junior Welterweight bout that was scheduled for four rounds was between Angel Estrada (5-1 2 KO’s) and Alfredo Rivera (1-7). On paper this fight looked to be quite a mismatch – an undefeated fighter against one who has not won a professional fight. But nobody pointed that out to Rivera on this night. In the first round Rivera came out swinging. More than that, he was connecting. While many punches missed by both fighters, Alfredo had the most hits. Estrada was cut by his right eye from a head butt.

Estrada fought back in the second, but Rivera was still trying to win. While quite wild, he continued to connect with his punches on several occasions. Round three was more of the same. Both men got hit with hard shots, and both men had obvious misses. An interesting fight here.

These men left nothing in the ring. Round four saw some tired fighters, but they continued to slug it out. Alfredo really came to win tonight and tried his heart out. I was exhausted after watching the four rounds! At the end of the slugfest the judges saw it 38-38, 39-37, 39-37, the majority decision went to Rivera. Win number one for him, and deservedly so! What an exciting fight.

Michael Ruiz, Jr. (7-0-1, 3 KO’s) faced off against Diego Mojac (2-4-1) in a Bantamweight contest in another scheduled four rounder. A good first round from both fighters, with Ruiz pressing the action, but Mojac answering back. Ruiz scored more in the second, but Diego was nothing if not persistent.

In the third Mojac was getting hit with lefts and rights, but he also continued to make his presence known. He was able to pepper Ruiz, probably a lot more than Michael expected. The fourth round was more of the same – hard shots given by Ruiz, but a lot of comeback try on the part of Mojac. In the end it was a unanimous decision; 40-36, 39-37, 40-36, all for Ruiz, Jr. But Mojac had nothing to be ashamed of, he definitely made his mark tonight.

In the first fight of the night, Enrique Lobatos (2-2-1) faced off against Granson Clark, who was making his professional debut. This was a Heavyweight fight scheduled for four rounds. A pretty active first round for these heavyweights, which saw both men getting in some good shots. In the second round is looked as if Clark was going to have the upper hand when suddenly a little series of punches by Lobatos sent Ganson to a knee from which he never recovered, and the fight was waved off after the 10 count at :55 seconds of round number two, handing Clark his first pro loss.

It turned out to be an entertaining evening, once you got past the metal detectors and all the security guards. Some surprisingly good fights – in all an enjoyable night.

Be safe and God Bless,
Viva La Raza,


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