By Jake Donovan
Adrian Hernandez scored a landslide decision win over fringe contender Dirceu Cabarca in a 12-round junior flyweight title fight Saturday evening Toluca, Mexico.
Scores were 120-108, 119-112 and 118-110 in favor of Hernandez, who made the first defense of his second tour as junior flyweight titlist.
Hernandez was in cruise control for most of the contest, though suffered a scare late in the fight. A headbutt left the defending titlist bloodied around his left eye, while Cabarca - as undeserving a title challenger as any in recent memory - was left to nurse a cut atop his scalp.
The closest either fighter came to a knockout was when Hernandez had Cabarca cornered in the third round, scoring with uppercuts and body shots. The sequence spilled over into the fourth, but became quickly realized that a long night was in store.
Cabarca enjoyed his best moments of the fight in the sixth, briefly hurting Hernandez but otherwise not posing much of a challenge. The visiting southpaw offered as much as he had, which in the end was enough to rack up a moral victory in going the full 12-round distance.
Hernandez picks up his fourth straight win as he advances to 26-2-1 (16KO). Cabarca heads back to Panama with his first loss in 15 months as he falls to 13-7 (5KO).
The bout marked Hernandez' first ring appearance since reclaiming his junior flyweight belt from prior conqueror Kompayak Porpramook.
Both fighters managed to win the belt at home in the two-fight series. Hernandez stopped Porpramook in six rounds last October in Mexico. The rematch came ten months after Porpramook won the belt with a 10th round knockout in a savage war in Thailand.
The mismatch aside, the alphabet title at stake made for the first major title fight of 2013.
Luis 'Vampiro' Arceo was awarded a highly questionable unanimous decision over Ricardo Dominguez in their 10-round lightweight co-feature.
All three judges had the bout scored 96-94 in favor of Arceo, whose right eye was swollen shut and appeared to have been outfought for much of the evening. The judges obviously felt otherwise, granting a decision that wasn't well-received by the crowd.
Arceo picks up his third straight win as he advances to 26-11-4 (17KO). Dominguez snaps a two-fight win streak as his record falls to 36-9-2 (22KO).
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: