Alberto Rossel still has to prove he can win on the road, especially if he wants to take a swing at guys like Kazuto Ioka and Roman Gonzalez.
For now, he's content with winning at home. It was more than enough to get the job done on this particular Saturday evening, topping former title challenger Walter Tello over 12 rounds in Callao, Peru.
Scores were 120-111, 118-114 and 118-113 in favor of Rossel, now one of three fighters to lay claim to status as a WBA 108 lb titlist.
Rossel was in control for most of the evening, though was forced to take a break late in the fight after getting caught with a very low blow. Tello was nearly knocked out in the later rounds, but the visiting Panamanian braved the storm and offered a respectable account of himself, even in falling short in the end.
Scoring in the end went the right way, though the number of even rounds suggested the judges weren't keen on differentiating in several rounds deemed close in their eyes.
Rossell picks up his sixth straight win - all coming at home - as he improves to 30-8 (13KO). The belt he acquired now puts him in line for either a shot at Roman 'Chocolatito' Gonzalez or a "unification" match with Kazuto Ioka to determine the full version champ should Gonzalez decide to vacate and move up in weight.
Tello falls to 18-7 (7KO) in his third bid at alphabet hardware of sorts. The fringe contender fell way short in an interim title fight with Manuel Vargas four years ago, then suffered a knockout loss to Giovani Segura one year later.
Carlos Zambrano enjoyed an easy night's work against aged Brazilian journeyman Edison Rios in their eight-round featherweight bout. Scores were 80-71 (three times) for Zambrano (19-0, 9KO), who scored a fifth round knockdown of Rios (9-15, 6KO), but seemed more interested in going rounds than heading home early.
The best fight of the undercard also featured the evening's most unpopular decision as Juan Zegarra was given the nod in a six-round war with Miguel Bustinza.
Both fighters had their say in a rough and tumble affair, but all three judges sided with Zegarra (12-0, 8KO) in the end. The crowd voiced its displeasure, believing that local favorite Bustinza (3-1, 0KO) won the fight with his aggression and ability to discourage his more seasoned opponent.
Unbeaten flyweight Rocio Gaspar (5-0, 1KO) scored a unanimous decision over Jhosep Visciano (0-2). Scores were 40-36 on all three cards in a pointless rematch to their four-round affair last December. Visciano has lost all eight rounds fought in her pro career, all coming against Gaspar.
Super bantamweight prospect Linda Laura "Tripe L" Lecca (5-1-1, 1KO) pitched a four-round shutout against hapless Valeria Mejia (0-3) in their televised swing bout. Scores were 40-35 across the board in favor of Lecca, fighting for just the second time since her tour on a Mexican boxing reality TV show nearly two years ago.
In the evening's chief support, local flyweight prospect Ricardo Astuvilca (7-0, 1KO) remained perfect with a near shutout of Ecuadorian southpaw Jorge Saquinaga (6-4-1, 3KO). Scores were 60-54 (twice) and 59-55 for Astulvica, who impressed in his first fight against an opponent with a winning record.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox