By Francisco Salazar
It had been almost five years since Miguel Angel Huerta had fought for a paycheck. One would assume Huerta would be rusty having not fought in so long.
Mauricio Herrera hadn't fought in almost five months. Yet he admitted he was not as effective as he would've liked to have been.
"I felt rusty myself."
Rusty or not, Herrera was able to win a workmanlike eight round unanimous decision over Huerta at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, CA on Friday night.
The bout headlined a seven-bout "Path to Glory" card, presented by Thompson Boxing.
Herrera was coming off a 10 round unanimous decision over Ji-Hoon Kim on May 2nd. Huerta had not fought sine being stopped in the fourth round by Mike Alvarado in December of 2008.
Herrera set the tone early in the fight by beating Huerta to the punch. Herrera was able to land three or four-punch combinations before Huerta was able to counter. As if Huerta was not able to make an adjustment to that, he had to deal with being repeatedly beat with lead right hands to the wad by Herrera.
Huerta was able to find success in landing left hooks to the body of Herrera. Whenever Huerta pressed aggressively, Herrera would greet him with a left counter left hook on top of those right hands.
Huerta increased his punch output in the final two rounds. He did not cleanly land punches as a majority of the punches landed on the arms of Herrera.
All three judges scored the bout in favor of Herrera, 78-74, 79-73, and 80-72. Boxingscene.com scored the bout 78-74 for Herrera.
"It didn't look like he was rusty at times," said Herrera after the fight. "I felt like I could've done better as I felt a little rusty. I still did what I had to do to win."
Herrera, from Riverside, CA, improves to 20-3, 7 KOs. Huerta, from Garden Grove, CA by way of Mexico City, DF, Mexico, drops to 27-11-1, 18 KOs.
Giovanni Santillan dropped Angel Martinez a total of three times en route to a fourth round technical knockout in a scheduled eight round welterweight bout. The southpaw Santillan (10-0, 6 KOs) dropped Martinez with a counter right hook to the head in the first round. Martinez (13-5-1, 9 KOs) got up and tried to fight back, but would get hit often as he threw very wide punches. Even though Martinez would land an occasional punch, his offense did not offset that of Santillan. In the fourth round, Santillan dropped Martinez with a barrage of punches. After getting up, Martinez went down a second time in the round, courtesy of a left hand to the head. After getting up, Martinez was getting knocked around the ring by Santillan, prompting his corner to throw in the towel. Referee David Denkin waved the fight over at 1:16.
Super lightweight Joaquin Chavez played spoiler again, beating Anthony Arellano (6-2-1, 2 KOs) by majority decision over six rounds. The shorter Chavez (6-10-2, 2 KOs) was able to land shorter and more effective punches, beating Arellano to the punch on the inside. Arellano's best round was in the third, when he was able to catch Chavez on the inside. Undaunted, Chavez was able to keep Arellano off-balanced by giving him different looks and by turning southpaw at times during the second half of the fight. Sensing he was down, Arellano pressed the action in the last round, doing his best work pinning Chavez against the ropes. It was too little too late as Chavez won on two of the judges' scorecards (58-56), while the third judge scored the bout 57-57. Boxingscene.com scored the bout 58-56 for Chavez.
In a minor upset, super bantamweight Francisco Camacho (2-3, 1 KO) won a one-sided four round unanimous decision over previously-unbeaten Jorge Ruiz. Camacho fought effectively from the outside, landing counter right crosses at will to Ruiz's head. Ruiz (3-1, 1 KO) would try to get on the inside, but would get hit often anytime he would throw punches. Camacho stunned Ruiz with a counter right hand to the head in the third, but was unable to land another decisive blow. Camacho slowed down in the fourth, but still won the round. All three judges scored the bout in favor of Camacho, 40-36, 40-36, and 39-37.
In a bout between welterweights making their professional debuts, Neeco Macias won a one-sided four round unanimous decision over Francisco Ramirez. It was all offense and no defense between both fighters, as they both traded flurries in the opening round. Macias pressed forward, throwing wild hooks and crosses. Although he was slipping a lot of the punches, Ramirez slowed down considerably in the second half of the fight. Both fighters looked tired in the final round, Macias threw and landed more punches. All three judges, including Boxingscene.com, score the bout 40-36 in favor of Macias.
In a hard-fought bout between junior lightweights making their professional debuts, Cesar Villarraga survived a first round knockdown to stop Sopaun Rin in the fourth and final round. Rin dropped Villarraga in the first round with a counter right hand to the head. Villarraga returned the favor to Rin, dropping him with a counter right to the head. That knockdown seemed to shift momentum in Villarraga's favor as he landed the sharper and more effect punches. Rin took a lot of punishment in the third round, prompting a ringside physician to check on him after the round. Villarraga ended matters in the fourth, dropping Rin with a counter left hook to the head. Referee David Denkin did not bother to count, waving the fight over at :09.
Welterweight Jonathan Garcia (12-0, 10 KOs) knocked Christopher Rivera out in the second round of a scheduled six round bout. It was a tentative opening round until both fighters began to open up in the final minute. Both fighters tried to land counter lead and hooks or crosses. It was Garcia who was able to land first and effectively, dropping Rivera (5-14-1, 4 KOs) with a counter right hand to the head. Referee Thomas Taylor counted Rivera out at 37 seconds.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene.com since last September andvhas covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. He also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) newspaper and Knockout Nation. He could be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter at FSalazarBoxing Tags: Mauricio Herrera