By Keith Idec
NEW YORK – Ronny Rios didn’t get the knockout he sought Saturday night, but still successfully bounced back from his loss in a world title fight three months ago.
Rios was busier and more accurate than Colombian southpaw Deivis Julio for much of their non-televised, 10-round featherweight fight on the Miguel Cotto-Sadam Ali undercard at Madison Square Garden. All three judges scored their largely uneventful fight for Rios (29-2, 13 KOs), of Santa Ana, California.
Tom Carusone credited Rios with winning all 10 rounds (100-90). The two other judges – Ron McNair (97-93) and Larry Hazzard Jr. (99-91) – had it closer, yet still a wide win for Rios. Colombia’s Julio (19-4, 11 KOs, 1 NC) dropped to 1-3 (1 NC) in his past five fights.
Rios won in his first fight since suffering a unanimous-decision defeat to Rey Vargas in their 12-round, WBC super bantamweight title fight August 26 in Carson, California. Mexico’s Vargas was scheduled to make another defense of his 122-pound championship against Colombia’s Oscar Negrete later Saturday night in the opener of HBO’s doubleheader.
Julio got knocked out in the fifth round by Los Angeles’ Joet Gonzalez (17-0, 9 KOs) on that same August 26 undercard at StubHub Center.
About the most interesting moment in the Rios-Julio fight came in the seventh round. That’s when Rios hit Julio low, which caused Julio to take a long break with 1:36 to go in the round.
Rios, seemingly aggravated because Julio took so long to recover, aggressively went after him in the center of the ring as soon as the action resumed.
In the first fight Saturday night, welterweight Zachary Ochoa easily out-boxed Erick Martinez in a six-round welterweight fight.
Brooklyn’s Ochoa (18-2, 7 KOs) won by the same margin on all three scorecards (60-54), but couldn’t hurt Martinez, who has lost by knockout or technical knockout five times. Mexico’s Martinez (14-11-1, 8 KOs) lost for the fifth time in his past six fights.
Ochoa won his second straight fight since Canada’s Yves Ulysse Jr. (14-1, 9 KOs) stopped him after seven rounds March 11 in Verona, New York.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.