Angel Fierro rose from the canvas twice en route to a stunning comeback knockout win in the sixth round against former world champion Alberto Machado as the latest chapter of the iconic Puerto Rico vs. Mexico ring rivalry was written in the Ring City USA main event, live on NBC Sports Network from Albergue Olimpico (Olympic Center) in Salinas, Puerto Rico.

Tijuana’s Fierro (18-1-1, 14 KOs) handed Machado (22-3, 18 KOs) of Rio Piedras his first professional loss in Puerto Rico, following a hot start from the former junior lightweight world champion. Machado, 30, scored a knockdown in each of the first two rounds with well-placed right-hand counter punches.

Fierro displayed a durable chin and beat the count easily both times, signaling that he was not hurt by the crunching power punches. Fierro was down 48-45 on all three judges’ scorecards at the time of the stoppage.

“I’m happy, I faced a top-notch fighter tonight in Alberto Machado,” said Fierro, who was a three-to-one underdog. “He is world class and dropped me twice. But I am ecstatic that I was able to come back and beat a fighter of his caliber.”

The 22-year-old lightweight turned the fight around in the fourth round as he dedicated himself to a vicious body attack against Machado.

The body work paid dividends as he found openings throughout the fifth and sixth round, ultimately leading to a vicious left hand that sent the former titlist to the canvas for the first and only time in the fight. Fierro credited finding his second wind to his two-year-old daughter back in Mexico.

“He dropped me twice in the beginning of the fight,” added Fierro. “When I got back to my corner, I told them, ‘remind me of my daughter.’ Because with this fight I can change her life and that’s exactly what they did after the third round. They motivated me and that’s exactly what I did.”

Prior to the fight, Fierro told the Ring City USA broadcast team, “the best judge is a knockout when you’re fighting in someone else’s hometown.”

The Mexican warrior, who replaced undefeated prospect Hector Tanajara on one week’s notice, delivered on his promise to take matters into his own hands.

“We found a lot of gaps in Machado’s game in the sixth round,” stated Fierro. “I took advantage of them and I turned it around. I told you in the interview (before the fight), I didn’t come here to be a tourist in Puerto Rico. I came here to win.”