By Francisco Salazar
CARSON, Calif.--Featherweight Julian Ramirez won a 10 round unanimous decision over Hugo Partida. Ramirez and Partida traded terrific exchanges during the first two rounds, with the southpaw Ramirez (15-0, 8 KOs) landing the more effective punches. The pace slowed down going into the middle rounds, but Ramirez was still in control of the action. Partida (20-6-2, 15 KOs) would launch an occasional offensive, but Ramirez kept his composure by outboxing him on the inside. All three judges scored the bout in favor of Ramirez, 100-90, 100-90, and 99-91.
Junior lightweight Nick Arce (5-0, 5 KOs) knocked out Juan Hernandez (3-1) with a left hook to the body at 29 seconds of the fourth round.
Lightweight contender Mercito Gesta won a hard-fought 10 round unanimous decision over late-sub Miguel Angel Mendoza. After an even first round, Mendoza (21-7-2, 21 KOs) scored a knockdown in the second round, although it looked more like Gesta lost his balance while Mendoza stepped on his foot. Mendoza did his best to walk the southpaw Gesta down throughout the bout, but his punch output decreased as the bout progressed into the later rounds. Gesta (29-1-2, 16 KOs) was able to effectively counter to the head. As the bout progressed, landing more uppercuts to the head of Mendoza. All three judges scored the bout in favor of Gesta, 97-92, 97-92, and 96-93.
Junior welterweight Marcelino Lopez was successful in his United States debut, knocking out David Rodela in the third round. Both fighters had their moments in the opening round, but Lopez (32-1-1, 17 KOs) dropped Rodela with a left hook in the second round. Rodela was able to rally later in the round, but was dropped with a left uppercut by Lopez in round three. Rodela (17-12-4, 7 KOs) struggled to get up and was counted out by referee Eddie Hernandez at 1:04.
Light heavyweight D'Mitrius Ballard won a six round unanimous decision over Juan Carlos Rojas. Ballard (10-0, 7 KOs) was in control throughout the entire fight. Rojas (8-13-1, 7 KOs) was deducted a point in the second round due to a low blow. All three judges scored the bout in favor of Ballard, 60-53, 59-44, and 58-55.
In the opening bout of the Top Rank/ Golden Boy Promotions card, junior lightweight Alejandro Ochoa won a hard-fought six round majority decision over Kevin Rivers. Ochoa (7-10-2, 1 KO), who mostly fights on club shows in Southern California, dropped Rivers with a right hand in the first round and again in the second round. Sensing he was down, Rivers (12-1, 9 KOs) came on in the second half of the fight. Ochoa held his ground, fighting back and effectively countering Rivers to the head. One judge scored the bout 56-56, while the other two judges scored the bout 59-53 for Ochoa.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene.com since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper, RingTV, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected]ahoo.com or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing