Oscar Duarte extended his knockout streak with his most impressive win to date.

A right hand by the streaking Mexican contender froze Chicago’s Alex Martin in place before falling to the canvas for the first of two knockdowns on the night. An ensuing volley floored Martin seconds later, which prompted referee Jerry Cantu to stop the contest at 1:14 of round eight in their lightweight battle Saturday evening on DAZN from the Walter Pyramid on the campus of California State University-Long Beach.

The fight took place at a 136-pound catchweight, which saw Martin move further down the scale after previously campaigning at welterweight. Duarte—a heavy-handed 27-year-old from Parral, Chihuahua, Mexico—was determined to become the first to stop the crafty veteran and delivered in a big way.

Martin employed lateral movement early in the fight, though Duarte moderately enjoyed success in cutting off the ring. Time was called midway through the round, as an errant left hand by Martin landed well south of the border. Duarte came back later in the round with a left hook over the top, to which Martin immediately responded with a counter right hand to the chin.

Duarte walked forward and fought in counterpunching mode early in round two. A right hand landed for the streaking Mexican knockout artist after Martin landed a left to the body. Duarte took the lead as the round progressed, although Martin was able to slip most of the incoming and respond with lefts. Duarte landed a pair of right hands that had Martin briefly stunned inside the final ten seconds of the round.

Martin was forced on the defensive early in round three as Duarte went on the attack. Both fighters landed hooks but it was Duarte who kept coming forward. Martin was able to create space in the final minute and was effective with his stick-and-move approach. Duarte once again closed the gap and landed a right hand just before the bell.

Duarte continued to land the more telling blows as he came forward in a straight line in round four. Martin stood directly in the pocket and connected with a left hand downstairs and a right hook to Duarte’s chin. Duarte cornered Martin late in the round, though it was a right hand just after the bell which drew the ire of the Chicagoland lightweight who raised the issue with referee Jerry Cantu.

The corner of Duarte went to work with reddening under his right eye in between rounds. They had more work to perform after the Mexican slugger suffered a cut over his right eye, which was ruled as the cause of a punch. Martin took advantage of the moment, snapping back the head of Duarte with a right uppercut and left hand upstairs. Duarte targeted the body though most of the incoming was blocked by Martin.

Duarte drew a rise out of the pro-Mexican crowd with a swarm of power shots in the first minute of round six. Martin weathered the early storm but his chin was additionally tested after Duarte landed an overhand left out of a southpaw stance. Duarte momentarily stopped punching, to which Martin responded strictly with power shots.

Martin returned to the jab in round seven, which helped set up left hands that occasionally landed but with minimal impact. Duarte drove Martin to the ropes with a left hook after two right hands connected on the inside.

The frightening power of Duarte produced a sudden ending in round eight. Martin was constantly on the move but ran out of ring space. Duarte crashed home a right hand that left Martin limp before hitting the deck. Martin somehow beat the count but was sent to the canvas shortly thereafter. Cantu raced in to stop the bout without issuing a second count.

Martin suffered his first stoppage defeat as he fell to 18-5 (6KOs).

Duarte improved to 25-1-1 (20KOs) with the win, his tenth in a row. His entire current win streak has come inside the distance since he suffered his lone career defeat in a February 2019 split decision defeat to countryman Adrian Estrella.

Former IBF junior lightweight titlist Joseph Diaz Jr. (32-3-1, 15KOs) faces San Diego-bred Filipino southpaw Mercito Gesta (33-3-3, 17KOs) in a makeshift main event.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox