By Francisco Salazar
StubHub Center, Carson, California - Rey Vargas (30-0, with 22 KOs) successfully defended his WBC junior featherweight title with a 12 round unanimous decision over Ronny Rios.
Vargas utilized his four-inch height advantage to outbox Rios early on, but Rios was able to close the distance between himself and Vargas. Rios (28-2, with 13 KOs) stunned Vargas with a left hook in round eight, but did very little after that as Vargas stayed on the outside, peppering Rios with jabs.
Scores were 118-110, 118-110, and 115-113 for Vargas.
Featherweight Joet Gonzalez improved to 18-0, with 9 KOs) with a fifth round knockout victory over Deivis Julio of Colombia. Julio (19-3, with 11 KOs) was game, but Gonzalez slowly broke him down with passing round. A right hand dropped Julio with about a minute left in round five. Julio attempted to fight back, but was stunned again by a Gonzalez right hand against the ropes. Referee Jack Reiss decided to step in and stop the bout at 2:57.
Junior featherweight Emilio Sanchez (15-0, with 10 KOs) stopped Danny Flores in the fifth round. After a competitive first four rounds of the fight, Sanchez stunned Flores (15-10-1, with 8 KOs) with a barrage of punches. Sanchez followed up with another series of blows, prompting referee Gerard White to stop the bout at 33 seconds.
Featherweight Tenochtitlan Nava remained unbeaten, winning a close four round unanimous decision over Angel Aguilar (8-14, with 1 KO). All three judges scored the bout 39-37 in favor of Nava, who goes to 7-0, with 1 KO.
Welterweight Alexis Rocha (9-0, with 6 KOs) knocked out Esau Herrera (19-10-1, with 10 KOs) at 2:59 of the opening round. A right hook from the southpaw Rocha dropped Herrera, who was counted out by referee Jack Reiss. Rocha is the younger brother of Ronny Rios, who challenges Rey Vargas for the WBC junior featherweight title later tonight.
In junior welterweight action, Genaro Gamez won a six round unanimous decision over Rafael Reyes (7-11, with 5 KOs). Games dropped Reyes in round two, but was deducted a point at the end of round four due to landing a low blow. Scores were 59-53, 59-53, and 58-54 for Gamez, who goes to 6-0, with 4 KOs.