ORANGE, Calif. (Sept. 28, 2013) – Light welterweight Mauricio “Maestro” Herrera composed a symphony of sorts with his dominant and stylish unraveling of Miguel Angel Huerta on Friday night from the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, Calif. The main event of the Thompson Boxing Promotions “Path to Glory” fight card showcased Herrera at his best. He picked apart Huerta with a steady jab and followed that up with consistent power punching to earn a unanimous decision (80-72, 79-73, 78-74) victory improving to 20-3, 7 KOs. Huerta drops to 27-11-1, 18 KOs.
The 8-round main event delivered thrills and showed why many believe Herrera should be in line for a title shot sometime in the near future. He showcased a tremendous amount of talent and skill, particularly in the fourth and seventh rounds when he nailed Huerta with numerous combinations to the head and body.
“I felt like I controlled the fight from start to finish,” Herrera said, who is promoted by Thompson Boxing Promotions. “He kept walking into my jab and I kept unloading on him. He’s a tough guy with a solid chin. I thought he would be a little rusty after his layoff, but he came out looking good.”
In the co-main event, light welterweight Giovanni Santillan overpowered Angel Martinez to cruise to a fourth round KO victory. Santillan, out of San Diego, remains unbeaten and improved his record to 10-0, 6 KOs, while Martinez lands at 13-5-1, 9 KOs. The southpaw used an array of power punches to continually stun the smaller Martinez. On two separate occasions in the fourth round, he smashed him with right hooks that resulted in two knockdowns. The referee stopped the fight at the 1:16 mark of the fourth round.
The fight got ugly for Martinez in the first round, when Santillan connected with a clean right hook to score the first knockdown. Santillan, a large light welterweight, is a bear of a fighter that packs power in both mitts.
“I try to make life miserable for my opponents,” said the 21-year-old Santillan, who like Herrera, is also promoted by Thompson Boxing. “I hurt Martinez in the first round with that right hook and from that point on, I started to pile it on. His punches didn’t affect me at all. I just brushed them off and tried to punch through him and I did.”
Lightweight Joaquin Chavez used excellent footwork and timely combinations to defeat Anthony Arellano of San Diego by majority decision (58-56, 57-57, 58-56). Chavez, fighting out of Commerce, Calif., improves to 6-10-2, 2 KOs, while Arellano falls to 6-2-1, 2 KOs.
Super bantamweight Francisco Jose Camacho of Mexico improved to 2-3, 1 KO by earning a unanimous decision victory over previously unbeaten Jorge Ruiz (3-1, 1 KO) of San Diego.
Camacho won convincingly with scores 40-37, 39-37, 40-36. Camacho manage to develop a rhythm early, while Ruiz never quite found his comfort zone.
A pair of welterweights making their pro debuts delivered an entertaining brawl for the fans in attendance. Neeco Macias of Tehachapi, Calif. and Francisco Ramirez of Riverside, Calif. slugged it out in the middle of the ring for most of the four-round fight. Both fighters are a bit raw offensively, but that did not stop them from throwing a staggering amount of punches. In the end, Macias landed the majority of the clean punches and it showed in the judges scoring. He wins his first professional fight by unanimous decision with 40-36 across all three scorecards. Macias, known also as “The Rooster,” is a fighter to keep an eye on, not only because of his entertaining fighting style, but also for his engaging and eye popping personality. He is constantly smiling, inside and outside of the ring, and never wastes an opportunity to perform a rooster call.
The second fight of the night pitted talented lightweights Cesar Villarraga of Colombia and Sopaun Rin of Chino, Calif., both of whom made their pro debut. Villarraga scored his first professional victory with a spectacular fourth round knockout. Villarraga landed a crushing left hook to the temple nine seconds in, which translated to a lights out moment for the young Rin. Villarraga scored an early knockdown in the second round, while Rin connected with a straight right in the first that knocked down the former Colombian Olympian.
The fight, however, belonged to Villarraga. He consistently connected with left hooks and looked stronger as the fight wore on. Villarraga is one of five recent signees inked by Thompson Boxing Promotions in the last several months.
Opening the show were light welterweights Jonathan Garcia of Watsonville, Calif. and Puerto Rican Christopher Rivera. Garcia stalked Rivera for most of the first round and landed several quality hits. Both fighters, however, did not force the tempo. The pace quickened in the second with Garcia striking fast. He landed a left hook to the head that put Rivera flat on his back. The second round knockout occurred at the :37 mark. Garcia remains undefeated with a record of 12-0, 10 KOs, while Rivera drops to 5-14-1, 4 KOs.
“Path to Glory” was presented by Thompson Boxing Promotions and sponsored by Lucas Oil, in association with Time Warner Cable Deportes.