Gonzalez edges Rivera for NABO title

By Miguel Maravilla at ringside

Featherweight Joet Gonzalez (19-0, 11 KOs) of Glendora, California scored a ten round split decision over Rafael ‘Big Bang’ Rivera (25-1-2, 16 KOs) of Tijuana, Mexico on Friday night at The Novo by Microsoft at L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles in the Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN main event for the vacant NABO 126-pound title.

Feeling each other out in the opening round Rivera showed the aggression first as he backed and pinned Gonzalez against the ropes unloading shots to the body. Rivera continued to attack to the body in the second but Gonzalez landed a straight right hand that momentarily stopped Rivera’s momentum. The jab found its mark for Gonzalez once again in the third keeping Rivera at a distance as he continued to display the aggression. Rivera continued to stay on top of Gonzalez in round four working inside as the two traded away. The fifth round saw Rivera stalking displaying more aggression as Gonzalez postured and circled the ring.

Halfway through in round six Rivera and Gonzalez traded in the center and closed the round strong exchanging. Continuing to trade in the seventh, Gonzalez landed the solid straight punches as Rivera attacked the body. Staying busy in the eighth Rivera and Gonzalez did not take a step back with Gonzalez snapping and extending his punches as Rivera landed the shorted harder punches. Fighting inside in the ninth, Rivera kept coming as Gonzalez attempted to extend his punches. The tenth and final round saw the two fighters sensing the urgency as Gonzalez and Rivera traded away to the final bell.

In the end, the judges scored the bout 96-94 for Gonzalez, 96-94 Rivera, and 97-93 as Joet Gonzalez edges out the split decision.

In a walkout bout, lightweight Christian “Chimpa” Gonzalez (18-2, 15 KOs) of Buena Park won an eight round unanimous decision over German Meraz (58-48-2, 38 KOs) of Mexico. Gonzalez by far was the superior of the two as he chased and stalked Meraz throughout the fight. A short right by Gonzalez in the seventh dropped Meraz as he got up and made it to the distance. All three judges scored the bout 80-71.

Garden City, Kansas’s super welterweight prospect Richard “Kansas Kid” Acevedo (3-0, 3 KOs) stopped Quantavious Green (1-3-1, 1 KO) of Shreveport, Louisiana in three rounds. Acevedo had Green in the corner unloading as referee Zachary Young stepped in to stop the fight at 40 seconds of the third.

East L.A’s Senisia “Super Bad” Estrada (14-0, 4 KOs) scored a third round TKO over Jhosep Vizcaino (6-7, 3 KOs) in a scheduled women’s flyweight bout. Off to a fast start Estrada dropped Vizcaino in the opening round. Estrada displayed far more superior hand speed in round two connecting Vizcaino with combinations. A crunching left hook by Estrada in round three did it as Vizcaino on a delayed reaction hit the canvas as referee Zachary Young stopped the fight at 20 seconds into the third.

In the opening bout from the NOVU at LA Live in Los Angeles super middleweight Maricela “La Diva” Cornejo (12-2, 5 KOs) stopped Samantha Pill (3-1) of Fairmont, West Virginia in three rounds as they ladies started things off. Cornejo teed off Pill with straight punches throughout the first two rounds, referee Jack Reiss stepped in to stop the fight at 41 seconds of the third.

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