By Rocky Morales and Miguel Maravilla at ringside
Photos: Sumio Yamada
Three weight class world champion, Kazuto Ioka (22-1, 13KO), made his invasion into super flyweight, a successful one as he thoroughly outboxed WBC #3 ranked contender, McWilliams Arroyo (17-4, 14KO), to win a ten round unanimous decision victory.
Ioka was able to dictate ring generalship throughout and dropped Arroyo hard in the third round with a perfectly timed right cross counter. With the victory, Ioka wins the WBC Silver super flyweight title and puts himself in position to challenge WBC champion Srisaket Rungvisai or any other super flyweight champion. Judges scored it 98-92, 99-90 and 98-92 all in favor of Ioka.
Super Flyweight Alexandru Marin (17-0, 11 KOs), Romania won a unanimous decision over Bruno Escalante (17-4, 7 KOs) of the Philippines. Marin landed a hard right hand to close the opening round as he hugged Escalante on the way to his corner. Stalking in round two, Marin connected once again with the right, snapping Escalante’s head back. The Romanian kept the pressure as he continued to land the right, backing Escalante to the ropes. In round four, Escalante cut Marin’s eye with a hard left hook as the Filipino kept the pressure. Staying at close range, Escalante and Marin mixed it up at the halfway point in the fifth. Past the halfway mark in the sixth, Escalante targeted the cut on Marin’s eye. However in round seven Marin backed Escalante with the right hand but the Filipino connected with a left backing Marin to the ropes and snapping his head. Late in the fight, Marin and Escalante stayed close continuing to exchange. The tenth and final round, Marin came out attacking letting his hands go as he kept Escalante stood and traded to the final bell roughing him and tackling him down to close. Judges scored the bout 96-94 Marin, 97-93 Escalante, 98-92 as Marin pulls the split decision.
Brenda Flores (13-4-1, 2KO) was the split decision winner over Louisa Hawton (8-2, 4KO) to win the first ever WBC Atomweight world title. In an all action fight, Flores was able to bloody Hawton’s nose early in the fight making for a bloodbath. Hawton never took a backwards step while Flores did her best to put on a boxing clinic but was often forced to trade with Hawton. In a decision that could have gone either way, the 25 year old from Tijuana, Mexico, Flores prevails over the 33 year old Aussie, Hawton. Judges scored it 97-93 Hawton, 97-93 Flores and 96-94 Flores. The newly created 103 pound Atomweight division seems a perfect fit for the 5’2” Flores who was fought as high as bantamweight in past bouts.
18 year old southpaw, Mario Ramos (6-0, 6KO) made minced meat out of sitting duck Alex Solorio (4-4) who was pummeled from pillar to post before being stopped at 2:17 of the third round. Solorio was squared up for as long as the fight lasted and was easy target practice for Ramos who picked him apart and battered him before the referee mercifully called a halt to the fight. With the knockout, the 5’10” super featherweight from San Diego wins his third fight of 2018.
In a four round middleweight bout, Jonathan Esquivel (7-0, 7KO) bludgeoned completely outclassed Joan Jose Valenzuela (5-10-1, 5KO), dropping him in the opening minute and stopping him at 1:51 of the first round. Valenzuela was knocked out for the fourth consecutive bout and put up little resistance.
In opening bout action from The Forum in Inglewood, CA, Joselito Velasquez (6-0, 5KO) kept his perfect record intact but was stretched the distance for the first time by Jose Alfredo Flores Chanez (6-7, 3KO). It was a workmanlike effort but clear cut victory for Velasquez who scored a shutout unanimous decision victory by scores of 60-54 on all three judges scorecards.