Photo: Lina Baker, IG @seeyouringside
Over a year out of the ring and heavier than ever in his career, Randy “El Matador” Caballero (23-0, 13KO’s) finally got to fight again as he earned a TKO at the end of round seven over Ruben Garcia (15-1-1, 6KO’s) of Mexico City when referee Ray Corona waived the fight on the advice of the corner.
Caballero came out fast to the delight of the raucous Indio crowd at the Fantasy Springs as he looked to shake off the rust and started throwing shots with bad intentions, rocking Garcia early and often.
Garcia managed to gain his footing and use a bit of craft to hold Caballero but was caught with a right hand that dropped him in the seventh round. Garcia beat the count and made it to the bell but, his trainer had seen enough and made the right call to save his fighter for another day asking referee Ray Corona to waive the fight.
“After each round I felt stronger, my body felt good I could have gone the full ten rounds.” said Caballero after the fight.
“I want to fight the best at 122, but I want to fight as soon possible. It’s been a long time out of the ring and I felt some of the ring rust but I could tell I was hurting him.”
The journey back to respectability for East Los Angeles’s Frankie Gomez (20-0, 13KO’s) got under way tonight as he came in at 145 pounds against veteran Silverio Ortiz (29-17, 15KO’s) – a sign that Gomez is leaving the distractions behind him to focus on the huge promise and tremendous talent that has been stalled by regularly missing weight and ballooning to up to 180 pounds.
Gomez looked good and used his hand and foot speed to outwork and wear down Ortiz as he rolled to a 100-90 unanimous decision on all three judges’ cards.
“I felt faster, Freddie has been keeping me busy. I want to get back in the ring as soon as possible.” Gomez said following the fight. Staying busy appears to be the key to keeping the promising prospect out of trouble and away from distractions. “Freddie said I might go to the Philippines to train with Pacquiao, I really want to go”. A trip that would definitely keep Gomez away from distractions and in camp with a first ballot hall of famer to learn from.
Rocco Santomuro (13-0, 1KO) won a unanimous decision over Jose Estrella (14-10-1, 10KO’s) on scores of 59-55 (twice) and 58-56. The fight appeared closer than the 59-55 scorecard prompting boos from the Indio crowd. Santomuro, of Las Vegas is trained by Shane Mosely, was cut on the right side of his head from a clash of heads early in the fight and pushed through the adversity to pick up a win on the road.
Colorful character Neeco “The Rooster” Macias (11-0, 6KO’s) from Palm Desert California came out charging at professional opponent Paul Mpendo (8-14-4, 4KO’s) and wore him down to the nub. Macias’s smothering style swarmed Mpendo with an in your face style that’s as sloppy as it is entertaining. Maicas’ll never be mistaken for a technical master but he sure has a work ethic as he made Mpendo quit after five rounds. Before the sixth started referee Eddie Hernandez waived the fight with Mpendo exhausted and on his stool.
Local fighter Alberto Fundora (7-0, 3KO’s) remained unbeaten after stopping Cesar Ruiz (2-3, 1KO) at 1:56 in the second round. Using a long jab to setup big right hands behind it, Fundora looks to be getting better with each outing. Ruiz went down early in the second from a right hand and beat the count only to be sent down again moments later and counted out by referee Ray Corona.
Opening the nights action Jesus Sanchez (1-0, 1KO) stopped Gibran Gutierrez (0-2, 0KOs) at 2:43 in the 2nd round. Sanchez got a nice win in his pro debut after pummeling Gutierrez until referee Eddie Hernandez had seen enough and jumped in to stop the action.