ALL PHOTO CREDIT: LINA BAKER / SEEYOURINGSIDE PHOTOGRAPHY
Albert Baker, ringside
Since turning pro in 2013 Diego De La Hoya (14-0, 8KOs) has moved at an alarming rate towards attaining contender status. Promoter Golden Boy and older cousin Oscar De La Hoya have put the young fighter from Mexicali, Baja California through tough assignments during his time on the job as a prospect, and the kid just keeps getting better each time out.
Arturo Badillo (20-10, 18KO’s) came out firing in the first round, landing a right hand to the head of De La Hoya only to get rocked badly when De La Hoya returned fire. A cut opened up on the corner of the right eye of De La Hoya from a punch in the second round that the corner had control of right away. Coming out for the fourth, De La Hoya landed a hard right-left hook combination to the body of Badillo sending him to the canvas in clear agony.
Carlos Morales (13-1-3, 6KO’s) of Los Angeles ground out a ten round unanimous decision victory over tough Omar Tienda (14-2, 8KO’s). During the fight, Morales was cut over the right eye in the third round from what looked like a punch but it didn’t have much of an effect on the fight as his corner did a good job containing it.
Local favorite and resident seat filler Nick Arce (7-0, 6KOs) broke down Luis Lizarraga Jr. (5-8-1, 2KOs) to win a six round unanimous decision to mark the first time he went past four rounds, and didn’t stop his opponent. Arce fired sneaky right hands to the body throughout the back and forth fight that saw both fighters have their moments. During the third round Lizarraga appeared to have his best as he landed big right hands to the face of Arce, even as Arce landed a thunderous right uppercut near the end of the stanza.
Oscar Duarte (4-0-1, 2KO’s) defeated Archie Weah (1-5, 0KOs) of Norcross Georgia over four rounds on scores of 40-35 twice and 39-36. Duarte came out hard in the first landing a big right hand that sent Weah sprawling to the canvas in a highlight knockdown. Weah would make it to his feet and survive the rest of the fight. Duarte couldn’t follow up on the knockdown but was able to dominate the rest of the action.
Opening the evening’s action super featherweight Francisco Esparza (3-0, 0KOs) defeated Antonio Martinez (3-5, 3KOs) via unanimous decision on scores of 40-36 on all three scorecards. Despite winning all the rounds on the cards this fight was tough on the young Fernando Vargas trained Esparza who hails from Las Vegas. Martinez stayed in the fight and landed big shots in the second half of the bout to keep it interesting.