Heading into Saturday’s Victor Terrazas-Cristian Mijares junior featherweight bout opinion was split on who would win the fight and that’s exactly that way it played out with Terrazas getting up off the canvas to win a razor thin split-decision.
Terrazas (37-2-1, 21 knockouts), who picked up the vacant WBC 122-pound title, got up from a 12th-round knockdown to win by scores of 114-113 and 115-112, against a 114-113 score for Mijares (47-7-2, 22 KOs), at Arena Ciudad in Mexico City.
Both veterans started by looking at what the other had to offer in a chess match of sorts, though Mijares’ better athleticism and speed seemed to give him the edge in the early going. Both enjoyed success with the jab, and after four completed rounds the score (per the WBC’s open scoring policy) was announced 38-38 on all three cards.
In the fifth, Terrazas landed several solid punches to head and body, though in tune with the fight Mijares charges back, even rocking Terrazas’ head back in the closing moments of the round. The pattern continued with one guy landing and the other guy firing back, but Terrazas, the naturally bigger man, was able to the former 115-pound titleholder backwards.
At the end of the eighth Terrazas was up 77-76, 77-75 with the other even at 76-76. The ninth rond seemed to favor the aggression of Terrazas before a quiet 10th saw both fighters slow the pace looking to press the action in the championship rounds. With the fight seeming slipping away, Mijares mounted a late rally, landing several combinations that forced Terrazas back, cutting his left eye in the penultimate round. In the final round, Mijares pressed forward landing to the head and body stunning Terrazas and depositing him to the canvas in the centre of the ring.
Terrazas was able to rise, and though not overly hurt, covered up and saw out the final round to ultimately win his first world title.
Two-division beltholder Juan Manuel Lopez made sure Puerto Rico went 3-0 on their trip to Mexico by knocking out Eugenio Lopez at 59 seconds into the second round with a right hand that caught Lopez flush dropping him flat on his back. The referee instantly waved the fight off.
Interestingly, afterwards Mexican icon Jorge Arce entered the ring, both fighters shared a hug and several photos before Lopez beckoned the legendary Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. into the ring, a beaming Chavez stood enjoyed the cheers before entering the ring for photos.
It looks as though Lopez could fight Arce who has been reportedly contemplating one more fight. While neither appear to be the fighter they once were it has the makings of an exciting fight.
Former 2007 amateur world championship bronze medalist McJoe Arroyo survived a trip to the canvas early in the fourth frame to dig out a unanimous decision over Jairo Hernandez, who lost for the third time in four fights. Arroyo 27, responded well to the adversity winning by scores of 78-73, 76-75 and 77-74 to up his ledger to 13-0 (11), while Hernandez dips to 12-3 (3).
One time amateur standout Jonathan “La Bomba” Gonzalez continued his rise up the flyweight ladder, fighting for the third time this year already, by winning a unanimous decision over tough Francisco Perez by scores of 78-74 (twice) and 77-75. The Puerto Rican native who had previously stopped all but one of his opponents used his considerable speed and reflex’s to fire of quick fire combinations but was unable to hurt his adversary having to settle for the decision.
In a swing bout, Raul Hinojosa (8-1-1, 6 KOs) outpointed Edwin Ortiz (4-5, 3 KOs) in a four-round junior welterweight bout by three scores of 39-36.
Middleweight prospect Gilberto Ramirez (25-0-1, 20 KOs) served notice of his intentions to the 160-pound division with a third-round stoppage of Juan De Angel. From the opening bell Ramirez, just 21, used his height and reach, spearing De Angel with his jab. In the third stanza, Ramirez trapped De Angel along the ropes landing a barrage of punches which forced the Colombian to take solace on the canvas, though he rose the contest was waved off at 2:06 of the round.