Ryan Songalia

Brian Viloria returns from yearlong absence to decision Juan Herrera

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Brian Viloria at a media workout for the April 2013 card in Macau. Photo by Chris Farina/Top Rank.

 

MANILA, Philippines – Former two-division titleholder Brian Viloria made his first ring appearance in nearly a year on Saturday, winning a unanimous decision over Puerto Rican journeyman Juan Herrera at the Texas Station Casino in Las Vegas.

The scores were 98-92 on two scorecards, while the third tallied the bout 97-93, all for the 2000 Olympic silver medalist Viloria (33-4, 19 knockouts) of Waipahu, Hawaii. Herrera (9-8, 4 KOs) lost his second straight fight.

Viloria, who had previously won titles at 108 and 112 pounds, used his jab effectively to control the awkward Herrera, but seemed content to land one punch at a time, to limited effect. Herrera was able to land punches from time to time, but lacked the power to hurt Viloria.

Viloria, 33, was fighting for the first time since losing his WBA and WBO flyweight belts to Juan Francisco Estrada last April by split decision. He will return to the scene of that loss on May 31, when he faces an opponent to be named at the Venetian Resort in Macau, on the undercard of the Nonito Donaire Jr.-Simpiwe Vetyeka WBA featherweight title fight.

“I’ve discussed our ‘wish list’ with Bob [Arum], but nothing is yet locked in,” Viloria’s manager, Gary Gittelsohn, told RingTV.com. “We all want a meaningful fight for the Macau card.”

In the main event, junior lightweight Alejandro Perez (19-4-1, 13 KOs) dropped a split decision to Mexican journeyman Juan Carlos Martinez (20-14-1, 7 KOs).

Martinez hadn't fought for nearly two years, but counts upset wins over Bernabe Concepcion and Jason Litzau-conqueror Jose Andres Hernandez among his accomplishments.

Perez had overcome losses to Rico Ramos and Diego Magdaleno to defeat Art Hovhannisyan en route to four straight victories.

 

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