Full Report/Gallery Guereca vs. Munoz
Ringside report by Gerardo Martinez
Photos by Jose Leon Castillo III
The idiom that states you can’t teach an old dog new tricks seems fitting with the result of Saturday night’s main event in the Johhny Tapia Presents card at the Crowne Plaza Hotel. El Paso’s Bernardo “Tuff Enough” Guereca (17-17-1, 4 KO’s) had the same tricks up his sleeve he’s had for the last few years in giving a slew of New Mexico and Colorado fighters tough fights.
“Hurricane” Hector Muñoz got caught up in one of those old tricks and history repeated itself in the same city, but different venue, when Guereca sneaked a powerful left uppercut to the chin of Muñoz, dropping him in the center of the ring. Muñoz was able to stand up on spaghetti legs and claim he was good to go, but experienced referee Rocky Burke knew better and called a halt to the bout at 2:59 of the first round.
The last time the two met, close to nine years ago for the New Mexico state welterweight belt, Guereca stopped Muñoz at 2:29 of the first round. There was a thirty second difference this time around. The other difference was that this time, Guereca only had six days notice.
“I know I have power and that I could knock him out, said Guereca. “I also knew that if I let the fight go past three rounds I would lose.”Guereca also mentioned that he knew Muñoz was coming in strong and well conditioned after having helped new WBO champ Mike Alvarado train for his successful defeat of Brandon Rios.
Cabral rises to the occasion
Albuquerque’s Cristian “El Puma” Cabral (5-0-1, 3 KO’s) showed that he has more bite than bark and withstood a last minute onslaught from KOTC champ Donald Sanchez (2-1, 1 KO), taking a unanimous decision win with scores of 59-55 and 58-56 times two.
Sanchez was gun shy throughout the first five rounds of the six round contest landing sporadically and getting caught consistently with overhand rights from the speedier Cabral.
Cabral was able to stagger Sanchez with the overhand right once in the second and another time in the fifth round. Sanchez was doing quite a but of pawing and throwing wide shots Cabral could see coming from a mile away.
It wasn’t until the sixth round that Sanchez finally listened to his corner and let his hands go more. Sanchez let loose and began backing up Cabral with straight shots to the head as Cabral tired. It would be too little too late as Cabral had too much heart and guts to let the MMA fighter steal the show.
“I had to prove everybody wrong, Donald beat Coca and now I beat Donald, so that means I could beat Coca,” proclaimed Cabral, wo seems willing to avenge the only blemish on his record, a draw against the hard luck kid Michael Coca Gallegos.
Socorro’s Adrian “El Monstruo Mexicano” Lopez (4-1-1, 1 KO) looked light on his feet in his light heavyweight contest with Ricky Villafuerte (0-2). Both men used the first round to study each other.
Lopez decisions Villafuerte
In the second, Lopez brought on the pressure attacking the body of his left handed opponent. Villafuerte was able to land a straight right to begin the third round, but Lopez dominated the rest of the round with his continued body attack and hooks upstairs.
The final round was again dominated by Lopez who used good defense to elude any kind of attack that Villafuerte attempted. Villafuerte was able to land some, but with little to no effect on Lopez. Lopez backed up his opponent in the final seconds of the round with a full body and head attack.
At the end of four the judges 40-36 and 39-37 time two giving Lopez a well deserved unanimous decision win.
Castillo-Bautista steals show
In an entertaining opener Santa Fe’s Paul “The Prince” Castillo (3-0, 1 KO) and Albuquerque’s Diego Bautista (0-2) gave the crowd in attendance Rios-Alvarado-ish show knocking each other down in separate rounds.
Castillo wasted no time taking it to the unwon Bautista in the first round. Bautista weathered the initial storm, but got caught late in round with a hard straight right. He got and was saved by the bell.
The Santa Fe pug tried catching Bautista again to being the second, but Bautista used the ring and recovered. Bautista would bring on a body attack on Castillo and end it with an overhand right that would send Castillo to the canvas. Castillo got up wobbled and survived the last few seconds of the round.
Taking the advice of his corner Castillo boxed more than brawled in the third. He got caught with a one-two combination, but returned a hard right. Bautista at this point had begun taunting Castillo trying to get him to brawl.
The fourth round would determine the winner of the contest and Castillo had more gas left in the tank than his opponent who wasn’t able to land much. Castillo began backing up Baustista against the ropes and punishing him with every sort of punch. Bautista was able to block some of the punches and get off the ropes. Both men ended the fourth and final round with a furious exchange in the center of the ring with Castillo getting the best of it.
Castillo would take a hard fought unanimous decision win with scores of 38-36 times three.