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Alvarado Defeats Martinez, Picks up Vacant 140 Pound Title

(Photo © Chris Farina / Top Rank)
(Photo © Chris Farina / Top Rank)

By German Villasenor


The Softball Country Arena, Denver, CO- Top ten ranked super lightweight Mike Alvarado, 31-0 (22), made his return home a good one by defeating a very game Gabriel “El Rey” Martinez, 27-3-1 (14), via unanimous decision in ten on Saturday night’s FSN-televised/“Top Rank Live” main event.
 
Martinez came out fast, throwing punches in bunches from the outside but falling to the ground after missing a shot, with the referee mistakenly calling it a knockdown.
 
Alvarado would be outworked throughout the round but did land the harder shots in the frame.
 
The pace remained in high gear through the third round, with Martinez throwing more often, while backpedaling. Alvarado came forward, landing the harder, sharper shots, although missing too often with right hand haymakers.

Alvarado’s pressure paid dividends in the fourth, despite the lack of a telling shot. Martinez did develop bruising under his right eye from the left hooks Alvarado kept landing thus far.
 
Martinez’s constant in-and-out and lateral movement made it hard for Alvarado- who kept the pressure up nonetheless- to make contact.
 
Alvarez would send an off-balance Martinez to the canvas in the sixth, with a late blow hitting the fallen fighter atop the head. The referee waived off the fall but failed to acknowledge the infraction by Alvarez.
 
The bout got dirty in the next round, as Alvarado finally got back on the inside with body shots. Martinez returned the favor with rabbit shots toward the end of the round.
 
The dirty tactics remained in the following round, with the referee finally stepping in and giving warning to both men.
 
Martinez would take a break after Alvarado’s rabbit punch landed in the ninth round. Upon re-engaging in the fight, Alvarado kept landing the fewer yet harder shots against the very quick and shifty Martinez.
 
As expected, both fighters went all out in the tenth and final round, with Martinez holding off Alvarado’s charges and the latter doing more than enough throughout the fight to win the IBF Latino super lightweight title (which replaced the WBC regional title Alvarado dropped before the fight)
 
Scores were 99-90, 100-89 and 100-90 all for Alvarado in a much closer fight than called by the judges.
 
Marroquin Defeats Beranza at the End of Eight
 
Super bantamweight Roberto Marroquin, 20-1 (14), coming off his first loss, faced hard-hitting veteran Jose Beranza, 30-21-3 (26), dropping him twice en route to a unanimous eight-round win.
 
Beranza kept falling just short of his hooking shots through the first couple of rounds, while the taller Marroquin would land the quicker, sharper, straighter shots beating the Mexico City fighter to the punch.
 
Marroquin switched the attack in the third, going to the body before a hard right hand high atop the head during an exchange dropped the iron-chinned Beranza late in the round. After Beranza quickly got up, both men engaged for the rest of round on the inside.
 
Beranza came back strong in the following round, trying to make up for the knockdown, seemingly winning the round. Suddenly, he was on the receiving end of a Marroquin shot which sent his mouthpiece flying out late in the round.
 
The fight settled into a rhythmic tempo with nothing to separate the fighters, until another big right hand behind combinations sent Beranza down once more late in the sixth round.
 
Beranza quickly got up and fought it out on rubbery legs until the end of the stanza.
 
Beranza received a long break late in the seventh, as he once more lost his mouthpiece and his corner had trouble putting it back in. Luckily, Beranza got out of the round seconds later.
 
Marroquin met a desperate Bernaza in the final round and came on aggressively. Both men landed hard shots with Marroquin once more momentarily sending out his opponent’s mouthpiece.
 
Beranza’s attack paid dividends in the round, bruising and causing swelling under Marroquin’s right eye.
 
Beranza tried his best but it was all too little too late with Marroquin winning via 78-71 (twice) and 79-70.
 
Martinez Thwarts Quezada’s Pro Debut with Stoppage in Two
 
Lightweight southpaw Sammy “Sandman” Martinez, 4-0 (3), had a very raw Martin Quezada in all kinds of problems in the first round. The shorter Martinez found an easy target, working well on the inside and nearly toppling the debuting Quezada with a right and left to the face late in the round. Quezada kept throwing wild shots, leaving himself wide open with a very low guard.
 
Martinez jabbed and found an easy home for his left in the second. A barrage of inside shots doubled over Quezada to the ground late in the round before two uppercuts and a right to the body sent his opponent to his knees. The referee stopped the bout at 2:33 of the round.


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