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Diaz Stops Sanchez; Gonzalez Hands Cancio First Defeat

(Photo © German Villasenor)
(Photo © German Villasenor)

By German Villasenor at ringside

September 29, 2012- What seemed on paper to be a tough task for former two-time world lightweight champion Julio “Kidd” Diaz, 40-7 (29), turned out rather easy. Last seen stopping Henry Aurad in brutal fashion in the very same venue, Diaz disposed of the taller, lankier Hector Sanchez, 19-3 (9), inside five rounds of action on the Golden Boy Promotions/Telefutura “Solo Boxeo” main event in front of a raucous crowd at the Fantasy Springs Casino Events Center on Saturday night.
Diaz proved to be too much for Sanchez who, despite a longer reach, was susceptible to Diaz’s quick shots, which caught the long-necked Puerto Rican as he pulled back in the early part of the first round. Past the halfway mark, a three-punch combo punctuated by a hard right hand to the head sent Sanchez down face first to the canvas. On very unsteady legs, Sanchez managed to survive the round.

Diaz would get caught by some good, hard shots from then on but shook them off, frequently working Sanchez’s body in return. Clearly ahead on points into the fifth round of the scheduled 10-rounder, Diaz staggered Sanchez badly once more during an exchange.
Diaz jumped in with a barrage of punches as Sanchez reeled against the ropes, unable to properly defend himself. Referee Tom Taylor opted to stop the fight, handing the TKO victory to Diaz at the 2:03 mark of the round.
The co-featured bout saw skilled, hard-luck super featherweight Roger “Speedy” Gonzalez pulling off the upset as he outboxed, stood and traded with heavier punching, local favorite Andrew Cancio via majority decision at the end of 10 fast-paced, grueling rounds.
Gonzalez used his hand speed and legs very well, moving side to side, making Cancio follow and reel off punches in bunches, particularly a pesky left cross. Gonzalez’s left found a home all night as he stopped and pivoted the opposite way as Cancio unsuccessfully tried to cut off the ring.
Gonzalez sported a bruised right eye and a small knick past the third round although it never became an issue in the fight. Cancio never stopped trying to cut off the ring, having some success in spots during the first half of the fight. Stepping on the gas after a left hook set up by a heavy body attack, Cancio hurt Gonzalez in the eighth round.
Bleeding from the nose with a bruised face and cut over his right eye, Cancio pressed on hard to the body and head with a tiring Gonzalez managing to survive a hard ninth round. Gonzalez recovered his legs enough to box, trade and do more than enough to finish the 10th and final round.
After a lengthy break, the decision for Gonzalez, 28-6 (18), was rendered with scores of 95-95 and 96-94 (twice). Blythe, California’s Cancio tasted his first pro defeat, with his record moving to 14-2-2 (11).
In undercard action, featherweight Manuel Robles Jr. looked solid in winning his pro debut, sweeping the cards against Tijuana’s Victor Serrano, who saw his record drop to 0-3.
Heavyweight Gerald Washington, 3-0 (2), dropped Terrance Perro, 1-1 (1), in the first round of their scheduled four-rounder with a right hand. Unfortunately, that seemed to be the highlight of Washington’s repertoire as he clinched often throughout the bout.
Perro worked well in spots with his jab from the second round on, bloodying Washington’s nose. It would not be enough as Perro dropped a unanimous decision via scores of 40-34 and 39-35 (twice).
Super welterweight Giovanni Santillan, 5-0 (3), dropped an overmatched Juan Zuniga, 3-19-2 (1), with a debilitating left hand to the body in the second round of their scheduled four-rounder. Santillan rode his own momentum and forced Zuniga to quit at 2:57 into the round.
The walkout bout of the evening saw Riverside, California’s Daniel Franco, 4-0-1 (2), drop Jesus Sandoval, 2-1-1, in the third round by a left hand to the head with the fight stopped moments later by referee David Denkin as Sandoval found himself under heavy artillery. Time of the stoppage was 2:51 of the third frame.
Questions and comments can be sent to German at
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