Junior welterweight Giovani Santillan (19-0, 10 KOs) remains unbeaten after thoroughly out performing the taller Jose De Jesus Macias (18-6-2, 9 KOs) over eight rounds on Friday’s “Path to Glory” main event.
Santillan dropped Macias in the second round with a counter right hook, and from that point forward, established the tempo required to defeat the lanky striker from Mexico.
“He had somewhat of an awkward style,” said Santillan, who is from San Diego. “But after I scored a knockdown in the second, plenty of angles opened up for me.”
Santillan, who came into this fight well prepared having sparred with Tim Bradley, moved well and appeared to grow stronger as the fight progressed.
“We trained hard for this fight,” said Santillan, who is 24-years-old. “I could have done better in a few rounds, but overall, I’m happy with my performance.
Official scores read: 80-72, 79-72, 78-73.
In the six-round co-feature, lightweight Jose Roman (22-1-1, 15 KOs) needed two rounds to dispatch Jose Angel Martinez (14-9-1, 9 KOs). Early in the second, the pair clashed heads, which led to both suffering cuts.
Roman shrugged off the bump, but Martinez was slower to his feet and Roman took advantage. He peppered Martinez with a wall of punches, knocking him out at the 1:06 mark of the second round.
In what was largely a technical fight, Carlos Carlson (21-1, 11 KOs), the No. 14 ranked bantamweight by the WBC, delivered another smooth performance by out boxing Giovanni Caro (23-18-4, 19 KOs) through six rounds.
Carlson, who fights out of Tijuana, Mex., frequently targeted the body with his power left hook. The routine body shots sapped the energy out of Caro, who is based in Mexico City, Mex. Carlson cruised to a unanimous decision win with scores 60-54 twice, 59-55.
In a good old-fashioned slugfest, featherweight Erick Ituarte (13-1-1, 2 KOs) of Santa Ana, Calif. used a relentless attack to stymie Fernando Fuentes (7-7, 1 KO) of Hemet, Calif.
In the first, Ituarte dropped Fuentes with a two-punch combination. Fuentes, for his part, never backed down from the free-throwing Ituarte. Ituarte, however, proved too accurate for the oft back-pedaling Fuentes. Official scores for Ituarte read: 60-53, 57-56, 58-55.
Lightweight Manuel Mendez (10-1-1, 6 KOs) earned a tougher than expected knockout win over stubborn veteran Jose Araiza (34-16-1, 25 KOs). Mendez, fighting out of Indio, Calif. and trained by Joel Diaz, hit pay dirt during the final minute of the fourth and final round. He power-punched the Mexico-based Araiza from corner-to-corner until referee Ray Corona halted the punishment at the 2:18 mark.
Opening the “Path to Glory” card were lightweights Cesar Villarraga (9-1, 4 KOs) of Colombia and Hugo Padilla (2-6, 1 KO) of Mexico. Villarraga dominated the four-round fight from start-to-finish by using superior hand speed and a stingy defense. All three judges scored the fight for Villarraga, 40-36.