Soft foes at Hard Rock
Tapia, Archuleta defeat foes, setting up rubber match
Ringside report by Gerardo Martinez
Photos by Raymond Mares
Showing that he can still draw a crowd, Albuquerque's Johnny "Mi Vida Loca" Tapia (58-5-2, 30 K's) brought the close to 2,200 fans (c. 1,600 paid) at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino showroom to their feet by firing away at his carefully-chosen opponent, Mexican Jose "Rayito" Alonso (32-16-2, 15 KOs).
Having lost now, seven of his last eight bouts, all but one by knockout, Alonso was a far cry from the much tougher competition Tapia faced in his heyday, but he was a step up from Tapia's last opponent, sparring partner Jorge Reyes.
Reyes, on the other hand, was used in the co-main event, to supply Frankie Archuleta with an easy win - or what should have been an easy win.
Alonso was well over the contracted weight, which made him ineligible to win the obscure IBC's 130-pound regional trinket at stake. Though outweighing the 128-pound Tapia by seven pounds, the extra baggage did not seem to slow him down.
The action got started in the second round with Alonso able to land a couple of overhand rights to Tapia's face. Tapia fought back at the end of the round with some clear shots to the face and body. Glimpses of the Tapia of old were visible in the third when Tapia began outlanding his opponent. Once Tapia got into his groove there was not much Alonso could do.
In the fourth Tapia came out on the attack and those in attendance cheered him on. Tapia connected a strong left hook to the body of Alonso in the middle of the ring. Alonso's knees bent and he began backing up towards the ropes.
Seeing his opponent hurt, Tapia lifted his arms in the air before battering his opponent with multiple body shots. Still trying to recover from the previous left hook, Alonso offered nothing in return and just rested against the rope taking the punishment. After a few seconds Alonso's corner had seen enough and the white towel came flying in. Referee Rocky Burke stepped in and stopped the contest at 1:43 of the fourth stanza.
After the fight Tapia thanked the frenzied crowd for their support and it was announced that his next fight would be against his two-time foe Frankie Archuleta at a date to be determined.
Archuleta has to work
Las Vegas, NM native, past-and-future Tapia foe, Frankie Archuleta (27-7-1, 14 KOs) went eight rounds against a somewhat revamped Jorge "El Gallito" Reyes (21-29-2, 17 KOs) of El Paso.
As some fans might remember, Reyes was defeated by Tapia in four rounds in his last outing and has not added a "W" to his record since 2000. He's also lost an amazing 18 of his last 20 bouts.
Even more surprising: Reyes, outweighed by ten pounds (thank God for commissions who don't answer to anyone), the professional opponent put up a fight over eight rounds against Archuleta in the co-main event.
Archuleta dominated the early rounds with faster punches and movement. Reyes came alive in the fourth able to land some shots on Archuleta.
Archuleta was landing the clearer shots, but would not follow up allowing Reyes to stick around for the later rounds. The gutsy Reyes did stick around and continued exchanging with Archuleta until the final bell rang.
After eight the judges gave Archuleta a unanimous decision win with scores of 80-72 times three.
Arrellin gets a snack
Wasting little time between fights, Albuquerque lightweight Randy "Savage" Arrellin (6-3, 4 KOs), getting an easy opponent who's now 0-5 in his last handful of fights, put in the rounds for a shutout decision.
Kearney, Nebraska's Brandon Quintana (2-6, 2 KOs) offered almost nothing in response to Arrellin's assault until the fourth round when he caught him off guard with a couple of right to the face.
Arrellin answered back in fifth and sixth round with a body attack that kept Quintana from mounting any kind of comeback.
After six, the judges were all in agreement and scored the contest 60-54 for Arrellin.
Arrellin will stay busy with an already scheduled bout on the November 13th Crespin card in Las Vegas, NM against former bantamweight Bryan Garcia, who is coming off a three-year layoff and is unwon in his last ten bouts.
In a lackadaisical heavyweight bout, Albuquerque debuter Josh "Big Country" Lanier (1-0) was unable to put away the scrappy and also debuting Eric "The Soldier" Savadra (0-1).
Lanier scored a knockdown against Savadra in the fourth. Savadra beat the count, but Lanier was unable to capitalize because he was out of breath like his opponent. Both fighters looked like they needed more conditioning, but Lanier was the faster of the two and was able to score more throughout the rounds. After four the judges gave the fight to Lanier with scores of 40-35 times three.
In a somewhat entertaining bantamweight contest Iowa's Edson Renteria (1-4) came out with his first win as a pro against El Paso's Wesley Marquez (0-1). Neither fighter never really took control of the contest in back and forth action over four rounds. Renteria was able to land the harder shots throughout the fight and the judges gave the fight to him 40-36 on all scorecards. Although it was much closer than what the scores indicated.
In the first bout of the night former amateur standout Charles "The Beast" Alderete (1-0) made his professional debut by battling fellow debuter Derrick Casaus (0-1) at 170 lb.
Casaus spent the round jabbing and keeping his shorter opponent away. Alderete tried unsuccessfully to get around the jab. His mouthpiece flew out twice in the first round. In second Alderete was able to begin landing some good counters with movement and counter punching. Alderete seemed to have found his rhythm in the third and was landing hard straight and overhand rights to the face of Casaus. Alderete once again tossed his mouthpiece out for no apparent reason allowing his tiring opponent to get a rest. Referee Lorenzo Saiz justifiably deducted a point. The best action came in the fourth when both fighters came out swinging and landing hard shots. Casaus was content with landing single shots and Alderete landed in two's and three's. Casaus tired towards the end of the round and Alderete took full advantage by swinging away until the bell sounded. At the end, the judges 39-36, 39-37 and 39-36 all for Alderete.