It was a celebration as Tijuana’s favorite daughter Jackie “Aztec Princess” Nava (26-4-3, 11KOs) earned the right to call herself a champion once again when she complete dominated Panama’s Chantall “Fiera” Martinez (15-5, 6KOs) over ten rounds to capture the WBA super bantamweight title Saturday night at a bursting Tijuana Municipal Auditorium. Over five thousand raging fans brought Nava to tears with their chants and over whelming support through out her bout and event. The marathon event, which featured twelve professional bouts headlined by Nava’s coronation, was presented by Zanfer Promotions with the main event broadcast live in Mexico on the Azteca channel.
The taller but slower Martinez established her jab early in hopes of keeping the fireplug Nava at a distance. Nava inched herself closer with feints and attempted a couple of left hooks that missed their mark. Nava was finally able to score a jab and find her distance. Later in the round Nava counterpunched with a jab and straight right that got Martinez’s attention. The action heated up in the second and third as both began to exchange bombs early in the round. Martinez downfall became evident as she threw really wide power punches that were more slaps that anything else and Nava had no trouble scoring right thru them with her straight right hands or upper cuts from either fist. After an exchange in which Nava scores all the telling shots in the second, Martinez didn’t help her cause as she taunted Nava for more. Nava was only more than happy to oblige and kept landing combinations that began with a left hook to the body and then finished up on top. By the end of the third it was evident that Nava was the superior fighter inside the ring.
A focused came out of the fourth while Martinez seemed anxious to make something happen for herself since it was evident that she had lost every round so far. Nava had no trouble to pick her punches and land almost every time she threw while Martinez threw punches in bunches out desperation. Every time Nava scored it received a huge response from her hometown crowd and it seemed to fuel her desire to end the night early.
Her chance came in the fifth as she welcomed Martinez to the round with a straight right then a jab followed with an ever harder right. Nava looked to be on autopilot as she scored at will, left hooks, uppercuts and everything in between in hopes of ending the fight. Martinez, seeing her title slip away, stalked Nava around the ring but continued to throw wide punches that Nava was able to counter punch on the inside. Nava then scored with another jab and right hand but this time it made a visibly effect on Martinez as she took a step back. Nava jumped on her and began to land flurries of punches to the face and body of Martinez. Martinez finally succumbed to the punishment and went down. The strong Panamanian beat the count and Nava goes for the finish but Martinez was able to survive the round.
With chants of “Mexico, Mexico” echoing thru the building, Nava went on with the task at hand and tried to end matters once and for all. Nava kept battering Martinez but a more measured clip looking to put a little more on her punches to force a knock out. Martinez held her ground and took the assault and even scored a nice over hand right at the end of the round to let Nava know she was still there.
The same pattern continued for the rest of the contest as Nava kept scoring with quick combinations, darting inside and then out, while Martinez tried to land something that would make difference but she was just too slow. Martinez was game and tried to respond every time Nava scored but it was like they were on different races with Nava being the flashy sports car and Martinez the bulky off-road truck.
At the end, it was no surprise when all three judges scored it a landslide victory for Nava with scores of 100-89 twice and 99-90.
“I want to thank everybody in Tijuana, this win is for all of you,” Nava stated seconds after her victory lap around the ring on the shoulders of her husband, Mario Mendoza, and after composing herself from a wave of emotion of seeing the Tijuana crowd on their feet in a ovation. “I want to thank you all for your support and there is still more left in me.”
Salguero Finishes Melo Quick
Tijuana light flyweight Felipe Salguero (16-2-1, 11KOs) only needed a little over five rounds to stop Panamanian veteran Carlos “Shangai” Melo (21-14-1, 2KOs) in the semi-main event scheduled for ten rounds.
Salguero, who had not fought since June of last year when he stopped Hector Moreno in two rounds, is the WBF light flyweight champion which he captured by defeating Rigoberto “Planchitas” Casillas in a barn burner majority decision on the under card of Morales-Lorenzo back in December of 2010. Melo, a ten-year veteran, far outweighs Salguero with his experience as he has packed his bags and traveled around the world facing the likes of Edgar Sosa and Oscar “Ceviche” Ibarra in Mexico, Milan Melindo in the Philippines and Katsunari Takayama in Japan among others.
The first round was one of study as both fighters looked to see what the other had. Salguero was content in shooting out an occasional jab as a range finder while Melo just moved in and out as he circled the perimeter. Salguero stepped on the gas in the second and began to put together nice combinations that quickly began to find their target. The pace was fast as Salguero scored with a jab followed with a right hand then punctuated with a left hook to the body. Melo was also throwing but not really scoring but kept busy with occasional punches.
Melo began to counter punch in the third and scored a nice short right hand as Salguero threw a right hook to the body. Salguero applied even more pressure in the fourth that resulted in Melo to get on his bike and refuse to engage as he kept circling around the ring. Melo did display great defense as he slipped a series of punches from Salguero and then pivoted to land his own right hand. Just as the momentum seemed to shift, Salguero caught a moving Melo with a right hook to the chin in the opening seconds of the fifth that caused a late reaction from the Panamanian sent him down. Not visibly terribly hurt, Melo still refused to get to his feet while referee Juan Morales Lee counted him out giving Salguero the KO win. Official time was :24 of the fifth round.
After suffering a knockdown in the second round, super lightweight Misael Castillo (21-1, 19KOs) kept plugging along to force a sixth round stoppage of Manuel “Zurdo” Aguilar (18-8, 12KOs) and rebound successfully from his first professional loss and a hand injury suffered late last year. The hard-hitting southpaw Aguilar of Hermosillo, Mexico caught Castillo early in the second with a straight left that sent him to the canvas. Ensenada, Mexico’s Castillo beat the count and got back to work with a relentless attack. Aguilar kept punching and scoring with inside punches that rocked Castillo but not enough to stop him. All it took for the referee to stop the action was a hurried flurry of punches from Castillo as he trapped Aguilar against the ropes. Official score was 1:115 of the sixth round.
All it took was a nasty gash and a little over five minutes for super bantamweight Maximino Flores (11-1, 9KOs) to force a second round TKO over the game Ernesto Guerrero (8-3-3, 3KOs) of Hermosillo, Mexico. Guerrero chased Flores around the ring and was forcing the fight but Flores was able to fight on his back foot and scored with his long arms straight punches that opened a cut over left eye. Flores kept punishing the eye-prompting referee Juan Jose Ramirez to have the doctor check the eye. The ringside doctor did not see Guerrero fit to continue and waived off the contest. Official time was 2:38 of the second round.
Welterweight Jorge “Pantera” Silva (18-2-1, 15KOs) won a unanimous eight round decision over Jose Maria Valdez (3-5-2, 1KOs), both of Tijuana, in a run of the mill bout. Silva controlled the action with nothing of note transpiring. The official scores were not read.
Bryan Ramirez (9-3, 5KOs) scored a quick knock out over Ensenada, Mexico’s Francisco Piña (5-3-3, 2KOs) in a scheduled super featherweight bout. After suffering a cut in the first, Piña was not able to withstand the attack from Ramirez of Los Angeles, CA, and succumbed to a barrage of punches at the 2:06 mark of the second round.
Tijuana lightweight Fernando “Cuervito” Garcia (16-4-2, 10KOs) earned a hard fought eight round unanimous decision over tough veteran Hector “Chocolate” Marquez (30-23, 21KOs) of Mexico City. The thirty-eight year old veteran has fought big names in a near twenty-year career such as Jose Luis Castillo, Juan Manuel Marquez and Jorge “Coloradito” Solis. Marquez was effective at scoring with everything with his left hand, jabs, uppercuts, hooks and everything in between while Garcia scored better when fighting from the outside but insisted in getting into the proverbial phone booth and fighting in the inside. A cut on the hairline of Marquez made no difference in the action except for the free flowing red fluid through out the fight. Official scores were 77-75 twice and 78-74, all for Garcia.
In a mild upset, Miguel “Maikito” Martinez Jr. spectacularly stopped Giovanni Segura’s brother Luis Segura at the 2:59 of the second round. Both fighters gave as good as they got in the first round with Martinez, the taller of the two, being the more technical while Segura, reminiscent of his brother’s style, went for the bigger power punches. At the end of the second round, Martinez scores a counter right hand that sent Segura crashing down to the canvas. Segura struggled to get up and beat the count but referee Manuel Rincon decided correctly that he was not fit to continue. With the win, Martinez of Tijuana wins his pro debut and goes to 1-0, 1KO, while Segura goes back home to Ciudad Altamirano, Guerrero, Mexico with a 0-1.
A rare Mexican middleweight four round bout resulted in unpopular majority decision draw as Victor Fonseca (0-1-1) landed the more effective and what seemed the harder punches on Antonio Gutierrez (1-0-1, 1KO), both of Tijuana, through out the twelve minutes of action. Fonseca made good use of his long reach and scored with a two-punch combo of jab followed with a right uppercut. At times he added a left hook for good measure. Gutierrez came in stronger in the two last rounds but tended to hold more than attack. Official scores were 38-38 twice and 39-37.
Jackie Nava’s cousin, junior welterweight Daniel Nava (1-0, 1KO), made his pro debut a good one when he battered Rodolfo Arevalo (0-1), both of Tijuana, from pillar to post to stop him with only six seconds to go in the four rounder. Arevalo had nothing had fell to holding for the majority of the bout as Nava put together good three punch combinations the times the he was able to slip out of Arevalo’s clinches. A barrage of punches in the last round forced referee Manuel Rincon to stop the action.
In an entertaining scrap, Guadalupe “Raton” Barrera (4-1, 1KO) struggled early but eventually dropped the game Erick Jimenez (0-2), both of Tijuana, top earn his first knock out victory in the third round of a scheduled bantamweight four. The tall and lanky Jimenez held his own for the first couple of rounds but Barrera then was able to catch him with a straight right to the temple that sent Jimenez to a knee. Seconds later he did it again. Jimenez was able to beat the count once again but only to go down a third time prompting referee Manual Rincon to stop the contest. Official time was 1:32 of the third round.
Tijuana super middleweight Rogelio Ruvalcaba (8-0, 7KOs) remained undefeated by stopping Eduardo Calderon (4-9) of Mexico City in the third round of a scheduled four.
Lightweight Ivan Zavala (1-0, 1KO) of Tijuana made his pro debut a good one as he completely battered the over matched Jose Orteño (0-1) of Rosarito and stop him in the third round of a scheduled four.
Notable faces in the crowd: Three time world champion Marco Antonio Barrera and the living legend Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. commentating for the Azteca channel, former super flyweight champion Diego “Pelucho” Morales and his younger brother flyweight Ivan “Niño Maravilla” Morales and in Nava’s corner, former three-time welterweight champion Antonio Margarito.