Undefeated Jr. Welterweight prospect Luis Feliciano scored a workmanlike ten round unanimous decision over previously undefeated Genaro Gomez to win the vacant North American Boxing Federation (NABF) Jr. Welterweight championship on Thursday night at the Fantasy Springs Resort and Casino in Indio, CA. Feliciano controlled the action from the opening bell and was particularly effective in establishing an attack the body of Gomez that he made a focal point of his offense throughout the fight. It was this consistency and overall activity throughout that allowed Feliciano to earn a convincing decision victory. Official scores were: 98-92 (On two scorecards), and 99-91 in favor of Feliciano. Luis Feliciano advances to 13-0, with 8 Knockouts. Genaro Gomez falls to 9-1, with 6 Knockouts.
Also on this card:
In the Welterweight division, undefeated prospect Blair Cobbs scored an impressive come from behind ninth round knockout over previously undefeated Steve Vilalobos. The early rounds of this fight appeared to be dictated by Cobbs’ quickness and ability to get his punches off first. This changed in round six when Vilalobos connected with a flush right hand to the jaw of Cobbs when Cobbs was against the ropes. The shot staggered Cobbs and another right hand as part of a combination sent Cobbs down hard on the canvas. Although Cobbs was clearly hurt, he was able to pull himself together and survive the round. In round seven, Cobbs was able to regain control of the fight and began breaking Vilalobos down with an attack to the body and head. An uppercut from Cobbs put an end to matters in round nine sending Vilalobos down for the count. Official time of the stoppage was 1:20 of round nine. Blair Cobbs advances to 12-0-1, with 8 Knockouts.Steve Vilalobos falls to 11-1-1, with 9 Knockouts.
In the Middleweight division, undefeated Richard Acevedo fought to a controversial six round draw with veteran Jose Rivera. Despite Rivera forcing the action and outworking Acevedo over the course of the fight, the judges were split as to who they felt won the bout with the third and deciding judge rendering an even scorecard. Official scores were 59-55 (Split on two scorecards) and 57-57. Richard Acevedo advances to 5-0-1, with 5 Knockouts. Jose Rivera advances to 8-4-1, with 5 Knockouts.
Also in the Middleweight division, undefeated Raul Curiel scored a sixth round stoppage of Alphonso Black. Curiel consistently forced the action throughout the fight and was able to pressure Black against the ropes. Although the veteran Black was able to hold his own throughout, the accumulation of punishment he had sustained forced a stoppage early in round six. Official time of the stoppage was :51 of round six Raul Curiel advances to 7-0, with 5 Knockouts. Alphonso Black falls to 8-7-1, with 4 Knockouts.
Lightweight Nicholas Sullivan successfully made his professional debut in the opening bout of this card by scoring a four round unanimous decision over Jose Palacios. Although the fight was at times sloppy, Sullivan’s combination punching and overall activity allowed him to score his first victory as a professional. Official scores were 39-37, and 40-36 (On two scorecards) all in favor of Sullivan. Nicholas Sullivan advances to 1-0, with 0 Knockouts. Jose Palacios falls to 1-4, with 1 Knockout.
This card, which was featured on Golden Boy Promotions Thursday Night Fights series on Facebook Watch featured rising prospects and fighters who are just starting their professional careers. While the fighters featured on this card are all at varying stages of their respective development, we did see that the goal is not to pad the records of these boxers, but to provide tests that will only serve the fighters well in the future as they continue to progress. A clear example of this was the fight between Blair Cobbs and Steve Vilalobos. Although Vilalobos came out on the losing end of the fight, he will likely get an opportunity in the future against another prospect after providing Blair Cobbs with a legitimate scare early in his career. Cobbs meanwhile was able to answer some questions that are ultimately asked of all prospects. What happens when they get hurt and can they come off the canvas to win a fight.
As the monthly series continues to showcase some of the up and coming talent in Golden Boy Promotions’ stable, we are likely to see similar bouts take place in terms of matchmaking. Not only does it serve the purpose of helping young fighters develop in a way that will benefit them long-term, but from a promotional standpoint, series like this also serve as a platform for promoters to develop stars, which is, has, and always will be the lifeblood of the sport of Boxing. It is crucial not just for the fighters, not just promoters, but for the sport overall that series like this exists and that fans of Boxing support it.
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