Pro Boxing at Las Pulgas competes with the Xolos

Prior to their Super Bantamweight State Title fight, Edivaldo Ortega (R) and Francisco Pina (C) posed for a photo in the center of the ring. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Prior to their Super Bantamweight State Title fight, Edivaldo Ortega (r) and Francisco Pina (c) posed center ring for a photo. Photo: Jim Wyatt

With so much going on in Tijuana plus soccer fever at its highest pitch now that the newly arrived pro team, Xolos has made it to the finals, it was truly remarkable to see that Salon Las Pulgas was packed on a Wednesday evening for yet another Mayen Promotions boxing show.


At least “Dude” has some class. Dude, a Mexican hairless, owned by Rick Roman had his photo taken in a Hawaiian shirt at the Conejo Creek dog park in Thousand Oaks.

We hope we’re not offending anyone but the Xolos’ Mexican hairless, the team’s new mascot, sure is ugly. Regardless, each year the Westminister Kennel Club keeps accepting these new breeds which in turn validates their value to society. Along comes Tijuana’s newest professional sports team and they too want to stand out in a crowd. So, what do they do? They pick one of the rarest creatures to be their mascot. A dog that gives most people the creeps.

In Wednesday evening’s Main Event at Las Pulgas, it was Edivaldo “El Indio” Ortega (15-0-1, 7 KOs) of Tijuana taking a 10 round unanimous decision from Ensenada, Mexico’s Francisco Piña (5-5-4, 2 KOs) to win the Baja California State Super Bantamweight title.

For the first five rounds, this was a heated contest as the two took turns pummeling each other. As the bout entered the later rounds, it appeared Pina’s confidence started to wane. From that point, Pina couldn’t mount what you’d call a serious offensive. To his credit, he did take whatever came his way and never appeared to be in serious trouble.

Considered by many to be one of Tijuana’s most promising young talents, Ortega had his problems in this contest and the outing before, against Enrique Quevedo.

First, he had trouble making weight. His weigh-in was delayed for well over an hour after he showed up 3½ pounds overweight. Also, he didn’t dominate Pina as expected. Insiders claim Ortega is getting impatient and wants to make some real money. He could do that if he were fighting in the states against the top tier fighters. But Ortega’s handlers still haven’t arranged to get him his visa.

Like the crowd, the judges had Ortega winning in a landslide. Judge Lorena Gaxiola scored the bout 99-91, while judges Sergio Lechuga and Omar Ortiz gave Ortega every round scoring it 100-90.

Edivaldo Ortega (L) is shown exchanging blows with Francisco Pina (R).

Edivaldo Ortega (R) has his arm raised in victory by referee Juan Jose Ramirez defeating Francisco Pina to win the Baja California Super Bantamweight Title. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Edivaldo Ortega (L) is shown landing a left uppercut to the head of Francisco Pina.

Francisco Pina (L) unloads his own flurry of punches on Edivaldo Ortega (R) Wednesday, November 28, 2012 at the Las Pulgas Concert Hall in Tijuana’s Downtown.

At the conclusion of his bout, Francisco Pina poses for photos.

In the evening’s Co-main event, Bout #6, Tijuana strawweight Julio Cesar “Gatito” Felix (18-4, 7 KOs) looked masterful against the usually tough Noe Medina (13-2) of Mexico City.

Things were a lot different back on June 2 of this year, when Felix couldn’t even get out of the first round. On that sorry night he challenged Moises Fuentes for the WBO Strawweight World Title and became the victim of three well placed body shots.

In Wednesday’s contest, his first fight back from that dramatic first round TKO loss, Felix, started slow and may have even lost round one. Then, from the second round on, you knew who held the reigns. With each of their exchanges, Felix made certain he was ahead on the punch stats and often punctuated each round with a late flurry. By Round #7, Medina had been reduced to throwing mere short arm punches and working the midsection.

All three judges scored the bout 79-73 in favor of Felix.

After defeating Noe Medina, Julio Cesar Felix (L) has his arm raised in victory by referee Juan Morales Lee at Salon Las Pulgas Night in Downtown Tijuana. Photo: J. Wyatt

Here we see Julio Cesar Felix (L) landing a right uppercut flush on Medina’s nose.

At times, Medina (L) worked over Felix’s midsection.

After his grueling battle with Julio Cesar Felix, Noe Medina takes time for a photo with his coach. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Out of respect, Julio Cesar Felix (R) and Noe Medina (L) embrace at the conclusion of their grueling eight rounds. Photo: Jim Wyatt

On the undercard:

In the show’s opener, Bout #1, it was Angel Rodriguez (4-0, 2 KOs) of Tijuana (a resident of six months) by way of Irapi, Sucre, Venezuela, scoring his second TKO victory. The victim this time was Juan Antonio “Panadero” Rivera (0-1) of Mexicali, B. C., Mexico.

With the confidence of a world champion, Rodriguez, with his hands down at his side, slipped punches and flailed away at Rivera. Left hook, right cross, over hand right, it didn’t matter. His punches hardly ever missed their target. At 2:03 of the first round, a big, overhand right ended Rivera’s night.

In Bout #1, it was Angel Rodriguez (C) over Juan Antonio Rivera.

In Bout #2, it was Tijuana middleweight Antonio Gutierrez (7-0-1, 5 KOs) getting the best of Israel “The Beast” Perez of Tecate, B. C., Mexico.

With Gutierrez being much taller and Perez making his pro-debut, it didn’t take long before the crowd started pulling for the underdog. In the first round, that experience edge wasn’t noticeable as the two pugilist gave a good account of themselves. Even though both were extremely active right through Round three, it appeared Gutierrez’s ring generalship and the occasional two and three punch combinations would win over the judges.

In Round four, Perez’s wide shots became even wider, while Gutierrez’s punches were straighter and had sonar. Getting hit quite regular didn’t seem to phase Perez as his chin was like granite.

In the closing minute, Perez flung this desperation haymaker shot that glazed Gutierrez’s chin as he was backing up. By this time, the crowd not only appreciated Perez’s staying power, but that desperation attempt for a late knockout so charmed the crowd.

All three judges, Lorena Gaxiola, Joselyn Ortiz and Diana De La Mora, had Gutierrez winning every round.

In Bout #2, it was big man, Antonio Gutierrez of Tijuana, B. C., Mexico versus the shorter man Israel Perez of Tecate, B. C., Mexico. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Antonio Gutierrez has additional photos taken after his defeat of Israel Perez. Photo: J. Wyatt

Israel Perez and his corner pose for a photo after his tough defeat to Antonio Gutierrez.

Bout #3 between Jose Galvez (1-0) and Ray Galindo making his debut, was a crowd pleaser. There was absolutely no let up. Galindo, a southpaw, started the pummeling off early and then back came the righty, Galvez. At any moment you figured the referee would be stepping in to at least issue an eight count.

By Round #2, Galvez had figured out his opponent and landed a straight right hand that sent Galindo to the canvas. After Galindo got back up, Galvez was all over him like bees on their honey.  After an accumulation of blows, Galindo went down for the second time, his final time.

Ray Galindo (R) and his coach pose for a photo after their loss to Jose Galvez.

Jose Galvez (L) has his arm raised in victory after defeating Ray Galindo in Bout #3.

Bout #4 featured a match-up between two popular Tijuana light welterweights, Daniel Nava (4-0-1, 2 KOs) and Erick Martinez who was making his pro debut.

What a way to begin your career – they have you facing Jackie Nava’s younger cousin, someone who has been preordained to be a champion and of course this Nava has his own cheering section. Unbeknownst to you, your cheering section is quite formidable and holds their own against the competition.

So with the competition in the ring and the competition in the stands, this one surprised everyone and ended in a draw.  Two judges scored the bout even 38-38 while the third had it 39-38 for Nava.

When a tie is almost as good as a win. On Wednesday night, Erick Martinez (L), made his pro debut. His opponent was the more experienced and better known Daniel Nava (R).

In Bout #5, it was Luis “Pantera” Nery (4-0, 1 KO) continuing his domination over Tijuana’s best  bantamweights. His latest victim was the previously unbeaten and much taller Joan “Amarillo” Sandoval (1-1-1, 1 KO), also of Tijuana.

With Sandoval continuing to fire away with his dynamite like blasts, it was a miracle how the elusive Nery was able to sidestep most or duck under the powerful blows. Seemingly in control throughout, he darted right and then left staying out of range. Meanwhile Sandoval seemed content to work over Nery’s midsection in hopes that his hands would drop. The judges gave Nery an unanimous decision 40-36 and 39-37 twice.

Luis Nery (L) has his arm raised in victory after defeating Joan Sandoval in Bout #5 at Salon Las Pulgas in Tijuana’s downtown. All photos: Jim Wyatt

At the conclusion of Bout #5, Joan Sandoval (L) poses for a photo with his coach.

After Bout #8, San Diego light welterweight Israel “Mr. KO” Arellano (5-0, 4 KOs) remains unbeaten but he did have his KO streak broken. Tijuana’s Adan “Ojitos” Gamboa (1-15) proved to be one tough hombre. You can forget about his record, when Gamboa sets his mind to doing something, that’s just what he’s going to do.

After Gamboa spent the majority of Wednesday night’s four rounder being worked over as if he were a punching bag, he kept on moving just like that Energizer Bunny.

The formidable Adan Gamboa (C) and his support group pose for photo before walking out to the ring to meet his opponent for the evening, Israel Arellano in Bout #8. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Following Adan Gamboa to the ring is his opponent Israel Arellano (C) with his supporting cast (l to r), co-manager Lou Messina, coach Emilio Bojorquez, boxer Israel Arellano, co-manager Saul Rios, and trainers Carlos Barragan Jr. and Sr.

Getting full extension into this overhand right is Israel Arellano (L).

Here we see Israel Arellano (L) unloading a left hook to the side of Adan Gamboa’s head. The streaming blood came from Arellano’s nose as Gamboa proved to be one tough hombre.

Despite the constant pummeling, Adan Gamboa (R) hung in there to deliver his own punishment on Israel Arellano.

At the conclusion of their contest, Israel Arellano went over to Adan Gamboa’s corner to congratulate Gamboa on his amazing performance. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Israel Arellano has his arm raised in victory by referee Juan Jose Ramirez after defeating Adan Gamboa in Bout #8. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Bout #9 After getting knocked down in the first round, bantamweight Heriberto “Tremendo” Delgado (3-0, 1 KO) of Tijuana survived that earlier mishap plus the in-your-face style of Kevin Moreno (0-1) to land his own KO blow, a straight right hand in the third to put his opponent down for good. Official time was 2:27.

In Bout #9, the boxers took turns knocking each other down. In the end it was Heriberto Delgado (L rear) knocking out Kevin Moreno, still down on the canvas. Photo: Jim Wyatt

Heriberto Delgado gets a ride on his mate’s shoulders after the victory.

After his victory Heriberto Delgado (R) has his arm raised in victory by referee Juan Jose Ramirez. Photos: Jim Wyatt

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