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Carlos Morales and Mercito Gesta to clash on November 14

Fighters Network

Carlos Morales and Mercito Gesta will square off on November 14, Golden Boy Promotions announced on Tuesday afternoon. The 10-round lightweight bout will take place at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles.

Preceding the Morales-Gesta bout will be a 10-round junior lightweight bout between Charles Huerta and Jonathan Oquendo.

Both fights will headline a “Thursday Night Fights” card that will stream live on and on Facebook Watch via the “Golden Boy Fight Night” page (10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT).

A lot is on the line between Morales and Gesta. The winner would continue down the path toward a possible world title opportunity while the other fighter will likely become a gatekeeper in a competitive division.

Morales (19-4-3, 8 knockouts), who is originally from Tulancingo, Mexico and now resides in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Highland Park, lost a close majority decision to Ryan Garcia on September 1 of last year. The 29-year-old also a unanimous decision to Alberto Machado in August of 2017.

After consulting with his team, Morales decided to move up to 135 pounds. He has since notched back-to-back victories, knocking out veteran Pedro Navarrete on May 16 and, most recently, Rosekie Cristobal on July 18.

“I’m back in the gym training very hard,” said Morales, once a top-10 junior lightweight contender. “I feel strong. I’m looking forward to getting back in the ring and exciting my fans with another knockout win.”

Gesta (32-3-2, 17 KOs), who is originally from the Philippines and now resides in San Diego, has struggled in recent fights, losing two of his last three bouts. In his most recent bout on March 21, Gesta was stopped in round nine by hard-hitting Juan ntonio Rodriguez of Mexico.

The last time the 31-year-old Gesta was in contention for a major title, he lost to Jorge Linares by unanimous decision on January 27 of last year.

Despite his recent setbacks, Gesta believes he can bounce back with a victory over Morales and march forward toward another world title opportunity.

“I’m very thankful to my Golden Boy family for always believing in me,” said Gesta. “Come November 14, I’ll be ready and in great shape. I learned a lot from my last fight. With my team, my Dad and my head trainer Marvin Somodio, I’m going to be prepared to face the talented Carlos Morales.”

Huerta (21-6, 12 KOs), who hails from the Los Angeles suburb of Paramount, defeated Recky Dulay by unanimous decision over eight rounds in his most recent bout on July 18. He has won three of his last four fights.

Oquendo (30-6, 19 KOs) is coming off a close unanimous decision loss to Lamont Roach on May 4. The Vega Alta, Puerto Rico, resident has won his previous four bouts.



Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper, BoxingScene and He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @FSalazarBoxing.




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