Angel Acosta stops Janel Rivera in one, Thursday night
Flyweight contender Angel Acosta stopped Janel Rivera in the opening round, late Thursday night, at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, in Indio, California.
Acosta, who resides in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and now trains in Indio with Joel Diaz, improves to 23-3, 22 knockouts.
Thursday marked Acosta’s first fight since his fourth round stoppage loss to WBO titleholder and Ring Magazine No. 1-ranked flyweight Junto Nakatani on September 10.
The bout against Rivera was meant as a stay-busy fight but Acosta was the aggressor from the start. After a clinch against the ropes, Acosta stepped back and connected a left hook to the head, staggering Rivera. Acosta followed Rivera into a corner where he connected a barrage of punches. Moments later, a right cross staggered Rivera again, prompting Acosta to land more at will, leading to referee Raul Caiz Jr. to stop the bout at 1:19.
The 31-year-old Acosta, who was also a WBO junior flyweight titleholder, is confident he can still win a world title at 112 pounds.
“I’m waiting for an opportunity to come my way,” said Acosta, who is co-promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and Cotto Promotions. “I’m hoping for an opportunity to fight for a world title. I’m one of the best flyweights out there. I would like to fight the winner of the [WBC flyweight titleholder] Julio Cesar Martinez-McWilliams Arroyo fight [on June 25].”
Rivera, who resides in Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, drops to 18-9-3, 11 KOs. He has now lost his last six fights.
In the co-feature, featherweight Victor Morales, of Portland, Oregon, scored two knockdowns en route to a one-sided decision win over Alberto Torres.
All three judges scored the bout 100-88 in favor of Morales, who improves to 16-0-1, 8 KOs.
Morales, who was coming off a draw against Rudy Garcia in his most recent bout, on December 18, overcame a rough start early on as the southpaw Torres momentarily stunned him with a left hand in the second round. It was Morales the rest of the way as he effectively countered Torres with two and three-punch combinations to the head and body.
Midway through the fifth round, Morales scored a knockdown but it looked as though Torres tripped over Morales’ feet and lost his balance. Torres continued to be game but only landed one punch at a time and did not follow up when he had the opportunity to do so.
An accidental clash of heads early in the ninth round opened a cut over Morales’ right eye but did not appear to affect him. Morales sealed the victory by dropping Torres with a barrage of punches in the 10th round.
Torres, who resides in Sacramento, California, drops to 11-5-3, 4 KOs and has lost his last four bouts.
In featherweight action, Rudy Garcia defeated gatekeeper Diuhl Olguin (15-23-5, 10 KOs), of Guadalajara, Mexico, by unanimous decision. Scores were 79-73 twice and 80-72 in favor of Garcia, who resides in Los Angeles and improves to 13-0-1, 2 KOs.
Welterweight Jimmy Brenes (2-0, 1 KO), of Nicaragua, won by majority decision over Los Angeles’ Hector Perez (0-1-1). One judge scored the bout 38-38, while the other two judges scored the bout 40-36 in favor of Brenes.
In the opening bout of the Golden Boy card, junior middleweight Eric Tudor defeated Donte Stubbs (6-5, 2 KOs), of nearby Riverside, by unanimous decision. All three judges scored the bout 60-54 in favor of Tudor, who improves to 4-0, 3 KOs.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @FSalazarBoxing.
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