Abreu, of La Romana, Dominican Republic, outboxed Soto Karass in nearly every round as the native of Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico, pushed forward aggressively. After scoring a knockdown followed by a series of unanswered punches, the fight was stopped at 1:07 of the eighth round.
“I feel great. I’m very happy, and I thank God,” said Abreu. “I knew I would get the knockout. I wanted it, and knew I would get it. I expected a stronger Soto Karass, but he did a spectacular job anyway.”
“I was not expecting things to end this way, but unfortunately they did,” said Soto Karass. “It was a good fight, and that’s boxing: you win some and you lose some. After speaking with my family and with my manager, I’ll decide what is next. I feel proud of my work. I want people to remember me for the great fights I was in. I don’t know what I will do next, but I am satisfied either way.”
Ryan “Kingry” Garcia (12-0, 11 KOs) the exciting 130-pound rising star of Victorville, Calif., scored a third-round technical knockout victory against Pheonix, Arizona’s Cesar Valenzuela (14-6-1, 5 KOs) to defend his Junior NABF Super Featherweight Title in a scheduled eight-round affair. Garcia walked Valenzuela down from one side of the ring to the other, using a high-guard and many feints to help facilitate his aggression. In the first round, Garcia scored a counter left hook that dropped Valenzuela, which he followed with another knockdown in the third round before the fight was stopped shortly after.
“I knew I had him [Valenzuela] and that he would come down sooner or later,” said Garcia. “I feel great. He was moving a lot, but I was able to keep putting the pressure and hunt him down. I knew I would catch him; it was just a matter of time.”
San Antonio, Texas’ Hector “El Finito” Tanajara, Jr. (11-0, 4 KOs) scored a hard-earned eight-round unanimous decision victory against Jesus Serrano (17-5-2, 12 KOs) of Nogales, Mexico in a super featherweight battle. Tanajara won with scores of 80-72, 80-72, 79-73.
“I felt good, even though he was a good and tough opponent,” said Tanajara, Jr. “It was a good experience. I give myself a B+ for this fight. I could have done better all-around. My opponent made it tough because he was short. I need to work on dealing with shorter fighters.”
Topping of the ESPN3 livestream were Rafael Gramajo (9-1-2, 2 KOs) of Garden City, Kansas and German Meraz (58-45-2, 35 KOs) of Agua Prieta, Mexico, who fought to a competitive majority draw after six rounds of a super featherweight bout. After a back and forth fight in which both men landed significant body shots, one judge scored the fight 58-56 for Gramajo, which was overruled by two scores of 57-57.
Cesar Diaz (7-0, 6 KOs), the always aggressive bantamweight prospect of Palmdale, California, scored a fifth-round technical knockout victory against Tijuana, Mexico’s Pedro Melo (17-18-1, 8 KOs) in a scheduled six-round bout. Diaz wore Melo down with a constant attack to the body and head, knocking him down with a shot to the body in the third round that was not ruled a knockdown. Diaz then scored two more knockdowns in the fifth-round, the second of which forced the stoppage at 1:10 of that round.
Christopher Gonzalez (1-0) of Tucson, Arizona opened the night of boxing with a four-round unanimous decision victory against Jesus Arevalo (2-2) of Sierra Vista, Arizona in a super lightweight fight. Gonzalez, who was making his professional debut, won with scores of 40-35, 40-35 and 39-36.