La Gente Boxing Show features memorable reunion plus 13 hotly contested matches

October 15, 2016 No Comments
Pedro Arenas (second from the left) celebrates his victory with coaches and teammates from the United Boxing & Fitness Gym of Chula Vista.

At Saturday’s show in Brawley, it was Pedro Arenas (second from the left) celebrating his victory with his coach and teammates from the United Boxing & Fitness Gym in Chula Vista. All photos: Jim Wyatt

On Saturday afternoon, October 15, 2016, the latest La Gente Boxing Club show was held at the American Citizens Club Park in Brawley, Calif. It featured local boxers from Imperial Valley and Mexicali, plus some traveling teams from Garden Grove and San Diego, Calif. plus teams from San Luis and Phoenix, Arizona. In all, 16 boxing clubs came to show their support of a boxing club that has been servicing the Brawley community since 1991. Under the leadership of Pablo Cortez of La Gente Boxing, 13 extremely competitive matches took place.

What a great match to start off your show -the Nico Marchan (black trunks) versus Albert Trujillo (blue trunks).

What a great match to begin Saturday’s show – Nico Marchan from the House of Boxing (black trunks) went toe-to-toe with Alberto Trujillo from the Alliance Training Center (blue trunks).

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Bout #1: At the end of this great match it was Nico Marchan (r) being awarded the hard fought victory.

Bout #1: At the end of this great match, it was Nico Marchan (r) being awarded the hard earned victory.

In Bout #1, it was (24-year-old, 122.8 pound) Nico Marchan of the House of Boxing, Paradise Hills, San Diego, Calif. going up against (24-year-old, 127.4 pounds) Alberto Trujillo of the Alliance Training Center, Chula Vista, Calif. With the early rounds being close, it all came down to which of the boxers could be the finisher. Which boxer had the stamina to close out the bout and land the most telling blows in the final three minutes. And that’s just what Marchan did to earn the victory. Not to pump up Trujillo, but for someone who only recently got out of the service, the U. S. Navy, he fought exceptionally well.

Bout #2 it was 9-year-old David Vera (71.4 pounds) of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Dept. Boxing Program, Phoenix, Arizona going up against 10-year-old Brandon "Canelito" Anguiano (70.6 pounds) of the Baja Boxing Club, Calexico, Calif.

Bout #2 was a dandy featuring David Vera (r) of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Dept. Boxing Program, Phoenix, Arizona going up against Brandon “Canelito” Anguiano (l) from the Baja Boxing Club, Calexico, Calif.

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At the conclusion of Bout #2, we see referee Rick Ley raising the arm of the victorious

(top) At the conclusion of Bout #2, we had the combatants David Vera (l) and Brandon Anguiano (r) pose for one last photo. Photos: Jim Wyatt

In Bout #2 it was 9-year-old David Vera (71.4 pounds) of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Dept. Boxing Program, Phoenix, Arizona going up against 10-year-old Brandon “Canelito” Anguiano (70.6 pounds) of the Baja Boxing Club, Calexico, Calif. In this one, Vera looked fresher and simply outworked Anguiano who prior to the fight mentioned he had just competed and won a boxing match in Mexicali – on Friday.

At times Bout #3 between Julius Ballo of the Bomber Squad Academy, El Cajon, Calif. (97.2 pounds, experience level: 49 wins, 8 losses) going up against 13-year-old Thomas Valero (96 pounds, also an Open fighter) from the Maricopa County Sheriff's Department's Boxing Programresembled a wrestling match.

At times Bout #3 between Julius Ballo (red trunks) of the Bomber Squad Academy, El Cajon, Calif. and Thomas Valerio (blue trunks) from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department’s Boxing Program resembled a wrestling match.

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At the conclusion of their match, we see Julius Ballo (r) proudly showing us his winning plaque.

At the conclusion of their match, Julius Ballo (r), proudly shows off his winning plaque which will have special meaning since it signifies his 50th USA Amateur Boxing victory. Thomas Valerio (l) will be back and for sure he’ll be a lot tougher in their return match.

In Bout #3 it was 13-year-old Julius Ballo of the Bomber Squad Academy, El Cajon, Calif. (97.2 pounds, experience level: 49 wins, 8 losses) going up against 13-year-old Thomas Valerio (96 pounds, also an Open fighter) from the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department’s Boxing Program in Phoenix. With his elusive skills, Ballo was able to negate almost every Valero attempt to mount an offense. The axiom of hit but don’t get hit was done to perfection. At the conclusion of Bout #3, we see Julius Ballo (r), a multiple time National Champion having his arm raised in victory after he defeated the game Thomas Valerio (l).

In severe pain from the blow he received to his left arm, Jacob Valenzuela is forced to

Hurting from the blow received on his left arm, Jacob Valenzuela of Heber Boxing awaits the fight doctor’s determination as to his ability to continue in his bout versus the tough Pedro Arenas of United Boxing & Fitness Gym.

Unable to continue, Jacob Valenzuela

Unable to continue, Jacob Valenzuela (r) looks over at his opponent Pedro Arenas as referee Hondo Fontane raises his arm in victory.

Bout #4 featured a terrific scrap between the much shorter Jacob Valenzuela (15-years-old, 156 lbs.) an unattached, nonstop brawler going up against 13-year-old Pedro Arenas (1-0, six foot tall, 153 pounds) from the United Boxing & Fitness Gym, Chula Vista, Calif. With both boxers throwing heavy blows, Arenas using his reach advantage and Valenzuela constantly on the attack, you always had this feeling something dramatic was about to happen. Then, early in round three, Arenas banged Valenzuela in the arm, just above the elbow. After Dr. Arturo Garcia Iniguez, the show’s doctor, had a look at the injury, he immediately stopped the bout and Arenas was awarded the TKO victory.

At the conclusion of Bout #5, it was Alfredo Martinez

At the conclusion of Bout #5, we see referee Hondo Fontane raising the arm of the victorious Alfredo Martinez (r) who received the decision victory over the disappointed Armando Chavez (l). All photos: Jim Wyatt

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After the awards presentation, boxers Alfredo Martinez (r) and Armando Chavez graciously pose for one last photo.

In Bout #5 it was 15-year-old Alfredo Martinez (129 pounds, in the Open Category) from the Garden Grove Boxing Club coming away with the victory over 16-year-old Armando Chavez (127 pounds, experience: 50 bouts) from Miller’s Boxing Gym in Phoenix. This was one of those matches where the boxing scribe had the wrong side. What Chavez did was wait for Martinez to throw his softer lead punches, which often missed their mark, and then Chavez would counter. The counter punching was masterful and you would think the judges would appreciate that fact and notice how Chavez was landing more punches than Martinez.

Bout #6 was another match that was fought at lightning speed.

Bout #6, between Julio Avila (red gloves) and Johnathan Gaspar (blue gloves) was another bout that was fought at a frightening pace with punches coming from every angle, every direction.

Then it happened, Johnathan Gaspar suddenly went all out and rushed Julio Avila and

Then it happened, Johnathan Gaspar rushed Julio Avila and landed multiple combinations to his head to force veteran referee Rick Ley to stop the bout and issue Avila an 8-count. In the end, it was Johnathan Gaspar in his camouflage trunks being awarded the unanimous decision victory.

After stopping to se the fight doctor, the combatants in Bout #6, the winner Johnathan Gaspar and his opponent Julio Avila pose for one last phot with the fight doctor Arturo Garcia.

After stopping to see the fight doctor, Dr. Arturo Garcia, the combatants in Bout #6, the winner Johnathan Gaspar (c) and his opponent Julio Avila (l) posed for one last photo.

Bout #6 was another thriller. In this one, it was Johnathan Gaspar (17-years-old, 137 pounds) from Garden Grove Boxing out battling Julio Avila (19-years-old, 138 pounds) from the San Luis PAL in San Luis, Arizona. The punches stats were staggering as the two gents never let up hitting each other from every angle imaginable.

After being clobbered left and right, not only did the referee stopped the bout, Joel Marin's corner threw in the towel.

After being clobbered left and right, not only did the referee stop the bout, Joel Marin’s corner was in the midst of throwing in the towel.

Whatever you do, don't get in the ring with this gentleman.

Remember his name, Saul Castro. Whatever you do, think twice before getting in the ring with this gentleman. After his victory over Joel “The Bull” Marin, we had the boxers stand side-by-side to show you how big he is.

In Bout #7  they had 26-year-old Saul Castro, an Unattached boxer, who weighed in at 298 pounds facing 17-year-old Joel “The Bull” Marin (236 lbs) from the Baja Boxing Club, Calexico, Calif. Marin’s experience: 6 bouts, all decisive victories plus one by knockout. His last win was in Tijuana at the recent, 2016 Bi-National Tournament. However, nothing could have prepared the young Mr. Marin for the taller, older, heavier and more experienced Saul Castro. When you see Mr. Castro in action, you too will be of the opinion it won’t be long before we’ll be seeing this tough guy in the professional ranks. Did we mention, he’s big, strong and his punches come at you like a wrecking ball.

at the conclusion of the Jose Cordero versus Rene Martinez (left) bout, the boxers await the judges decision.

At the conclusion of the Jose Cordero (r) versus Rene Martinez (l) bout, Bout #8, we see the boxers awaiting the judges’ decision.

Despite losing to Jose Cordero, we see Rene martinez showing good sportsmanship by clapping for his opponent Jose Cordero.

Despite his loss to Cordero, Rene Martinez (l) shows good sportsmanship and claps for his opponent after the decision was announced.

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Bout #8, the bout between 17-year-old Jose Cordero (132 lbs.) from the San Luis PAL, San Luis, Arizona and 16-year-old Rene Martinez (133 lbs.) from La Familia Boxing, El Centro, Calif. was another match that was almost too close to call. After matching each other’s output in rounds one and two, Cordero pulled out all the stops in round three to secure the victory.

This is when everything started to go downhill for Martin Mota.

This is when everything started to go downhill for Martin Mota (red trunks). Alejandro Casarez (blue trunks) went on the attack like a charging lion.

At first, Mota was issued an 8-count.

At first, referee Hondo Fontane issued Martin Mota an 8-count. It was just a brief respite from the all-out pressure which Casarez continued to exert on Mr. Mota.

(l to r) Martin Mota, presenter Beyonce Garcia and the victorious Alejandro Casarez.

(l to r) Martin Mota, presenter Beyonce Garcia and the victorious Alejandro Casarez.

Early on in Bout #9, Martin Mota (135.6 lbs.) from the San Luis PAL Boxing Club, San Luis, Arizona was very much in the contest until things went sour after Alejandro Casarez (132 pounds) from Calexico Boxing ClubCalexico, Calif. got in Mota’s grill and never let up until the referee stopped the bout to issue Mota an 8-count. From that point on, Casarez’s confidence grew and he was in the driver’s seat.

In Bout #10, it was Felipe Ruvalcaba of Garden Grove Boxing versus David gates of the Alliance Training Center.

In Bout #10, it was Felipe Ruvalcaba of Garden Grove Boxing (r) landing these lethal left hooks against David Gates of the Alliance Training Center.

Between rounds it was Felipe Ruvalcaba and his coach Henry Villegas

Like Bill Belichick and Tom Brady of the Patriots, Felipe Ruvalcaba and his coach Henry Villegas of Garden Grove Boxing talked strategy in their attempt to beat the always tough David Gates and his coach Sergio Melendrez.

The talent was on display as these two battled.

The talent was on display as these two polished, battle-tested athletes went at it. It was the stiff jabs versus the sneaky left hooks which at times came up at Gates as if they were left uppercuts. This was truly a great match-up.

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After their exciting match, they were joined by former boxing great Ronald Gray who once had the opportunity to fight Shane Mosely. Gray, Greg Diaz and Henry Villegas were once stablemates at the gym in Brawley, Calif.

After their exciting match, the boxers were joined by former boxing standout Ronald Gray (c) who in his prime had an opportunity to battle the likes of Sugar Shane Mosely. Gray, coaches Greg Diaz and Henry Villegas were once stablemates at the gym in Brawley. Saturday, they had time to reminisce.

(left to right) coach Henry Villegas

(l to r) Coach Henry Villegas from Garden Grove Boxing, boxer Alfredo Martinez and coach Greg Diaz from the House of Boxing in San Diego.

In Bout #10 it was 20-year-old David Gates (155.6 pounds) from the Alliance Training Center, Chula Vista, Calif. going up against 21-year-old Felipe Ruvalcaba of Calexico Boxing, Calexico, Calif. (149 pounds). This was another classic matchup where you had Gates standing tall in the saddle, using his jab and punching straight as an arrow, while the more elusive Ruvalcaba preferred to double up on his left hooks and punch from every angle imaginable. In the end, the close decision went to the more flamboyant Mr. Ruvalcaba.

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For most of the afternoon, the host gym had the popular Beyonce Garcia presenting the awards.

For most of the afternoon, the host gym had the popular “Beyonce” Garcia (center) presenting the awards to the competitors.

Bout #11 featured the ladies, 18-year-old Destiny Gutierrez (119 lbs., red gloves) from the host gym La Gente Boxing, Brawley, Calif. going up against the much taller, 20-year-old Paulina Pena (113.8 lbs., blue gloves) from the Alliance Training Center, Chula Vista, Calif. In just her second bout, Pena was doing very well by landing punch after punch when she maintained the proper distance to benefit from her reach advantage. Once Gutierrez got in close, she’d work over the body and rack up her points. In the end, the judges went with Pena since her punches looked to have more power behind them.

At the conclusion of Bout #12, the referee raises te arm of the victorious Esau Valerio.

At the conclusion of Bout #12, referee Andrew Moreno raises the arm of the victorious Esau Valerio (left).

After all the fuss, boxers Jesus Bogorquez (l) and Esau Valerio (r) pose for one last photo.

After their battle in the ring, boxers Jesus Bojorquez (l) and Esau Valerio (r) pose for one last photo.

In Bout #12 it was 10-year-old  Jesus Bojorquez (69 lbs.) from the San Luis PAL, San Luis, Arizona taking on 8-year-old Esau Valerio from the Maricopa County Sheriff Department’s Boxing Program (71 pounds). In the developing darkness, it was difficult to tell who was landing the more effective punches but with Valerio being the busier of the two and more elusive, the judges awarded him the decision.

At the conclusion of Bout #13, the two combatants Damein Vargas (r) and Ivan Verdin Jauregy await the judges' decision.

At the conclusion of Bout #13, the two combatants Damein Vargas (r) and Ivan Verdin Jauregy (l) await the judges’ decision.

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After his big win, Damien Vargas poses for a photo with his devoted coach, Valenzuela.

After his big win, Damien “Ferocious” Vargas poses for a photo with his devoted coach, Mario Valenzuela.

In Bout #13 it was 15-year-old Damein Vargas (109 pounds) of Devil Dogs Boxing, Calexico, Calif. coming away with the victory over 15-year-old Ivan Verdin Jauregy from the Guerrero’s Boxing Club, Heber, Calif. (115 pounds). By the time this bout got started the sun had set and the lack of lighting made the bout difficult to score. All you could see were the two boxers slugging it out and going nonstop. Whether every punch landed that could be debated. With Vargas wearing the red gloves, you could argue his gloves were more visible than the dark blue worn by Jauregy. In the end, the judges had Vargas ahead on the scorecards.

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