Flyweight prospect Ricardo Sandoval extended his winning streak to 14 fights tonight in Indio, California, stopping Filipino veteran Raymond Tabugon in the seventh round of a scheduled 10-round main event.
The 21-year-old Sandoval (18-1, 13 KO) had a game opponent in the 28-year-old Tabugon (22-12-1, 11 KO), but was able to outgun him in every round, until ultimately he was doing the sort of damage that forced referee Eddie Hernandez to step in and call a halt to the fight at 1:43 of the seventh round.
Sandoval looked sharp and well-prepared in this fight, doing work to the head and body. Overall he out-landed Tabugon 179-81, including 148-77 in power shots, and 53 of Sandoval’s connects went to the body. He really put the beating on Tabugon in the final two rounds of action, landing 40 punches in the sixth round at a 53% connect rate, and then 33 more (57% connect rate) in the seventh before the stoppage. Tabugon threw more punches overall but didn’t land at nearly the same rate, and a lot of his work was a for-show jab that wasn’t connecting at all.
Oscar Negrete UD-10 Alberto Melian
A good win here for the 32-year-old Negrete, a Colombian now living in California, who came into this fight winless in his last three, all against Joshua Franco. Negrete went 0-1-2 in those fights and easily could’ve won any of them. Melian, 30, is a former Olympian from Argentina who fights nothing like the stereotype of “former Olympian,” and takes his second L in three fights here, dropping to 6-2 (4 KO) in defeat.
Melian is a fun fighter to watch, but you do have to wonder how much drive he’s going to have from here on. It’s very clear that he’s an undercard fighter with no world title hopes. If that’s good enough for him, great, as a fan I’ll be happy to have him on a show, he throws a lot of punches with no regard for defense.
Negrete, who challenged Rey Vargas for a 122-pound title in 2017, is right toward the back end of the top 10 here, not far out. I wouldn’t have him in right now, but he’s right around that level at 118.
Sulem Urbina UD-6 Noemi Bosques
Wasn’t particularly competitive, as Urbina (12-0, 2 KO) largely dominated and took shutout scores of 60-54 on all three cards, but it was an OK fight to watch. Bosques (12-15-3, 2 KO) gave a good effort and threw a lot of punches, and Urbina threw plenty and landed way more. Urbina did have Bosques hurt a bit in the fourth, and with three-minute rounds might’ve gotten her out there, but they were two-minute rounds, so she didn’t.
Leonardo Baez UD-8 Moises Flores
A decent action fight between the junior featherweights, with Baez (18-2, 9 KO) sweeping the cards, 80-72 across the board. The veteran Flores (25-3, 17 KO) looked a little slow with his hands early, and got visibly tired around the fifth or sixth round, but so did Baez, which meant that despite the fast early pace, they wound up going the distance.
Baez landed shots that would’ve probably dropped or even stopped lesser opposition, but Flores is a pretty tough dude, and this was a fight that makes it look like the 24-year-old Baez might really be putting something together, and has a chance to become a legitimate contender after last year’s upset of the aforementioned Melian.