By Marc Livitz: Josesito Lopez may have started conservatively this evening at the Agua Caliente Casino Resort in Rancho Mirage, California in his clash with Aron Martinez, but he picked up the pace en route to a fifth round TKO win.
The orthodox matchup in the welterweight division began as a tactical bout in the early goings of the first round with a few exchanges of note. Martinez’s left jab was delivered with a severe reach and low, while Lopez kept his jab high and tight. An accidental headbutt opened a small cut on the forehead of Aron Martinez towards the final moments of the opening period. The second round was when Josesito started to close the distance until Martinez kept him at bay with his jab, which connected more than once to the head of the Riverside, California fighter.
Heavy exchanges commenced in the opening moments of round three. Martinez would find himself in a clinch when his jab landed more than once. Lopez remained aggressive and the two men fought close in to close the stanza. A hard right from Josesito opened a cut near Aron’s left eye, which was becoming more visible in the fourth. Martinez’s strategy changed a bit as he beckoned his opponent to fight like a man and do so in close quarters. Lopez had none of it and continued to pick his shots. Aron was still charging hard, yet with only four knockouts to show against his twenty-plus fight history meant that his firepower wouldn’t be enough to stop the man who had battled in years past with such ring warriors as Marcos Maidana, Saul "Canelo" Alvarez and Victor Ortiz.
In round five, a number of unanswered jabs and follow up rights from Josesito backed his adversary from Michoacan, Mexico into a corner, which allowed him set up for a left hook flush to the chin. Martinez turned his back on Lopez and momentarily retreated into the corner. Referee Jack Reiss ran across the ring to stop the fight. He informed the visibly disappointed Martinez that he had abandoned the contest by choosing to turn himself around as opposed to other possible delays to regain his composure.
Despite his protests, Aron Martinez’s record fell to (19-3-1, 4 KO’s). Meanwhile, Josesito Lopez won his second straight bout as well as doing so by stoppage since his June 2013 loss to Marcos Maidana. The victory at the 1:19 mark of round five took his win total to 32 (19 knockouts) alongside six defeats.
Co-Main Event Report
"Williams, Jr. KO’s Ornelas in The Third"
Thomas "Top Dog" Williams, Jr. knocked out ring veteran Enrique Ornelas in three rounds for the the evening’s co-main event. Ornelas went for the body early by way of a few left hooks, which allowed NABO light heavyweight champion Williams to land a few left hands of his own to Enrique’s head. After displaying his snapping right jab, the southpaw from Washington, D.C.tasted a quick 1-2-3 to the face from his Mexican opponent. The first round was a good one and not easy to score.
Ornelas showed why some of his losses were to big names in boxing such as Beibut Shumenov, Robert Stieglitz, Bernard Hopkins and Marco Antonio Rubio. The crafty veteran kept Thomas working on the offensive and the D.C. fighter scored a knockdown about halfway into the second with a fast left hook to the back of the head. Enrique quickly beat the count. Each man used a flat footed approach to the ring and stood just short of vertical.
Most of the jabbing usually made way for follow up power shots and most notably, Thomas Williams was beginning to catch Ornelas more and more coming in. The second knockdown of the bout arrived with just under twenty seconds to go. The fighter from the United States capital connected with two successive right hooks to the head of his Mexican foe and threw in a hard left for good measure.
Enrique made it just up to one knee by the count of seven before he stumbled back into the ropes, which prompted referee Raul Caiz, Jr. to wave the contest to an abrupt halt. The victory at the 2:48 mark of round three improved Thomas Williams, Jr.’s undefeated record to (17-0, 12 KO’s) and allowed him to hold on to his NABO light heavyweight title. Enrique Ornelas dropped to (34-9, 22 KO’s).
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