It was only a matter of time before Weslaco native Brandon “The Heartbreaker” Figueroa’s seemingly endless barrage of punches took effect.
After eight rounds of boxing, Yonfrez Parejo could handle no more.
Figueroa, 22, was victorious in his WBA Interim Super Bantamweight World Championship bout Saturday at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California, as he went eight rounds against Parejo before the fight was ruled a referee technical decision, ending with the Venezuelan on his stool and the Texan with his hands raised. “The Heartbreaker” is now 19-0 with 14 KOs in his career, including the last five.
“Honestly, I thought I was going to finish him in the next round. In between rounds, he was catching me pretty good, but I knew once I put the pressure again, he wasn’t going to continue,” Figueroa said in his post-fight interview, televised on Fox. “My conditioning was amazing. My legs felt strong. I felt strong all around. I knew sooner or later, he was going to fall.”
The fight between 122-pounders opened with the experienced Parejo landing the more effective blows in the first two rounds. Figueroa’s size advantage at 5 feet, 9 inches was apparent, and in the third round, it began to pay off. He started stalking his prey, walking down and pressuring the smaller Parejo into the ropes with flurries of body shots and right hands to the head.
Figueroa outlanded Parejo 27-21 during the first round. After the eighth, however, that lead increased to 235 landed for Weslaco’s own to 124 landed by his opponent. Figueroa also set a CompuBox record with 142 punches thrown in a round, finishing the fight with 845.
“It feels amazing,” he said in the ring after his fight. “This is a dream come true and I can’t wait for what’s to come next.”
The Figueroa family adds another belt to its name as Brandon joins his older brother, Omar “Panterita” Figueroa Jr., who won the WBC lightweight title in 2014. Brandon is trained by his father, Omar Sr., and worked strength and conditioning with his sister, Omayra. Both were on hand to witness the youngest Figueroa, who has been in the professional ranks for four years, have the WBA Interim Super Bantamweight World Championship wrapped around his waist.