PHARR — Border Wars brought the pain to Pharr Events Center Friday night as some of the Rio Grande Valley’s best up-and-coming boxers stepped inside the squared circle and delivered some post Fourth of July fireworks for those in attendance.
Mission’s Dimas “Saymore” De Leon stopped his opponent Ricardo Mena in the fifth round to stay unbeaten at 8-0 as a professional, with seven of those wins coming by way of knockout.
De Leon opened the fight feeling his opponent out, but early in the second round, “Saymore” drew blood. He cut Mena above his right eye with repeated lefts, resulting in enough damage for the referee to call the fight.
“I just wanted to go in there and show people what I got and I did,” De Leon said after picking up a win in front of Valley fight fans. “I didn’t expect this much support, but to win this fight and stay unbeaten, it’s a dream come true.”
At weigh-ins on Thursday, Mission’s Eduardo “Thunder” Garza said he would put on a show and he did just that. “Thunder” knocked Victor Rosas down in the opening round with a thunderous right hook that put Rosas on his butt. But Garza wasn’t close to done. The blows “Thunder” was landing found their home right on his opponent’s chin, causing Rosas’ mouthpiece to fall out multiple times, which led to the referee deducting two points from Rosas on the scorecards.
“I was rocking him hard, he has a chin, but that’s just how hard I was rocking him,” Garza said.
“Thunder” felt Rosas had a weak chin after the opening round knockdown, but the journey-man kept coming back for more.
“Mentally, it told me he has a weak chin, so I felt like he can get dropped again, but he just kept on coming. He’s a journey-man, those guys don’t quit,” he said.
In the end, the three judges all saw the fight in Garza’s favor as he cleaned up on the scorecards 60-51, 59-52 and 58-53.
Another Mission product, Isaac Torres (8-1-1), made his return to the ring after more than four years. On May 8, 2015, he was in a car accident that sidelined him for close to 1,600 days. But on Friday night, he had the crowd at the Pharr Events Center on its feet and roaring as he had his hand raised after picking up a unanimous decision victory over Hector Gutierrez with a 40-36 score on all three of the judge’s cards.
“I came in here to get the rounds, I wasn’t looking to knock anyone out. I needed to get the four rounds in because I’ve been out 1,600 days. I needed to just get my feet back in there and just start getting hit again. It’s been a while since I’ve been hit and it felt good to get back in there,” Torres said. “It’s like if I never left. I had my fans here supporting me, my family, my friends. It was awesome to be back in that squared circle.”
Edinburg native Jose Barron (1-0) made his pro debut Friday night and knocked his opponent down with his first punch thrown inside the ring. Leonardo Mendez from Peñitas began as the aggressor by charging forward and ripping body shots to Barron, but the Edinburg Economedes alum stepped back, gathered himself and delivered a crushing left hand to Mendez’s head to send him stumbling forward.
McAllen’s Randy Fuentes (9-8-1) earned a majority decision victory over Miguel Morales winning 40-36 on two judge’s scorecards to improve his record to 9-8-1 overall.
Mission’s Beto Flores (3-0-1) pulled out a unanimous decision win over Laredo’s Steven Garagarza as all three judges saw the fight 40-36 in favor of Flores.