Peñalosa nails RP’s 3rd world title
SACRAMENTO — Gerry Peñalosa became the third Filipino world champion in two months Saturday, dethroning Mexican WBO bantamweight champion Jhonny Gonzalez with a seventh-round knockout at the Arco Arena here.
Proving to detractors that he still had some fight left in him, the 35-year-old former WBC super flyweight champion put away the Mexican for good with one punch to the body late in the seventh round.
The world title was the third for the country after Florante Condes captured the IBF minimumweight crown and Nonito Donaire seized the IBF flyweight championship early last month.
The impressive 5-1 Philippine victory in Saturday’s RP-Mexico Boxing World Cup, however, was bitter-sweet after Rey “Boom Boom” Bautista lost via a first-round technical knockout to WBO super bantam champ Daniel Ponce De Leon in the main event.
Ponce De Leon, who outpointed Peñalosa last May, knocked down the previously unbeaten Bautista with a left to the face.
The Mexican was going for the kill as the Filipino lay helpless on the ropes after a second knockdown when referee Jon Schorle stopped the bout with 30 seconds left in the round.
Bautista’s loss prevented a sweep for the Filipinos in their duel with the Mexicans.
Z Gorres sealed the World Cup victory by giving the country a fourth win as he stopped ex-WBC champ Eric Ortiz with an eighth-round technical knockout
The night’s first winner was Davao City’s Diosdado Gabi, who prevailed on an eight-round unanimous decision over Jose Angel Beranza.
Michael Domingo followed it up with a six-round unanimous win over previously unbeaten Miguel Roman in their six-round tiff.
AJ “Bazooka” Banal completed the five victories, as he stopped Jorge Cardenas in the third round of their six-rounder.
“Winning the World Cup means the world to us Filipinos,” said Tagbilaran City Mayor Dan Neri Lim, who flew to this city to lead a small contingent of supporters.
Gonzalez was leading on two judges’ scorecards — the third had it even — when Peñalosa connected with a big left to the Mexican’s rib cage in the seventh.
Gonzalez made two steps backward and then crumpled to the canvas.
Gonzalez threw a total of 467 punches — 103 of which landed, while Peñalosa threw 357 punches and only 69 landed. Gonzalez connected on 31 of 248 jabs thrown, while Peñalosa scored only 17 of 162 jabs.
“I have always said that I am going to retire after this fight,” said Peñalosa. “But I am going to still fight if Ponce De Leon wants to fight me again in a rematch.”
Bautista came out of his corner looking for the big punch, possibly in an effort to stop Ponce De Leon early.