ESPN Friday Night Fights Results: Perez Upsets Santana, Burgos Squeaks By Cruz


By: William Holmes

ESPN Friday Night Fights is known for delivering solid fights between up and coming prospects and grizzled tough veterans. The opening bout of tonight’s telecast did not disappoint. Manny Perez came into this fight tonight as the underdog, but used a steady attack of hooks and jabs to the body to score the upset. Santana was the bigger fighter, and the quicker fighter, but was unable to keep up with the pace and work rate of Manny Perez. The last round was a must watch, and they both left everything in the ring.

Juan Carlos Burgos and Cristobal Cruz faced off in the main event of Friday Night Fights. It wasn’t the prettiest of fights, and featured two knockdowns. Burgos knocked Cruz down in the sixth round and controlled the early part of the fight. Cruz was able to fight his way back into the fight and knocked Burgos down in the ninth round. Cruz applied the pressure throughout the fight, but looked foolish in the early rounds with wild hooks as he came forward. It was a close fight to score, but Burgos was able to squeak out the victory in a somewhat controversial decision, as one Judge unexplainably scored it 98-90.

Round by round results are as follows:
Edgar Santana (26-3) vs. Manny Perez (16-7-1); Junior Welterweight;

Round 1:

Santana and Perez come out to the center of the ring and Santana looks to be the clearly bigger fighter. Santana lands an early quick jab, and Perez answers with a jab to the body. Santana connects with a good right cross. They both exchange and land jabs, and Santana comes back and lands two more jabs. Santana lands a flush jab. Santana easily dodges a cross from Perez. Perez comes forward behind his jab, but none are landing flush. Santana lands a good counter jab. Santana misses with a hard right cross. Both fighters exchange and land jabs at the same time, and Santana follows with a right hand to the body. Santana easily dodges a jab from Perez. Perez bangs an uppercut that the guard of Perez. Perez lands two hooks to the body near the end of the round. Close round, 10-9 Santana.

Round 2:

Santana flicks out and misses three jabs. Santana dodges out of the way of a right hook but is not able to move out of the way of a hook to the body. Santana dodges out of the way of a left hook from Perez. Santana lands a good jab, and Perez answers with a jab of his own. Perez lands a low blow, and the referee momentarily stops the fight. Santana is getting hit a little more often this round. Santana partially lands a right hook, but lands two solid hooks to the body of Perez. Perez partially lands a quick combination near the corner. Perez lands another jab. Perez lunges forward and stabs a jab. Perez is starting to find his range and is landing much more efficiently this round. Perez stabs another jab t othe body of Santana. 10-9 round for Perez.

Round 3:

Santana lands an early right hand upstairs. Perez lands another lunging jab and keeps his guard up during a Santana combination. Perez landing solid combinations by the ropes, attacking both the body and head. Perez is stalking Perez , and lands another good jab to the body, and sneeks a right hand past the guard of Santana. Santana and Perez exchange hooks to the body. Santana lands two hard hooks to the side of Perez’s head. Perez mixes in a good body head left hand combination. Perez easily slips a jab from Santana. Santana comes forward with a three punch combination that is partially blocked, and Perez goes right back to work with his jab, and partially lands a two punch combination. Santana dodges out of the way of a jab from Perez. Perez slips another jab from Santana. Santana sneaks a right cross past the guard of Perez, but Perez answers with a steady diet of jabs throughout the rest of the round. Santana just doesn’t seem to be throwing enough to give him this round. 10-9 Perez.

Round 4:

Perez throws out three jabs, landing mainly air. Perez throws out another combination that is mainly blocked, and eats a rgith hook in the process. Perez begins to attack the body of and lands some hard thudding left hands to the body. Santana lands a short uppercut. Perez again lands decent hooks to the body of Santana. Perez throws out another combination, and sticks two jabs in the solerplexes of Santana. Perez is making very good use of his jab to the body, and he lands a very hard left hook upstairs. Perez continues his attack to the body of Santana. Santana flicks out and has a right ross blocked by Perez. Santana lands a decent left hook upstairs, but Perez comes right back with a steady attack to the body of Santana. 10-9 round for Perez.

Round 5:

Perez lands an early jab, and Santana answers with some short hooks to the ebody and head. Santana lands a good inside left uppercut, and Perez answers with hooks to the head and body. Perez is not showing much movement, but is throwing more than Santana. Perez finishes a two punch combination with a glancing right hand. Perez lands more hooks and uppercuts inside close. Santana lands a good right hook to the body of Perez. Perez lands three hard hooks to the body of Santana. A left hook to the body of Santana backs him up. Perez landing good short uppercuts and solid left hooks to the body. Perez lands two more good left hooks to the body of Santana. Santana is unable to keep up with the work rate of Perez. Perez mixing up his punches between body and head well. Santana lands a good left hook to the temple, but Perez does not seem fazed by the harder shots of Santana. 10-9 for Perez.

Round 6:

Santana comes out firing but has most of his punches blocked. Perez smothers Santana and sticks to his gameplan. Perez and Santana lands jabs at the same time, but Perez answers with a volume of punches, and connects with an uppercut and then a straight right hand. Perez keeps his guard up while Santana throws, and then answers with more punches. Perez lands a good right hook to the body, and then three consecutive jabs upstairs. Santana misses with a wild left hook to the body, and gets backed up by the steady and constant punches of Perez. Santana seems to be having trouble solving the guard of Perez. Santana lands a good hard left hook upstairs on Perez as he comes forward, and Perez lands a good right hand. Last ten seconds of the round end with Perez throwing, and partially landing some shots. Santana is clearly landing the harder shots, but again is unable to answer the voluminous punching of Perez. 10-9 for Perez.

Round 7:

Santana throws out a few range finding jabs, and Perez seems not as eager to come forward. Both fighters land jabs at the same time. Santana connects with multiple soft jabs. Santana is starting to stay busier with his jab, and lands a quick combination while backing up. Santana is dancing away, and pop shotting Perez with his jab. Perez momentarily traps Santana and attacks the body. Santana regains ring control pop shotting Perez with jabs on the outside. Perez connects with a good left hook on Santana. Perez lands a good left hook to the body of Santana, and another left hook upstairs. Perez connects with another good left hook to the body of Santana near the end of the round. Perez came on a little bit near the end of the round, but not enough to win it. 10-9 round for Santana.

Round 8:

Santana misses with a jab and Perez answers and connects with a jab of his own. Santana bangs two more jabs at the nose of Perez. Santana stays light on his feet, and flicks out more quick jabs. Santana connects with a quick combination on the outside. Santana lands another short jab. Perez lands three hooks to the body of Santana. Santana continues to circle Perez pop shotting him with jabs on the outside. Perez lands a good hard left hook and gets a reaction from the crowd. Perez lands another good left hook to the body, and Santana is able to fight his way out of a ring trap. Perez throws a jab to the body but misses. Perez connects with some short hooks to the body and head of Santana. Santana lands a hard left uppercut to the body of Perez. Perez attacks with body shots by the ropes, and lands a good left hook near the center of the ring, and connects with two hard right hands as the round ends. 10-9 round for Perez.

Round 9:

Perez comes out and looks lighter on his feet. Perez throws out two hard left hooks, and sneaks a couple shots past the guard of Santana. Perez lands a good short uppercut and Santana connects with a right hand upstairs. Perez is starting to look like he did in the earlier rounds, and continues his assault to the body of Santana. Santana lands some good left hands to the body of Perez, but Perez answers with a bigger volume of punches. Perez comes forward with a lunging left hook, and scores with some punches on Santana near the ropes. Santana has some sweeling by his right eye. Perez lands two more hooks to the body of Santana, and has Santana backing up. Santana eats another three punch combination, and looks worn out. Perez stabs another jab at the body of Santana, and connects with some hard hooks to the body. Perez tags Santana with a good right uppercut, and a left hook to the body. Both fighters are exchanging hard shots in the center of the ring, with Santana landing more shots near the end of the round. Close round, but 10-9 for Perez.

Round 10:

Santana and Perez touch gloves at the beginning of the round as the crowd cheers. Santana lands a good body head left hand combination right away. Santana digs a good right hook to the body of Perez. Santana connects with some pop shot jabs on the outside. Perez has some swelling around his left eye. Santana doubles up his left hand, but Perez answers with a combination to the body that stops Santana from throwing. Santana connects with a good left hook to the body, and Perez answers with a good right hook to the body. Perez connects with two jabs, and lands a stiff right hand on Santana by the ropes. Both fighters are doing good body work on each other, and they exchange very solid shots by the ropes. Perez continues to push Santana around the ring, but eats two left hooks from Santana. Perez snaps the head of Santana with a jab and they exchange combinations by the ropes as the round ends. 10-9 round for Santana.

Official scores are 96-94, 96-94, and 96-94 for Manny Perez.

Juan Carlos Burgos (28-1) vs. Cristobal Cruz (39-12-3); Junior Lightweight

Round 1:

Burgos has the obvious height advantage as they come to the center of the ring. Cruz’s jab is blocked by Burgos. Cruz comes forward with a right hook but misses. Burgos partially connects with a right cross. Cruz misses with a wild right hook. Burgos lands a short inside combination. Burgos flicks out two jabs but does not land, and follows it with a hard right hand to the body of Cruz. Burgos lands a jab, and connects with a right hook to the body of Cruz. Cruz misses with two hooks as he comes forward, and Burgos connects with another right hand to the body. Burgos is easily able to avoid another combination from Cruz. Burgos lands a good jab to the nose of Cruz. Burgos lands a two punch combination to the body as Cruz comes forward. 10-9 round for Burgos.

Round 2:

Cruz lands an early jab to the body, and Burgos answers with a low blow. The referee gives Cruz time to recover, and Cruz comes forward missing when the action resumes. Burgos thuds a hard right hand upstairs on Cruz, and Cruz misses wildly with punches again. Cruz partially connects with a left hook upstairs. Burgos lands a good combination as Cruz comes forward. Burgos lands a solid hook to the body, and Cruz lands a combination as he comes forward. Burgos lands another right hand as Cruz comes forward. Burgos lands some decent hooks to the body on Cruz. Cruz lands a jab and straight right hand on Burgos near the end of the round. 10-9 round for Burgos.

Round 3:

Cruz comes forward and partially lands a left hook to the body of Burgos. Cruz lands a right hook as he comes forward. Burgos barely misses with a three punch combination, and a counter by Cruz has Burgos reeling backwards. Cruz misses wildly with a combination as Burgos moves out of the way. Burgos lands a jab to the body of Cruz. Burgos connects with a three punch combination. Cruz misses wildly again with a two punch combination. Cruz partially lands a left hook upsatiars, and follows it up with a decent jab. Burgos lands a good three punch combination. Cruz falls to the ground, and the referee rules it a slip, and Burgos later falls to the ground, and the referee rules it a push. Burgos lands a good jab, and Cruz misses wildly again. 10-9 round for Burgos.

Round 4:

Cruz flicks out and misses a jab, but may have landed a right hand as he comes forward. Cruz lands two hooks to the body, and lands some short uppercuts while holding the back of the head of Burgos. Burgos lands a short right uppercut on Cruz as he comes forward. Cruz is the aggressor, but not landing any solid punches. Cruz lands a straight right hand upstairs, and Burgos is unable to land any clean punches in his counter attempts. Cruz continues to stalk Burgos around the ring, but throws mainly wild punches. Cruz connects with a good right hand upstairs, but eats a right hand a few seconds later. Burgos lands an uppercut but Cruz shakes off the effects of the punch. Cruz connects with two good left hooks upstairs. Cruz continues to chase Burgos around the ring with mainly wild shots. 10-9 round for Cruz.

Round 5:

Burgos misses with an early left uppercut. Burgos counters an attack from Cruz with shots to the body, but nothing very hard lands. Burgos comes forward and falls to the ground after getting pushed by Cruz. Cruz slips a jab from Burgos. Neither fighter has landing many significant punches this fight. Cruz comes forward with more wild punches, and does not land much. Burgos connects with a decent straight right hand. Cruz connects with a left hook to the head of Burgos. Cruz falls to the ground and the referee rules it is not a knockdown. Cruz misses with two jabs. Cruz partially lands a straight right hand. 10-9 round for Cruz, but only because he was the aggressor.

Round 6:

Cruz lands a lead left hook upstairs. Cruz lands another lead left hook as he lunges forward. Cruz misses with two wild hooks. Burgos lands two more stiff jabs, and Burgos lands a good left hook that knocks Cruz down. Cruz gets a standing eight count from the referee. Cruz gets warned for holding behind the head, and Cruz falls to the ground as he tries to avoid Burgos. The referee rules it a slip, and Cruz has a cut on his right eye. Burgos lands some decent hooks to the body of Cruz. Cruz connects with a solid right hand near the end of the round. 10-8 round for Burgos.

Round 7:

Cruz looks to still have his legs underneath him. Cruz comes out attacking again, and is warned by the referee for holding behind the head. Cruz comes forward with a combination but does not connect with much. Cruz lands a decent straight right hand. Cruz lands a few right hands to the body of Burgos. Cruz connects with some short uppercuts to the body of Burgos. Cruz continues to apply the pressure of Burgos, and Burgos is unable to effectively counter. Cruz lands a decent lead left hook, and has Burgos moving backwards this round. Cruz misses with another wild left hook. Cruz comes forward and lands a decent straight left hand. 10-9 round for Cruz.

Round 8:

Cruz continues to apply the pressure, and neither fighter is landing any solid punches. Cruz misses with his jabs. The height and reach of Burgos is difficult for Cruz to solve. Cruz misses with a wild three punch combination. Burogs lands a decent jab, and Cruz connects with a hard left hook. Burgos ducks under a hook from Cruz. Burgos and Cruz exchange body shots, and then they clinch. Burgos connects with a quick jab. Ugly round so far. Cruz comes forward and lands a hook to the body, and Burgos answers with a good hard jab. Not the most exciting round, but a close one, 10-9 round for Cruz.

Round 9:

Cruz misses with an early jab, and Burgos throws out four to five jabs. Cruz knocks Burgos down with what appears to be a straight right hand. The referee gives Burgos a standing eight count, and gets on his bike and backpedals from Cruz. Burgos clinches to give his legs some time to recooperate. The fight suddenly got very interesting. Cruz continues to stalk, and partially misses with a lead left hook. A straight right hand from Cruz has Burgos backing away again. They clinch by the ropes, and the referee is forced to separate them. Cruz stalks Burgos around the ring, and they clinch by the center again. Cruz lands a straight right hand and then they clinch, and the referee warns both fighters about head butts. Cruz misses with a two punch combination. Cruz misses with another jab, but lands a right hand upstairs as the round ends. 10-8 round for Cruz. Replay shows it was a short hook jab that knocked Burgos down.

Round 10:

Burgos and Cruz clinch early in the last round, and the referee separates them and warns them about headbutts. Cruz throws wildly again while pressing and they clinch. A jab from Burgos stops Cruz dead in his tracks. Burgos connects with a hard left hook in the groin area, and Cruz is given time to recover. Burgos barely misses with a lead left hook, and Cruz has Burgos caught near the corner and lands a good right hand and short left hand. Cruz continues his assault, and Burgos connects with a good counter left hook. Brugos lands an over the top right hand. Cruz lands two hard straight right hands. Burgos and Cruz exchange short blows near the center of the ring. Burgos lands some decent hooks to the body of Cruz. Cruz connects with a good straight right hand. They clinch by the ropes again near the end of the round. 10-9 round for Cruz.

Official scores are 96-92, 96-92, and 98-90 for Juan Carlos Burgos.

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