Luis Alberto “El Venado” Lopez (29-2, 16 KOs) celebrated the start of Mexican Independence Day Weekend by holding onto his IBF Featherweight World Title against the former two-time world title contender Joet Gonzalez (26-4, 15 KOs) on Friday night at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Lopez aimed to be the first to defeat Gonzalez without controversy. However, he faced a tough competitor who didn’t give an inch.
In the first round, Gonzalez targeted Lopez’s midsection with a flurry of punches. Yet, by the third and fourth rounds, Lopez adjusted his strategy, utilizing his footwork to land precise shots from a distance.
Gonzalez’s solid defensive stance made it hard for Lopez to land his characteristic dynamic punches. Still, the intermittent counterattacks by Lopez prevented Gonzalez from seizing control.
As the fight progressed, Lopez’s energy appeared to wane, and sensing an opportunity, Gonzalez resumed his aggressive approach reminiscent of the first round.
Yet, all his efforts were in vain. Lopez held onto his title with the judges giving scores of 118-110, 117-111, and 116-112.
Reflecting on the fight, Lopez remarked, “We were aware of the threat posed by Joet Gonzalez. His relentless offense is notable, and he withstands almost any punch thrown his way. We anticipated his aggressive strategy, and his drive to strip me of my title. However, my desire to stay champion is equally strong.”
“I managed to rattle him a couple of times. Yet, he’s a resilient fighter, absorbing everything, earning my admiration.”
“It was indeed a closely contested fight. Gonzalez’s strategy was clear – always be on the offensive. Despite the challenge, I am confident about my victory.”
Gonzalez responded, “I believe the scoring could have been tighter. I’m genuinely disheartened by how I performed. Despite my thorough preparation, this has been my least impressive title fight. I’ve fared better in my previous championship fights, dodging more punches. While I managed to land a few good ones, I know I could’ve performed better.”