Axel Aragon hopes to have positioned himself for another title shot.

Given the track record of where he managed his latest victory, there stands a chance the 5’0 ½” former title challenger from Ensenada, Mexico will land back on that stage in the near future. For now, he will just have to settle for a 10-round unanimous decision win over Mexico City’s Saul ‘Baby’ Juarez in the battle of former title challenger Friday evening live on Telemundo from a crowdless Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, Florida.

Scores were 100-90, 100-90 and 98-92 in favor of Aragón.

Aragón forced a quick pace from the early going, as expected as the much faster a quicker foe. Juárez was a step behind, looking very much like the elder statesman even at just 29 years ago, struggling to keep up with his fresher opponent nine years his junior.

The closest either fighter came to hitting the deck occurred twice in round three. Juárez lost his footing at one point and was forced to all fours after a failed attempt to clinch. Aragón nearly put him down for real later in the frame, connecting with a jaw-jarring right uppercut which had Juárez on unsteady legs.

Rather than a knockout blow, it proved to be a wakeup call. Juárez managed to untrack his offense in the second half of the fight, as Aragón’s offense was slowed to one punch at a time while also in search of his second wind.

Juárez continued to charge forward, not always landing but at least forcing the action. Aragón fought in reverse, reaching with his jab while also largely playing defense against his resurgent foe.

The trend continued through round nine, where Juárez was the more active of the two. Aragón was landing the cleaner blows, which clearly resonated with the ringside officials although he was outworked for much of the stretch.

It never mattered as far as the scorecards are concerned, which was just as well that Juárez left his fight in that frame. Aragón closed the show strong in the 10th and final round, outworking Juárez to put an exclamation point on what proved to be a clear cut victory.

Aragón improves to 14-3-1 (8KOs), having last seen the win column one year ago almost to the date. The diminutive contender registered a 2nd round knockout last August to extend his win streak to three in a row heading into an unexpected title challenge versus Wilfredo ‘Bimbito’ Mendez.

The opportunity came on short notice, filling in for Colombia’s Gabriel Mendoza who was unable to keep the date due to travel visa issues. Aragón had previously dropped a wide decision to Mendez but offered a much stronger showing only to suffer the unkindest of cuts—one over his left eye which pre-empted the bout in the 7th round, where Aragón dropped a narrow split decision defeat.

Juárez came up well short in his two career title fight attempts, which clearly will remain the closest he will get to a major title. The second-generation boxer—whose brother Raul Juárez was a four-time title challenger and father Raul Lopez also boxed—falls to 25-12-2 (13KOs), having now lost three in a row and four of his last five starts.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox