Saul Bustos made a name for himself Sunday night at the expense of Luis Lopez.
Bustos outboxed Lopez over eight rounds, winning by unanimous decision at the Omega Products International in Corona, California.
Scores were 80-72, 80-72 and 79-73 for Bustos, who improves to 13-0-1, 7 knockouts.
The victory over Lopez was a breakthrough performance by Bustos, a Los Angeles resident who had not fought since stopping journeyman Ariel Vasquez on February 21.
In his last bout on January 10, López, who is promoted by Thompson Boxing Promotions, knocked out Isaiah Varnell in round 3. López was considered the favorite going into Sunday’s fight, but Bustos was effective early on and never looked back.
The taller Bustos mixed his attack from the opening bell, putting López on the defensive. Bustos connected almost at will, connecting with lead or counter left hooks to the head and body that found their marks.
López began letting his hands go more round 4. He was able to connect with counter overhand rights to the head of Bustos, but was not busy enough to offset Bustos’ high punch volume.
Bustos’ punch output dropped during the second half of the fight, likely from the over-100 degree heat inside the Omega Products International, which is mostly used as a storage facility for home improvement products.
During the final two rounds of the fight, there was no sense of urgency by López. Anytime he would rally, Bustos would initiate exchanges, connecting with straight right hands to López’s head.
“I came into this fight in tremendous shape knowing I was fighting in my first eight-round bout,” said Bustos, who has now won his last 10 bouts since fighting to a technical draw against Nam Phan in August 2015. “The fight was explosive from the very beginning and I knew I had to go to the body early to slow him down. That strategy worked perfect as he was starting to slow down in the later rounds.
“I give López a lot of credit for making me work in every round. I’m ready to fight the next level of opposition and, hopefully, I can fight for a regional title in my next few fights.”
López, who resides in Corona, which is a suburb of Los Angeles, drops to 8-1-1, 4 KOs.
In the co-feature bout of the ‘3.2.1 Boxing’ card, junior welterweight George Acosta defeated Esteban Muñoz by unanimous decision.
Scores were 60-54, 60-54 and 59-55 for Acosta, who improves to 10-1, 1 KO.
Acosta, who resides in the Los Angeles suburb of Whittier, utilized his superior skill-set to outbox Muñoz throughout most of the fight.
Muñoz, who resides in nearby San Bernardino, suffers his first loss as a pro and drops to 2-1, 2 KOs.
In featherweight action, Katsuma Akitsugi dropped San Bernardino’s David Angeles (1-3) at the end of round two en route to a one-sided decision victory.
All three judges scored the bout 40-35 in favor of Akitsugi, who improves to 4-0, 1 KO. The 22-year-old Akitsugi is originally from Wakayama, Japan and now resides in Hollywood, California.
The next Thompson Boxing Promotions card will likely take place in October.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for BoxingScene since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing
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