New Mexico State End of the Year Ratings 2017

By Austin Killeen December 30, 2017          (click on picture to enlarge)

Fidel Maldonado Jr.

Austin Trout

In the “Land of Enchantment” boxers are rated in the original eight weight divisions. If I used the seventeen divisions that exist today it would look ridiculous. You would have two or three boxers in each weight class. As it has been for the past few years, the three best fighters in the state are Austin Trout, Fidel Maldonado Jr., and Josh Torres. Their records are loaded with difficult opponents; that’s why they’re the best in the State.



Gerardo Quintana

Ronnie Baca helping a senior citizen

It was a slow year in the heavyweight division, with Ronnie Baca’s win over Manual Eastman the most important. Baca was winning in a close fight when a clash of gloves damaged Eastman’s right arm. He tried to fight on in the fifth round, but the pain was too much for the Los Lunas boxer. Undefeated, hard punching Elijio Sena of Clovis was inactive in 2017. A Baca/Sena bout would create great interest in New Mexico but time is running out on this matchup. In the light heavyweight division, Gerardo Quintana is the man to beat. The question is who is capable of doing it. Quintana has power, solid defense and boxing skills. I’d love to see Hobbs promoter Isidro Castillo find a tough matchup for the local hero to face.


Bryant McClain

Isidro Castillo Jr. with his dad.

In the middleweight division Austin Trout lost to Jarrett Hurd in an attempt to win the IBF World super welterweight title. For the first five rounds, Trout was unbeatable. In the sixth round Trout suddenly looked tired and it was downhill from there, until he failed to answer the bell for the eleventh round. Isidro Castillo Jr. and Bryant McClain remained unbeaten and will face each other on January 27th of next year at the Buffalo Thunder Resorts and Casino.



Ronnie Baca

Matthew Esquibel

The welterweight division looks deeper than it has in several years. Fidel Maldonado, Jr. surprised many winning a unanimous decision over Pablo Cesar Cano on TV. This was followed by a heart breaking stoppage at the hands of Ismael Barroso also on TV. Josh Torres looked impressive in stopping John David Charles, but didn’t fight again in 2017. Brian Mendoza continued to look imposing and needs to enter the deep waters in 2018. Antonio Martinez and Matthew Esquibel both scored spectacular KO’s this year. Cristian Cabral looked very impressive in his comeback and appears ready to turn up the heat. Although he has had only three pro bouts, Ronnie Baca faced tough foes and appears to be somebody to watch.

Matthew Griego

Augustine Banegas

In the lightweight division Jose Salinas is a dominating force, but only fought once. In the featherweight division both Jason Sanchez and Jose Osorio took their careers to new heights, with Osorio upsetting Roman Ruben Reynoso of Argentina in the year’s biggest surprise. Bantamweight Augustine Banegas and Flyweight Matthew Griego are both undefeated and appear to be on a collision course within the next two years.



I wish everybody a happy new year and look forward to some great fights in 2018.


  1. Ronald Baca, Gallup (9-3-2, 3 KO’s)
  2. Manual Eastman, Los Lunas (2-5-1, 1 KO)
  3. Randy McCarty, Las Cruces (2-3-1)
  4. Omar Acosta, Clovis (1-0-0, 1 KO)
  5. Gabriel Vejar, Lovington (0-1-0)
  6. Eduardo Silva, Belen (0-1-0)
  7. Ysidro Portillo, Roswell (0-1-0)


  1. Gerardo Quintana (6-1-1, 3 KO’s)
  2. Richard Villa, Roswell (2-0-1, 1 KO)
  3. Richard Urquizo, Clovis (2-4-2, 1 KO)
  4. Jordan Gregory, Albuquerque (0-2-2)
  5. Ryan Colwell, Albuquerque (0-1-0)


  1. Austin Trout, Las Cruces (30-4-0, 17 KO’s)
  2. Joaquin Zamora, Santa Fe (22-4-1, 12 KO’s)
  3. Isidro Castillo Jr., Hobbs (6-0-0, 3 KO’s)
  4. Bryant McClain, Rio Rancho (4-0-2, 1 KO)
  5. Frankie Quintana, Albuquerque (1-0-2, 1 KO)
  6. Oscar Espinoza, Hobbs (2-1-0, 2 KO’s)
  7. Ernesto Salvidrez, Santa Fe (1-0-0, 1 KO)


  1. Fidel Maldonado Jr., Albuquerque (24-4-1, 19 KO’s)
  2. Josh Torres, Albuquerque (16-6-2, 6 KO’s)
  3. Brian Mendoza, Albuquerque (16-0-0, 11 KO’s)
  4. Hector Munoz, Albuquerque (25-19-1, 17 KO’s)
  5. Cristian Cabral, Albuquerque (8-1-1, 4 KO’s)
  6. Matthew Esquibel, Albuquerque (10-0-0, 5 KO’s)
  7. Antonio Martinez, Espanola (8-3-4, 6 KO’s)
  8. Ronnie Baca, Albuquerque (2-0-1, 1 KO)
  9. Tim Ruiz, Roswell (1-0-1, 1 KO)
  10. Derek Perez, Belen (1-7-0, 1 KO)
  11. Ivan Miranda, Santa Fe (1-1-0, 1 KO)
  12. Raymond Lara, Roswell (0-1-0)



  1. Jose Salinas, Las Cruces (10-3-1, 5 KO’s)
  2. Alex Holquin, Albuquerque (11-1-0, 6 KO’s)
  3. Aaron Martinez, Santa Fe (4-1-0, 3 KO’s)
  4. George Roybal, Albuquerque (0-4-0)


  1. Jason Sanchez, Albuquerque (11-0-0, 6 KO’s)
  2. Jose Osorio, Albuquerque (9-3-1, 4 KO’s)
  3. Jesus Pacheco, Albuquerque (7-6-0, 1 KO)
  4. Brandon Holmes, Santa Fe (10-0-0, 6 KO’s)
  5. Ricky Vasquez, Las Cruces (6-4-1, 2 KO’s)
  6. Augustin Perez, Roswell (1-0-0)
  7. Gene Perez, Belen (2-10-1,)
  8. John Herrera, Roswell (4-18-2, 2 KO’s)
  9. Ricardo Reyes, Belen (0-2-0)


  1. Augustine Banegas, Las Cruces (12-0-0, 4 KO’s)


  1. Matthew Griego, Albuquerque (8-0-0, 7 KO’s)