Undefeated prospects top card in Midland, Texas

By Guest Writer David Finger

There is no question that Midland, Texas is a city on the rise thanks in large part to the thriving petroleum industry in the Permian Basin. Which makes the July 20th boxing show in “The Tall City” such a perfect fit: because two of the hottest young prospects in the Lone Star State are set to face off against separate foes in an action-packed card that could be the first step towards stardom for the talented young Texans.



In the co-main event undefeated Abel Mendoza (15-0, 11 KOs) of Pecos, Texas is slated to fight journeyman Raymond Chacon (7-38-1, 0 KOs) of Los Angeles in a six round lightweight fight. Chacon may not have much of a record but he is regarded as a tough and crafty southpaw who will almost certainly go some rounds with the young Mendoza. Chacon has only been stopped twice in his career and has shown tremendous durability in the past. Although Mendoza is a hot prospect, there are some who argue that he may not even be the best lightweight prospect in West Texas anymore. Amarillo’s Abel Navarrete Jr. (5-0, 3 KOs) has made a strong argument that he is the best young lightweight in the Lone Star State after he demolished Dwayne Bonds in Amarillo back on June 29th. Navarrete will be fighting New Mexican Derek Perez (2-11-1, 1 KO) in a four rounder in on the July 20th card in Midland. Perez is not seen as a world beater but he is a durable and cagy veteran who has given young fighters fits in the past.

If Navarrete is trying to make a statement in Midland he will need to win in dominant fashion against the Belen native. But assuming both Abel’s come out on top there is a good chance that the fans should see both men in the ring together to possible hype up a future clash. There is little question that both men are on a collision course and July 20th should offer fans a short teaser trailer of what may just emerge as West Texas’s biggest boxing rivalry in years.

In the main event, a pair of undefeated local heavyweights will square off in a four round fight as Midland’s Nick Tipton (1-0, 1 KO) steps into the ring with Odessa’s Roman Huerta (1-0, 1 KO) in what promises to be a bombs-away brawl. Both men scored highlight reel first round knockouts in their professional debuts and will be looking to test the chin of their opponent this Saturday.

Also featured on the card will be undefeated light heavyweight Desmond “Dez” Hill (4-0, 4 KOs) of Odessa as he takes on debuting Efrain Escudero of Midland. Hill headlined against popular Rico Urquizo back in December in Midland in an absolute war and although his opponent this weekend doesn’t have the experience of Urquizo in the boxing ring, he may still be the best fighter Hill has ever stepped in the ring against. Escudero is a veteran of over 44 MMA fights, including fights in UFC 197, UFC 188, UFC 145, UFC 141, UFC 114, and UFC 103. He also was the winner of Season 8 of the Ultimate Fighter and is the only fighter on the card with his own Wikipedia page. Fans in Midland will undoubtedly be excited to see the explosive Hill in action but if Escudero can duplicate his success from MMA into the boxing ring, it may prove to be a difficult night for the local puncher.

Rounding off the card will be debuting light heavyweight James Land as he takes on Ysidro Portillo (0-1) in a four rounder. Both men are from Midland. In the opening fight of the night a pair of Hobbs, New Mexico natives square off as undefeated heavyweight Ruben Sanchez (1-0, 1 KO) takes on debuting Mark Martinez in a four rounder. It will be Sanchez’s first fight since winning his professional debut back in November of 2017.

The Golden Eagle Promotions and School of Hard Knocks Boxing promoted show will take place at the La Hacienda Event Center. Doors open at 6PM with the first fight slated to kick off at 7PM. Tickets start at $35 for general admission and $75 for ringside can be purchased at La Hacienda Event Center or by calling promoter Isidro Castillo at 1-575-263-4942.