Leo Santa Cruz (white gloves) trades punches with Cristian Mijares (yellow gloves) during their super bantamweight title bout at MGM Grand Arena. Photo by Stephen R. Sylvanie, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters.
LAS VEGAS - Leo Santa Cruz dominated former champion Cristian Mijares to retain his World Boxing Council title with a 12-round unanimous decision in an all-Mexican super bantamweight matchup on Saturday.
The 25-year-old Santa Cruz is coming into his prime and he showed it by overpowering the veteran Mijares, winning on all three judges' scorecards and improving to 27 wins, no losses and one draw.
Two judges scored it 120-108 and one judge had it 119-109.
Southpaw Mijares, 32, was completely outclassed at the MGM Grand Garden Arena as he dropped to 49-8-2 with 24 knockouts. Mijares, who was fighting in the 12th title fight of his career, is a former WBC and WBA world super flyweight champ.
"Mijares is a great boxer," Santa Cruz said. "I came to do what I had to do to win. We practiced everything to put on a great fight."
This was the second title defence for Santa Cruz. He won the crown in August with a third-round knockout of compatriot Victor Terrazas.
Santa Cruz defended the title in December, taking a unanimous decision over Puerto Rican southpaw Cesar Seda.
The Las Vegas card also featured former champ Saul Alvarez who beat Alfredo Angulo in Alvarez's first fight since suffering a one-sided loss to Floyd Mayweather.
Alvarez, whose nickname is "Canelo", won by a technical knockout in the 10th round when the referee Tony Weeks stepped in to stop the non-title super welterweight fight, with Alvarez well ahead on points.
Weeks' decision to halt the fight early in the round drew loud boos from the crowd.
"The ref stopped the fight," Alvarez said. "I could have fought another 10 rounds. It is not my fault."
Angulo was angry the ref ended the fight when he did.
"It was 20 weeks of training, it is disappointing. I wanted to keep fighting," he said.
Alvarez lost a majority decision and his titles to unbeaten American Mayweather in September. He improved to 43-1-1.
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