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Saturday, April 7, 2012

Lopez, Ambrosio, Valdivia Earn Mexican National Team Tryout with Mex Games Wins

By Ryan Maquiñana

With a formal Mexican national team tryout on the line, a combined six fighters from Northern and Central California fought their hearts out in the 2012 Mex Games finals at the Long Beach Hilton on Saturday.

A pair of Fresno fighters out of the Main Event Boxing Gym, Efren "Chico" Lopez (123 lbs. J.O.) and Luis Ambrosio (123 lbs. Open), emerged victorious in their respective weight classes.  Lopez defeated Anthony Zavala while Ambrosio beat Humberto Ruvalcaba.

A third Central fighter, Bakersfield PAL's Daniel Valdivia, outpointed Bryan Rangel to win his 165-pound Open middleweight showdown.  He will add the gold medal to his 2011 National PAL title.

"They all fought great and represented the region well," CCA president Armando Mancinas said about the local trio.

Avenal's Marisol Lopez took silver at the Mex Games. (Armando Mancinas)

San Jose PAL's Andy Vences, the 2011 National PAL bronze medalist, took silver in the 132-pound Open division after dropping a decision in a hard-fought lightweight battle with Jousce Gonzalez.

"Andy fought smart, and I thought he won," said Mancinas, who worked Vences' corner.  "The other guy was a good inside fighter, and he got Andy on the ropes, but Andy would use the one-two in the later rounds and angle out.  I really thought Andy pulled it out."

Despite the setback, all is not lost for Vences, as Mancinas explained after the fight.

"An official from the Mexican commission came up to us and said he liked the way Andy fought," Mancinas added.  "He said he would put in a good word for Andy to try to get him a tryout even though he didn't win today."

Teenage junior flyweight Marisol Lopez of Avenal's Kings Gym was edged by Karina Sarabia in the 106-pound J.O. title bout, while Arvin light heavyweight Jose Alcala was stopped by Ronald Mixon in the second round of the Open 178-pound final.  Both earned silver medals.


WOMEN'S JUNIOR FLYWEIGHT (106 LBS.): Karina Sarabia dec. Marisol Lopez (Avenal)
MEN'S BANTAMWEIGHT (123 LBS.): Efren "Chico" Lopez (Fresno) dec. Anthony Zavala


MEN'S BANTAMWEIGHT (123 LBS.): Luis Ambrosio (Fresno) dec. Humberto Ruvalcaba
MEN'S LIGHTWEIGHT (132 LBS.): Jousce Gonzalez dec. Andy Vences (San Jose)
MEN'S MIDDLEWEIGHT (165 LBS.): Daniel Valdivia (Bakersfield) dec. Bryan Rangel
MEN'S LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT (178 LBS.): Ronald Mixon RSC-2 Jose Alcala (Arvin)

Boxing correspondent Ryan Maquiñana is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and Ring Magazine’s Ratings Panel. E-mail him at, check out his blog at, or follow him on Twitter: @RMaq28.

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