Late last night at the San Manuel Casino in Highland, California, former featherweight title challenger Bernabe Concepcion overcame a spirited effort from San Diego’s Aaron Garcia over ten competitive rounds on his way to a split-decision verdict. It was an intense battle from the get-go and the decision left people from Garcia’s side feeling slighted after seeing their charge often take the fight straight to his younger foe.
Concepcion was coming off of a shocking upset to Juan Carlos Martinez this past May and he came out with a definite sense of urgency in the first round of the fight. Garcia would settle down and he seemed to nip some of the rounds with a thudding body attack that often had Concepcion on his heels.
<— Slideshow: Behind the scenes in Highland with Manny Pacquiao, Bernabe Concepcion, Rodel Mayol, Richie Mepranum and others
It was great stuff from both guys and the action didn’t let up in the tenth and final round. When the bell sounded, Garcia’s trainer Vince Parra, known for his work with lightweight contender Mercito Gesta, raised his fighter in the air and would later tell me via text that he felt Aaron had done enough to win at least seven rounds.
Concepcion’s mentor Manny Pacquiao was in attendance, as his MP Promotions’ company co-staged the event along with Top Rank. Pacquiao has a November 12th bout of his own with Juan Manuel Marquez right around the corner and he must have been pleased to see his three fighters emerge victorious, as former junior flyweight champion Rodel Mayol and former flyweight title challenger Richie Mepranum also scored victories on the undercard.
For an inside look at all the action, please visit the slideshow on the left or check out Concepcion defeats Garcia, Pacquiao in the building
Chris Robinson is based out of Las Vegas, Nevada. He can be reached at Trimond@aol.com