Las Vegan ‘Chuy’ Gutierrez wins minor title at Sunset Station

Maybe when he’s done boxing, Jesus “Chuy” Gutierrez can find a second career as a mail carrier.

He delivered in a big way Saturday night at Sunset Station’s outdoor amphitheater despite some intermittent raindrops in defeating Rashad Ganaway and winning his first title — the World Boxing Council’s United States National Boxing Championship lightweight belt.

The 25-year-old Las Vegan won an eight-round majority decision to improve to 13-0.

“I thought I dominated,” Gutierrez said. “He was running the whole time. It was an ugly win, but I’ll take it.”

Judges Jerry Roth (78-74) and Dave Moretti (77-75) scored the fight for Gutierrez, while Tim Cheatham had it a 76-76 draw.

The start of the six-bout card was delayed for more than an hour when a rainstorm passed through Henderson. A plastic tarp was placed over the ring to keep the canvas dry as the rain fell. There was also lightning in the area, and the amphitheater was evacuated as a precaution.

But the skies eventually cleared long enough for the card to proceed, and after another brief delay before the main event, the ring was prepared.

Once the fight began, the only thunder was from Gutierrez’s fists. He was the aggressor from the opening bell, cutting off the ring, walking his man down and delivering a steady amount of blows as light rain fell throughout the fight.

Gutierrez delivered some hard shots to the body in the second round that appeared to stun his overmatched opponent.

Ganaway (14-5-1) tried to slow Gutierrez by continuously holding. But Gutierrez fought his way out of the clinches and was relentless in his pursuit.

Gutierrez was looking for a knockout in the final round, hammering away at Ganaway, who was strictly in survival mode as the final seconds ticked away.

“I don’t think he wanted to fight after the second round,” Gutierrez said. “I know I hurt him, and I just kept going after him. I tried to finish him, but I know I dominated the fight.”

Gutierrez said the rain delay didn’t bother him and that he didn’t even notice the interruption to the card.

“We were ready,” he said. “And if we had to wait a little longer, no problem. It is what it is.”

Gutierrez said he plans to fight in November and hopes what he did Saturday will open the door to bigger and more lucrative fights.

“This is what we’ve been working for the whole time,” he said. “Now, I hope it will pay off.”

On the undercard, Las Vegas junior middleweight Quontez McRath won his professional debut, capturing a four-round unanimous decision over Enrique Montes. All three judges scored the fight 40-36.

McRath landed some solid shots, though Montes (0-2-1) also landed some good blows.

Contact reporter Steve Carp at scarp@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2913. Follow him on Twitter: @stevecarprj.

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