Ruvalcaba gives Pope another beating |

Ruvalcaba gives Pope another beating

Steve Yingling, Tribune sports editor

The last time Simon Ruvalcaba was feeling this good about his boxing career, he was participating in the Texas state preliminaries in November 2000.

Ruvalcaba, a Caesars Tahoe employee, won his second straight fight over Dwayne Pope on the undercard of the Sharmba Mitchell-Ben Tackie bout Saturday night in Reno.

The South Tahoe High grad who now lives in Carson City won the four-round 150-pound fight by unanimous decision. All three judges scored the bout 40-36.

“It’s been a long drought … almost like the drought we had in Tahoe in the late ’80s and early ’90s,” Ruvalcaba said. “I’m glad things are looking up and I’m smiling more.”

Once again, Pope had trouble making weight and Ruvalcaba took advantage by fighting his fight.

“I was moving in circles and using my jab a lot and countering off his move,” Ruvalcaba said. “I knew in the first round he had nothing, no power whatsoever.”

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With his lead growing, Ruvalcaba became more cautious in the final two rounds.

“I hurt him a few times and I let him off (the hook) a few times,” Ruvalcaba said. “The most important thing for me right now is to win a fight, no matter how I do it.”

Afterward, the Nevada Athletic Commission stripped Pope (0-6) of his boxing license indefinitely, according to Ruvalcaba.

“The commission likes to see progress and they haven’t seen that in him,” Ruvalcaba said. “It’s a good move because he’s been taking a lot of shots. Guys (like Pope) who aren’t afraid to take shots, they can get hurt.

“He can still make it in boxing, maybe as a trainer … it doesn’t have to be as a fighter. Just a few months ago, I was thinking the same way about myself.”

In the main event, Sharmba Mitchell won a unanimous decision over Ben Tackie in an International Boxing Federation junior welterweight title elimination bout. In the co-main attraction, Jeff Lacy stopped Anware Oshana by technical knockout in the second round to defend his World Boxing Council Continental Americas and United States Boxing Association titles.

Ruvalcaba plans to fight next month in Detroit or Laughlin before returning to Caesars Tahoe for a July 12 card.