Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Downs again victorious at boxing trials

Fort Carson boxer Christopher Downs continued his hot streak today with another narrow victory that puts him in the light-heavyweight finals of the U.S. Olympic team trials in Houston.

Downs beat 2006 National Golden Gloves champion Yathomas Riley 11-9 to move within a win of his first trials title. He led 2-1 after two rounds and 8-5 after the third.

"Today's bout was a chess match," said Downs, a 32-year-old member of the World Class Athlete Program who has served in Iraq. "I didn't know he was going to change his tactics that much. He's usually a pressure boxer, and today he was looking to counter and keep the score low. I think I was a little quicker than him.

"The week has gone well. Some bouts have been a little closer than I'd like. But I'm still here, and I'm going to box in the finals, so I couldn't ask for a better outcome."

Other winners from Fort Carson were Boyd Melson, who scored a 28-27 punch-count victory over Anthony Campbell in the welterweight division, and Andrew Shepherd, who defeated Lenroy Thompson 18-17 in a tiebreaker in the super-heavyweight division.

Three Fort Carson boxers suffered their second loss of the double-elimination trials: Mahlon Kerwick was stopped by Charles Hatley in the fourth round of a welterweight bout; Zacchaeus Hardrick was stopped by Dominic Wade in the third round of a middleweight fight; and Joe Guzman dropped a 23-11 decision to David Carey in the heavyweight division.

Melson and Shepherd will compete Thursday in challenger's bracket fights. Downs will compete Saturday in the first round of championship bouts.

Wariner sets sights on world record

Watch out, Michael Johnson. Jeremy Wariner wants your world record.

Coming off a personal-best time in his last competition, Wariner, the reigning 400-meter Olympic and world champion, believes he can top Johnson's mark at the World Outdoor Track & Field Championships, which begin Friday in Osaka, Japan.

Wariner, 23, of Waco, Texas, ran the sixth-fastest time ever, 43.5 seconds, two weeks ago at a meet in Stockholm, Sweden. It's the fastest time since the retired Johnson, a five-time Olympic gold medalist and nine-time world champion, set the world record of 43.18 seconds at the 1999 world championships in Seville, Spain.

"My workouts have been getting better. I'm stronger. I'm quicker," Wariner said Monday on a conference call. "I'm trying to defend my world title. At the same time, I know I can get the world record."

Wariner will compete Tuesday. Also competing Tuesday will be Air Force graduate Dana Pounds, the only American woman throwing the javelin in Osaka.

A look at the TV schedule for the world championships:

Saturday, 4 p.m., Versus

Sunday, 10:30 a.m., NBC; 4 p.m., Versus

Monday, 5 p.m., Versus

Tuesday, 5 p.m., Versus

Aug. 29, 5 p.m., Versus

Aug. 30, 5 p.m., Versus

Aug. 31, 5 p.m., Versus

Sept. 1, noon, NBC; 7 p.m., Versus

Sept. 2, 11 a.m., NBC; 4 p.m., Versus

Supercross coming to Springs

More than 400 riders are expected Saturday for the Supercross State Championship at the Norris-Penrose Event Center.

The annual race is sanctioned by the Sports Riders Association of Colorado. Quads will compete at 5 p.m. and supercross pro riders will race at 7 p.m. for a $5,000 purse.

Tickets are $17.50 for adults and $11.50 for children 6-11. Children 5 and under are free. Tickets may be purchased at; by calling 719-576-2626; or in person at the Norris-Penrose box office starting at 2 p.m. Saturday.

For more information, call John Murray at 719-331-6234.

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