U.S. Olympic Festival Roundup : Winners Named to U.S. Wrestling Team
Kenny Monday and John Smith won wrestling titles Wednesday at the U.S. Olympic Sports Festival.
One victory was easy, one was not.
The wrestling champions at the Seoul Olympics each won gold medals at the festival in varying styles. Monday fought off exhaustion and Rob Koll to win the 163-pound division. A well-rested Smith defeated Greg Randall at 136.5 pounds.
On a day when ticket revenues went beyond $2.7 million, putting this festival ahead of the pace that earned the 1987 event in North Carolina a record $3 million, four other 1988 Olympic wrestlers won gold. Tim Vanni (105.5), Jim Scherr (198), Bill Scherr (220) and Bruce Baumgartner (286) won their divisions, but Nate Carr was a loser at 149.5 to John Guira of New York.
The other winners before a festival wrestling-record crowd of 2,500 were National Collegiate Athletic Assn. champion Melvin Douglas III of Minneapolis, who qualified through a mini-tournament to win at 180.5; Brad Penrith of Iowa City, Iowa, at 125.5, and Zeke Jones of Tempe, Ariz., at 114.5 pounds.
All gold medalists earned a spot on the U.S. team that will compete in the world championships next month in Switzerland.
Monday, the 163-pound Olympic gold medalist, wrestled 10 matches in four days, going through a mini-tournament--and 1984 Olympic champion Dave Schultz--before beating Koll, 2-1 in overtime and 3-1.
“It’s finally over,” Monday said. “I’m worn out.”
The top-seeded Smith did not have nearly as difficult a task. He watched the early rounds, when wrestlers seeded fourth, third and second competed.
When Smith got his turn, he seized it, beating Greg Randall of Iowa City, 4-1 and 11-0.
“The best of John Smith is yet to come,” he said. “Sitting around for three days wears you out.”
The South women’s basketball team defeated the West in a four-overtime bronze medal game, 98-97.
The North won the men’s and women’s gold in basketball.
The men, led by Henry Williams and Matt Steigenga’s 14 points, beat the East, 85-78. Antonio Harvey and Corey Williams had 10 apiece. Oklahoma State’s Byron Houston had 10 rebounds, giving him a festival-high 43 in four games.
“This was my best game by far,” said Williams, whose previous high was 13 points. “Everybody probably thought I was out of position in the point, but I got comfortable . . . and my shot fell.”
The North women were led by 24 points from Joy Holmes of Purdue, including eight during a 14-0 run, for a 75-67 victory over the East. The North held the East scoreless in the final 4:41.
“I think something clicked all of a sudden,” North Coach Marynell Meadors of Florida State said. “They decided we were going to take control of this game.”
Don MacLean of UCLA had 21 points and 13 rebounds as the West won the bronze with a 98-74 victory over the South.
In the marathon women’s bronze-medal game, Wendy Scholtens of Vanderbilt, the tournament’s leading scorer, got 11 of her 19 points after regulation play, including the game-winner with 1:22 left in the fourth overtime.
“It was a great game,” West Coach Linda MacDonald of Temple said. “When you have the opportunity to showcase women’s basketball, it’s nice to play a good game.”
Regulation play ended, 66-66, after the West’s Rehema Stephens scored with 26 seconds left. Tami Reiss’ driving layup at the buzzer, with the ball bouncing on the rim several times before falling through, tied it after one overtime for the West.
The South gained a four-point lead early in the second overtime and it led by six early in the third, but the West rallied to tie the scores, 81-81 and 91-91.
Jocelyn Wilkie of Goleta, Calif., scored four goals, including the gold-medal clincher with 1:56 remaining, as the East beat the North, 9-7, in women’s water polo. Shannon Endsley of UC Irvine scored with 13 seconds left for the final margin and ended up with a tournament-high 23 goals.
The festival’s first women’s weightlifting competition featured gold medal performances by Sibby Flowers of Carrollton, Ga., at 97 pounds; Victoria Futch of Longwood, Fla., at 105.5 pounds, and Robin Byrd of Newnan, Ga., at 114.5 pounds.
The West teams won the archery titles, led by individual gold medalists Ed Eliason and Denise Parker. Diane Simpson, a 1988 Olympian, won the gold in rhythmic gymnastics. In men’s team handball, the East beat the South, 30-23, and the North defeated the West, 17-14. In the women’s competition, the East defeated the South, 19-18, and the North stopped the West, 17-8.