Feb. 18, 2014
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - After two weeks of hard-hitting preliminary action, 20 members of the Air Force boxing team will compete in the finals of the 56th-annual Wing Open Championships this Thursday (Feb. 20), under the lights of Clune Arena. Highlighted by bouts in 10 weight classes, these contenders are ready to earn a spot on the Academy team that will compete at the regional and national meet.
Of the 20 finalists on the card, five are previous champions and four others have competed in the Wing Open finals. Past champions include junior Roy Taylor (2013, 2012), sophomore Jacob Berggren (2013), senior James Monk (2013), senior Denis Vorobyov (2013) and senior Zac Spranger (2011, 2012), while sophomore Mateus Arcano (2013), senior Ethan Salgado (2013, 2012), senior Sean Cork (2013) and sophomore Gytenis Borusas (2013).
Highlighting the roster of first-time finalists are seven freshmen, including Tim Tyson (112 pounds), Pedro Barrientes (147 pounds), Samuel Sheikh (156 pounds), Javaughn Baltrip (185 pounds), Laurynas Galdikas (195 pounds), Stevan Bacchur-Grant (heavyweight) and Matas Leckas (heavyweight). Other first-time finalists are sophomore Peter Coote (132 pounds), junior Nick Holguin (165 pounds) and both members of the 175-pound final - sophomore Giorgio Zendali and junior Brandon Pitts.
WING OPEN LINEUP
112-lbs.: Mateus Arcano vs. Tim Tyson
132-lbs.: Roy Taylor vs. Peter Coote
139-lbs.: Ethan Salgado vs. Jacob Berggren
147-lbs.: Sean Cork vs. Pedro Barrientes
156-lbs.: James Monk vs. Samuel Sheikh
165-lbs.: Denis Vorobyov vs. Nick Holguin
175-lbs.: Max Zendali vs. Brandon Pitts
185-lbs.: Gytenis Borusas vs. Javaughn Baltrip
195-lbs.: Zac Spranger vs. Laurynas Galdikas
Hywt.: Stevan Bacchur-Grant vs. Matas Leckas
The 119-pound and 125-pound bouts are uncontested, with Adam Sumait and Stephen Bittner receiving the respective titles.
The winners of the Wing Open will form the nucleus of the Air Force team that will compete at the upcoming regional and national championships. The Falcons have won 19 of 33 NCBA national team titles, including the 2012 trophy.
The Wing Open Championship finals are slated to begin at 7 pm., in Clune Arena. Admission is free and the finals will be streamed live on GoAirForceFalcons.com.