Pairings Set For the 2004 Wing Open
March 2, 2004
The Air Force boxing team has determined its final pairings for the 2004 Wing Open Championships, which will take place this Sunday (March 7). This year's event, beginning at 5 p.m., in the Cadet Field House, promises to be a competitive evening, featuring six defending Wing Open champions.
The Wing Open Tournament began two weeks ago with a group of 54 hopefuls. Throughout the intense action of the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds, the group has been whittled down to the final 20 that will compete in their respective championship bouts. Each finalist will be vying for a berth on the team that will represent the Academy in regional and national competitions.
There will be ten bouts disputed in the finals, with six defending champions and five who finished second last year.
Senior Jeb Fredrickson and freshman Eziekiel Ignaco will compete in the 125-pound weight class, while defending Wing Open champion senior Geoff Woolf will match-up against classmate Joshua Park in the 132-pound weight class. Junior Blake Baldi will take on sophomore Luis Pena at 139 pounds. Pena was the runner-up in the 132-pound division last year, before moving up to his current weight class. Junior Ryan Dorsey-Spitz will take on sophomore Marcos Gonzales in the 147-pound bout. Both boxers finished in the runner-up positions last year, as Dorsey-Spitz took second at 139 pounds and Gonzales was second at 147 pounds.
Defending national champion, senior Clell Knight, will be making his first appearance at the Wing Open in the 156-pound weight class. Formerly competing at 165-pounds, Knight is a two-time Wing Open Champion. He will match-up with classmate Troy Mangum. Also moving down in weight is senior Leif Nordhagen, who will be facing junior Mike Sackenheim at the 165-pound division. Nordhagen won the Wing Open last year at 175 pounds and finished as a runner-up at the NCBA national championships.
The remaining four bouts feature two champions and two second-place finishers. Junior Augustin Kamdem and senior James Mitchell will spar at 175-pounds. Kamdem finished as a runner-up to Nordhagen last year in the finals. Defending Wing Open champion, senior Ryan Coates, looks to defend his title against junior Chris Collins in the 185-pound division, while sophomore Oscar Casillas hopes to claim the title that eluded him last year, when he takes on senior Will Watson at 195 pounds. Defending heavyweight champion senior Brian Trumble will take on Falcon football freshman Joe Keller in the evening's final bout.
Freshman Willie Lloyd (112-lbs.) and junior Darren Smith (119-lbs.) are both going unopposed this year. Lloyd is a two-time Academy Boxer of the Week, earning a pair of decisions in National Collegiate Boxing Association matches. Smith, the defending Wing Open champion at 119-pounds, is coming off of an impressive performance last weekend in Reno, Nev., defeating Nevada's Diego Moki.
The event is free to the public, with donations going to the Colorado Springs Cancer Center.
FINAL PAIRINGS FOR THE 2004 WING OPEN FINALS
* Wing Open Runner Up