Tszyu stops Chavez in sixth
Phoenix Kostya Tszyu defended his World Boxing Council super lightweight title Saturday with a sixth-round technical knockout of aging Julio Cesar Chavez. Despite the support of the crowd, the 38-year-old Chavez was no match for the 30-year-old champion. After Tszyu (25-1-1) knocked Chavez down with a right hand, the six-time world champion in four weight classes staggered to his feet and fought on. Tszyu pinned him to the ropes, pounding Chavez (103-5-2) when referee Bobby Ferrara stopped the fight, which had been seen as such a mismatch that Las Vegas bookmakers would not take bets on it. Each fighter earned $1.25 million.
Montoya on Target with fifth pole
Cicero, Ill. Coming off a victory last Sunday in the Michigan 500, Juan Montoya was the fastest of 17 drivers who surpassed the track qualifying record Saturday at the Target Grand Prix. Montoya drove his Toyota-powered Lola to a lap of 167.567 on the 1.029-mile oval and earning his series-leading fifth pole of the season. Helio Castroneves took the other front-row position with a lap of 167.370. Tony Kanaan, still hampered by a cast on the left forearm he broke in crash last month, took the third spot in the 24-car field at 167.340, followed by Kenny Brack at 166.602.
Coulthard takes pole position
Hockenheim, Germany David Coulthard took advantage of the few moments it wasn't raining Saturday to win the pole for the German Grand Prix. Michael Schumacher joined his closest rival on the front row by clocking the second quickest time, just before the end of the qualifying session. Coulthard set the early pace, just before the rain made conditions more difficult. He drove his McLaren-Mercedes around the circuit in one minute 45.697, a time that was never in danger.
Ray wins first national title
St. Louis While the 1996 Olympians were showing some rust to go with their gold, Elise Ray, Kristen Maloney, Vanessa Atler and Jamie Dantzscher proved they're up to the task of bringing home a medal from Sydney. Ray ended Maloney's two-year run as national champion, narrowly winning with 76.987 points at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships. Ray was just 0.275 points ahead of Maloney, who finished with 76.712 points. Dantzscher was third with 75.700, and Atler was fourth with 75.412. Shannon Miller and Jaycie Phelps skipped Saturday night's all-around finals with injuries and will petition for a spot at next month's Olympic trials. That cut the Magnificent Seven to three Amy Chow was sixth, Dominique Moceanu was eighth and Dominique Dawes ninth. The top 12 finishers at nationals advanced to next month's Olympic trials, where a committee will choose a six-member team.
Williams to face Davenport
Stanford, Calif. Venus Williams hopes the third time is the charm at the Bank of the West Classic. The second-seeded Williams beat No. 9 seed Anna Kournikova 6-4, 7-5 Saturday to advance to her third consecutive final in the tournament. She's lost the two previous finals to top-seeded Lindsay Davenport, who also reached the finals with a 7-5, 7-6 (2) victory over Monica Seles. Williams took a 5-1 advantage in the second set before Kournikova stormed back to 5-4.
Chang advances to final
Los Angeles Michael Chang, showing the grit that has marked his 12-year pro career, overcame hard-serving Justin Gimelstob 3-6, 6-3, 6-0 Saturday to reach the Mercedes-Benz Cup final. After having his serve broken twice in losing the first set, Chang rallied from a 1-3 deficit in the second set and went on to win 11 straight games to close out the 2-hour, 6-minute match. In the other semifinal, Jan-Michael Gambill defeated Arnaud Clement 3-6, 6-0, 6-3.
Corretja to face Alvarez in final
Kitzbuehel, Austria With top-seeded Yevgeny Kafelnikov eliminated earlier in the day, Alex Corretja and Emilio Alvarez advanced to the finals of the $700,000 Generali Open. Second-seeded Corretja beat Agustin Calleri of Argentina 6-3, 6-7 (3), 6-2 in the semifinals Saturday, the first rain-free day of the competition. In today's finals, Corretja will face compatriot Alvarez, who beat another Spaniard, tenth-seeded Francisco Clavet, 6-3, 7-5 in the other semifinal. Earlier Saturday, in quarterfinal matches that were started Friday but interrupted by rain, Alvarez beat Nicolas Lapentti of Ecuador 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (1) and Clavet knocked out Kafelnikov of Russia 6-3, 6-2
Bruguera advances to finals
San Marino Sergi Bruguera defeated Diego Nargiso 6-7 (4), 6-1, 6-3 on Saturday to set up an all-Spanish final in the $350,000 San Marino Open. Today's final will pit Bruguera against Alex Calatrava, who advanced when opponent Andrei Medvedev withdrew with an ankle injury.