Sports Briefs

Posted: Sunday, June 10, 2001

New leader in Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby

Don Uribe of Carmel Valley, Calif., landed a 250.2-pound halibut Wednesday, taking over the lead in the Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby.

Uribe caught the lunker while fishing with Captain Mike Swan with Silver Fox Charters in Homer.

Uribe's catch surpasses the 197-pound fish caught by the Derby's former leader.

Birch Ridge junior golf clinic set for Monday

Three weeks of junior golf clinics start Monday at Birch Ridge Golf Course in Soldotna.

Week one is dedicated to beginners ages 8 to 10 or older. Week two is for intermediate golfers ages 12 to 14 or golfers with the appropriate skill level to participate. Week three is for advanced golfers.

All sessions are under the direction of Birch Ridge head pro Tom Walsh. For more information, contact the pro shop at 262-5270.

Homer summer running club starting up

Runners looking for company and other runners to share ideas with can join the Summer Running Club in Homer. Both teens and adults are welcome to join the club, which meets at the Homer High School track on Sundays at 3 p.m. and on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. through August 14.

Twins drop a pair of games to Bartlett

The American Legion Post 20 Twins dropped a pair of games to Bartlett Saturday in Anchorage. The Twins lost the first game 7-2 and the second game 5-2. A full report will be available in Monday's Clarion.

Laila Ali edges Jacqui Frazier-Lyde

VERONA, N.Y. -- She didn't float much like a butterfly, but Laila Ali stung just hard enough like a bee.

The youngest of Muhammad Ali's seven daughters earned a majority decision Friday night over Jacqui Frazier-Lyde. The fight, held at Turning Stone Casino and promoted as Ali-Frazier IV, was a slugfest from start to finish. The daughters of two of boxing's greats tried for the one-punch knockout their daddies never mustered against each other in their three memorable fights in the 1970s.

This was no ''Thrilla in Manila,'' but it easily was the toughest bout for either woman in their brief careers. And it was fought at a fierce pace, with both slugging it out in the middle of the ring almost incessantly.

''I really didn't know what she could take or what to expect,'' Ali said. ''I know I wasn't doing what I was supposed to do, so I had a lot on my mind. It was rough. You guys just don't know. It tells me I need to get back in the gym.''

Frazier-Lyde stormed after Ali in the first round, intent on scoring the knockout she had promised. Ali withstood the barrage, abandoning her strategy, and countered with several shots to Frazier-Lyde's head.

Joe Frazier and his wife, Florence, were at ringside, but Muhammad Ali had a prior commitment and couldn't attend. He had plenty of advice for Laila, nonetheless.

''I talked to him before the fight,'' she said. ''He told me to use my arm distance, jab, drop the right hand, move, and don't get into a brawl with her.

''I know he's going to be like, 'That Laila, she did everything I told her not to do.' ''

The second round produced more of the same, and it ended with both slamming each other while standing toe to toe.

In the third, Ali stunned Frazier-Lyde with two hard lefts to the head, knocked out her mouthpiece and finished the round with a six-punch combination that staggered Frazier-Lyde some more.

But even though Frazier-Lyde, a 39-year-old mother of three, appeared winded at the end of each round, she answered the bell every time with enthusiasm.

''I thought it could go either way,'' Frazier-Lyde said. ''I have to look at it to see. I wasn't surprised. She was very aggressive and had a lot of heart, basically what I was expecting.''

Ali landed a series of rights to Frazier-Lyde's head near the end of the fourth round and in the fifth began dancing as her father once did. She even stopped and stared for a few seconds at her tiring foe, then landed a good left with 30 seconds left as she began assuming some control.

The sixth and seventh rounds were just about even, and Frazier-Lyde, her left eye swollen, again tried gamely for that knockout in the eighth, even wobbling Ali briefly with a hard left hand.

''She's wild,'' the 23-year-old Ali said after upping the record of her 20-month pro career to 10-0. ''It's always a little surprising when you're actually in the ring with the person fighting them. I know she had feeling behind this fight.''

When the decision was announced, Joe Frazier entered the ring and hugged his daughter. It was her first loss after seven straight knockouts, and she was already thinking about Ali-Frazier V.

''The Ali camp did not want a rematch called, but maybe public demand will change that. Let's get it on,'' Frazier-Lyde said. ''I feel fantastic. My family is here and I feel like a winner.''

Judge Frankie Adams scored the fight 79-73 for Ali, Tommy Hicks had it even at 76, and Don Ackerman had it 77-75 for Ali, who weighed 160 3/4 pounds. Frazier-Lyde, who has lost nearly 50 pounds since she began boxing, weighed 164.

The bout attracted a great deal of attention worldwide, with more than 300 media credentials issued. It took place in an 8,000-seat tent promoters erected on a parking lot behind the casino, and just about every seat was filled at fight time.

All the attention also helped produce a nice return for the two women. Each was guaranteed a six-figure payday.

Will there be another?

''She fought hard, a good strong fight,'' said Ali. ''I'm glad I won fighting her fight, but I want to move on. I want some championship belts around my waist.''

As Joe Frazier got set to leave, he said he put his longstanding feud with Muhammad Ali behind. He seemed wistful that Ali missed the night.

''It's over. I just don't want no more problems,'' Frazier said. ''If I see him tomorrow, I'll say, 'Hey man, let's get along. Forgive me and I'll forgive you.' I'm tired of the harsh, dirty words. I don't want to go back to that no more.''

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