Advertisement - Click to support our sponsors.

Star-Bulletin Sports

Friday, March 31, 2000

O L Y M P I C _ S P O R T S

Associated Press
Brian Viloria of Waipahu, right, congratulates
Ivan Calderon of Puerto Rico.

Loss sidetracks
Viloria’s Olympic quest

By Pat Bigold


By midnight last night in Tampa, Fla., Brian Viloria said he was again feeling like the world amateur champion he is.

"I'm mad at myself and hungrier than ever now," said the Waipahu resident who was upset in his 106-pound semifinal bout by Ivan Calderon of Puerto Rico last night in the America's Olympic Qualifier at the Florida State Fairgrounds. "The true champions are the ones who will get back on their feet and keep moving on."

Moving on means moving on to Tijuana, Mexico, where the next qualifier will be held, April 17-22. Viloria must gain at least a runner-up finish there to become Hawaii's first Olympic boxer in 44 years.

Failing that, he must make the finals in the third and final qualifier, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, May 23-28.

"It's too bad I lost my fight at this type of tournament, at this moment in time," Viloria said. "But going back to training, still have my head up high and I still have the same confidence. I just want to tell everybody back home, I'll be going to Sydney, no doubt about that."

Viloria, 3-2 in bouts fought in Mexico, may have to face archrival and Mexican favorite Liberio Romero a sixth time.

Viloria scored a close 10-8 win over Romero in the quarterfinals in Tampa, and is 3-2 against him.

"It's going to be awfully hard beating Romero in Mexico," said U.S. head coach Tom Mustin last night. "I'm hoping Romero gets a draw on the other side of the bracket."

Viloria said he feels more confidence since beating Romero a third time and believes he can beat him a fourth.

Viloria will forego a trip to Barcelona for an Adidas photo shoot next week and also skip a community relations appearance on behalf of his school, Northern Michigan University, so that he can proceed directly to the Olympic Training Center in San Diego.

If he'd won, Viloria had planned to come home to Hawaii for a vacation.

Viloria had won 19 fights in a row, including the world amateur championships. He had decisioned Calderon, 9-5, last year in a dual meet.

"I feel sorry for Brian," said U.S. teammate and roommate, 119-pounder Clarence Vinson of Washington, D.C.

ride than have them in the qualifiers with us," said Mustin last night.

Sydney 2000 Olympics

E-mail to Sports Editor

Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]

© 2000 Honolulu Star-Bulletin