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December 12, 2008 | Corina Knoll, Knoll is a Times staff writer.
Pssst, China -- got a secret. Shannon Boxx isn't as scary as she looks. The U.S. women's national soccer team plays China at the Home Depot Center on Saturday. It might surprise China's team to know that Boxx, a U.S. defensive midfielder whose tackles can terrify, who shoots to kill, whose forehead is weirdly resilient (remember that game-winner she headed past you in January?) is, get this, a laugher. "I've just been enjoying myself so much," Boxx said after a recent practice.
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SPORTS
October 11, 2008 | Grahame L. Jones, Times Staff Writer
Coaches Bob Bradley and Sven-Goran Eriksson are treading two very different paths, but both are headed in the same direction -- to soccer's 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Bradley's U.S. national team plays Cuba today at RFK Stadium in Washington (4 p.m., ESPN Classic). With a win, the Americans will secure a place in the final round of qualifying in 2009, when six teams will vie for three spots at the World Cup, with a fourth going to a playoff.
SPORTS
August 24, 2008 | HELENE ELLIOTT
The medal on the green ribbon was Lisa Leslie's first golden Olympic souvenir. She won it in Atlanta in 1996, when she was 24 and wondering if she'd have to abandon basketball for modeling because there was no women's pro league in America where she could earn a living. The medal on the blue ribbon came from the 2000 Sydney Games. By then a star in the WNBA, she helped the U.S. women beat the hometown favorites for their second successive Olympic championship. The medal on the multi-colored ribbon is from Athens in 2004, when Leslie and Team USA extended their Olympic winning streak to 25 games, the last by again defeating Australia.
SPORTS
August 24, 2008 | Kevin Baxter, Times Staff Writer
BEIJING -- America's marathoners are getting faster. Problem is, so are those from the rest of the world. Samuel Kamau Wansiru set a blistering pace from the start today, wearing down the quickest Olympic field in history to win the marathon and become the first Kenyan to claim a gold medal in the event. U.S. runners Dathan Ritzenhein and Ryan Hall, though they were the first Americans in 34 years to run better than 2:13:00, finished ninth and 10th, respectively. Beneath a blazing sun, Wansiru chopped nearly three minutes off the Olympic record, finishing in 2 hours 6 minutes 32 seconds -- 44 seconds ahead of silver medalist Jaouad Gharib of Morocco.
SPORTS
August 22, 2008 | Kevin Baxter, Times Staff Writer
BEIJING -- For the better part of two days, as world champion Maris Strombergs watched Mike Day repeatedly blow away some of the best riders in BMX history, one thought kept coming back to him. "Second," he said, "is still good." He didn't have to settle for that, though, saving his best race of the competition for the winner-take-all final today to claim the first gold medal in Olympic men's BMX history. Day finished second, ahead of teammate Donny Robinson, while Jill Kintner took bronze in the women's event, giving the U.S. three of the six medals awarded in BMX's Olympic debut.
SPORTS
August 21, 2008 | Kevin Baxter, Times Staff Writer
BEIJING -- Mike Day's coronation as BMX cycling's first Olympic champion, which seemed so certain a day earlier, was put on hold after rain canceled today's semifinals and finals at the Laoshan Cycling Complex. With the rain falling before dawn and expected to continue until 6 a.m. Friday, the four-rider U.S. team never left the Olympic village. That proved to be a wise decision when the day's events were officially postponed at 8:45 a.m., about 15 minutes before the scheduled start.
SPORTS
August 17, 2008 | K.C. Johnson, Chicago Tribune
BEIJING -- The pink, blue, yellow and green ponchos that appeared early Sunday morning at a rainy Chaoyang Park Beach Volleyball Ground gave Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh's quarterfinal match a rainbow backdrop. And the second-seeded American duo continued its march toward a second pot of gold with a 21-18, 21-15 victory over third-seeded Ana Paula Conelly and Larissa Franca of Brazil. "When we saw the matchup, it steeled us because the Brazilians are so talented," Walsh said.
SPORTS
August 17, 2008
Sunday, Aug. 10 400 IM World record: 4:03.84 Former record: 4:05.25, Phelps, June 29, 2008 Mark Spitz time: Didn't compete Second place: Laszlo Cseh (Hungary), 4:06:16 Recap: It was really pretty effortless. Phelps trailed at the first 100 but then kicked it into overdrive to make it not much of a race. Phelps on Phelps: "I wasn't comfortable after the first 200. . . . I think it made my breaststroke stronger . . . coming home in the freestyle it's all adrenaline."
SPORTS
August 16, 2008 | Melissa Isaacson, Chicago Tribune
Cat Osterman was almost apologetic. "It was bound to happen," said the U.S. softball team pitcher. "I'm not too worried about it." And the crisis? The first hit off Osterman in the Beijing Games in 11 innings. Osterman also has struck out 21 in two victories, but U.S. Coach Mike Candrea apparently was trying to keep his players on their toes as the round-robin tournament heads into its last three days of play before the semifinals.
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