The following are odds and ends from the local sports scene.
'RAGING BULL' FACES
WALTERS IN MACAU
Vic "Raging Bull" Darchinyan will return to the ring looking to put another title belt around his waste on Saturday in Macau, China.
Darchinyan, who now makes a temporary residence in Glendale and trains at the Glendale Fighting Club under Edmond Tarverdyan, will challenge Nicholas Walters for Walters' World Boxing Assn. featherweight world championship at the Venetian Resort in Macau.
"We expect a great fight," Tarverdyan emailed while flying to Macau on Monday. "We know going up in weight we can depend on his power, and he knows that, and has been using a lot of technique and, also, he is a seasoned veteran and our main goal is to use our experience and beat him with our experience."
A victory by the 38-year-old Darchinyan (39-6-1, 28 knockouts) would not only hand the 28-old-year-old Walters (23-0, 19 KOs) his first loss, but Darchinyan would claim a title in a fourth weight division for his career, having already won titles in the flyweight, super flyweight and bantamweight classes.
"Vic looks great," stated Tarverdyan, who added that strength and conditioning coach Jesse Forbes has paid huge dividends for Darchinyan for two camps in a row. "[Darchinyan] looks very strong. Our main goal is to have a bigger and faster Darchinyan. Sparring has gone great."
Darchinyan is coming off a knockout loss to Nonito Donaire in November. Though Darchinyan lost, in most pundits' eyes, he looked good in the first eight rounds, before Donaire caught him in the ninth, and was far improved in his game plan and boxing than when he lost to Donaire in the combatants' first meeting in 2007. In November, Darchinyan was ahead on two cards against Donaire at the time of the knockout.
Donaire (32-2, 20 KOs) will headline the card against Simpiwe Vetyeka (26-2, 15 KOs) for the latter's WBA undisputed world title. The Donaire-Vetyeka bout will air on HBO via tape delay, while Darchinyan's bout and the remainder of the Top Rank "Featherweight Fury" card will stream live on www.toprank.tv beginning at 2:30 a.m. PDT on Saturday.
Fellow Glendale Fighting Club trainees Art "Lionheart" Hovhannisyan and Gabriel "The Ghost" Tolmajyan have upcoming bouts scheduled, as well.
The 32-year-old Hovhannisyan (17-1-2, nine KOs) will take on the 30-year-old Jonathan Maicelo (20-1, 12 KOs) July 11 at the Little Creek Casino Resort in Shelton, Wash. in an ESPN2 "Friday Night Fights" lightweight bout.
Four days after Hovhannisyan's bout, Tolmajyan (14-3-2, three KOs) will face Jason Sosa (12-1-3, eight KOs) on July 15 in Philadelphia.
VAQUEROS PICK UP ACCOLADES
Four members of the Glendale Community College softball team received All-Western State Conference Blue Division postseason recognition.
Freshman shortstop Jocelyn Zavala was named to the first team and freshman outfielder Rebecca Hernandez earned a spot on the second team. Freshman outfielder Ari Rea and sophomore outfielder Kelsie Ange received honorable mention.
Zavala flourished at the plate, batting .487 (55 for 113) with 13 doubles and 29 runs batted in. She also had two home runs, two triples, scored 29 runs and stole 11 bases in 38 games.
"We had four freshman shortstops coming into the season and she emerged from the pack," Glendale first-year Coach Sal Pizzo said. "She battled hitting in the third spot and she was consistent throughout the season."
Hernandez batted . 414 (41 for 99) with two home runs, six doubles and 12 runs batted in. Hernandez scored 32 runs and had 11 stolen bases.
Rea hit .326 (29 for 89) with five doubles, four triples, nine stolen bases and 16 runs batted in. Ange hit .280 (26 for 93) with four triples, 15 runs and 15 runs batted in.
The Vaqueros finished 15-24, 5-16 in the division.
GAELS NAB LEAGUE HONORS
A pair of Holy Family softball players were recently named to the All-Horizon League team.
Junior pitcher Amy Brennan was selected to the first team. Brennan went 5-8 and struck out 78 while posting a 2.70 earned-run average. At the plate, she batted .436 (17 for 39) and drove in six runs.
"She deserved it," Holy Family first-year Coach Burt Ogata said. "She had three good pitches in her change-up, screwball and curveball.
"She worked hard at it and was always serious."
Sophomore shortstop Tabitha Ruiz earned a spot on the second team. Ruiz batted .409 (18 for 44) with a team-leading four home runs and 19 runs batted in. She also scored 15 runs for the Gaels, who finished 5-11 and 3-5 in league to tie for third place.