Originally created 03/09/06



Michaux takes first in writing contest

Scott Michaux, sports columnist for The Augusta Chronicle, won a first-place award in the Golf Writers Association of America annual writing contest.

Michaux won in the daily special projects category for his series of articles on Phil Mickelson's 2004 Masters Tournament victory.

Michaux and other winners will be honored at the organization's annual awards dinner April 5 in Augusta.

Michaux and The Augusta Chronicle were also honored in the Associated Press Sports Editors annual contest.

The Chronicle, competing in the 40,000-100,000 circulation category, received a top-10 honor in the special sections category.

Michaux also landed a top-10 honor in the Projects category.


Culpepper wants to be traded, released

In Minneapolis, Daunte Culpepper's shaky relationship with the Minnesota Vikings deteriorated further Wednesday when the quarterback said he had asked to be released if the team fails to trade him.

"If a trade does not happen then I am asking the Vikings to terminate my contract as soon as possible," Culpepper said in an e-mail to reporters.

Culpepper said he had asked the Vikings if he could speak to interested teams on his own behalf. He said Minnesota denied his request.

He said he appreciated that the team's new owner, Zygi Wilf, was willing to pay him a $6 million bonus due later this month.

"However, because of the fundamental differences I have with management regarding the approach to my personal and professional life, I think it is the best business decision for both parties to go our separate ways," Culpepper said.


Whitfield will fight before home crowd

Rayonta Whitfield is bringing ESPN to Augusta.

Whitfield (11-0, 6 KOs) will be taking on Fidencio Reyes (9-0, 3 KOs) live on ESPN's Wednesday Night Fights on April 19 at Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center. This is the first time that Whitfield has fought professionally in his hometown.

The fight will be an 8-round bantamweight bout and is just one of six on the card.

College Softball

Jags senior earns conference honor

Augusta State's Jennifer Tomlinson was named Peach Belt Conference Player of the Week.

The senior hit .539 with three home runs and six RBI for the Jaguars. Five of her seven hits were for extra bases. In four Peach Belt games she hit .625 with four RBI and two home runs.

- USC Aiken (14-6) was pounded for 26 runs, 10-4 and 16-0, in a non-conference sweep by Wingate.


Collins becomes registry's chairman

Pete Collins, the Augusta Country Club director of tennis, was elected chairman of the Master Professionals for the Professional Tennis Registry in February.

Among the 12,000 internationally certified professionals, only 24 have attained Master Pro status. He was one of the original eight Master Pros selected in 1995.


Rested mushers on to race's next stop

In Nikolai, Alaska, after resting several hours, the Iditarod leaders headed past open swamps on a mostly flat and well-traveled trail to the town of McGrath in the 1,100-mile race from Anchorage to Nome.

Four-time winner Doug Swingley of Lincoln, Mont., held his lead as the first musher to leave from the checkpoint in the riverside village of Nikolai.

He left Tuesday night as a steady snowfall coated about 30 other dog teams sleeping on beds of straw next to the Kuskokwim River.


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