Lewis' faith in Pettway rewarded

September 19, 1994|By PHIL JACKMAN

Only the thousands of people who know Mack Lewis, most of whom he has trained in the manly art of self-defense in his gym over on Broadway, knew what Vincent Pettway was talking about the other night on television after he won a world title from Italy's Gianfranco Rosi.

Pettway, now 37-4 with 30 knockouts, pummeled the former International Boxing Federation junior middleweight titleholder before putting him down for good at the end of the fourth round. Ecstatic with his success after some trying times in his decade-long pro career, Pettway admitted, "I'm more happy for Mr. Mack. He's waited over 50 years for this [a world championship]."

Building a reputation for the inability to take a solid whack a few years ago when he was stopped a couple of times, Pettway (and his manager/trainer) knew better. "Anyone gets hit with a properly timed and delivered punch is going to go," said the fighter.

Lewis, who builds men first, then fighters, never wavered in his faith in Pettway. "He always listened and learned. His confidence was almost unshakable," Mack said. It showed in the manner in which he went after Rosi, sort of a damn-the-torpedoes, full-speed-ahead approach.

As noted writer Paul Gallico put it: "The single-mindedness necessary to fight one's way to the top, in no matter what sport, is something not shared by the majority of mortals." Vince and Mack, take several bows.

* For a competition that started out like the Grambling-Morgan State football game here Saturday, the visitors leading 38-0 after just one quarter, the Presidents Cup matches recovered nicely over the last two days. Hang your empty head, Channel 11, for not joining the fun.

After taking the first five better-ball matches, and holding that 5-0 advantage through five foursome matches Friday afternoon, it appeared as if this one would end, 87-12, too. But the "Internationals" delivered some scares and now's the time to work on and improve the format.

During Saturday's matches, for instance, Corey Pavin had to walk from the 18th green and one match directly to the first tee into another. This after getting up at 5:30 in the morning, fighting traffic to the course an hour away and in rough heat and humidity. Did someone forget this region more often than not has a couple weeks of weather imitating July and August?

These guys aren't used to playing 36 holes, much less doing it back-to-back in strength-sapping weather near the end of a golf season that only gives the appearance of ending sometime in December.

* You have to ask yourself, where would Mark ("Make It Happen," not "Do It Now") Duffner be if he didn't take the time to come up with these jazzy descriptions for the things the Maryland football team does on the field?

In constant search for a running game to go with his "Red Storm" aerial show, doubts began to surface about the goal ever being accomplished, seeing as how the team insisted upon lining up in TC its one-back offensive set. One back's fine if the back is Jim Brown, Gale Sayers or Red Grange, probably.

Enter "Black Thunder" in the Terps' 24-13 victory over West Virginia: More than one runner back there providing deception, negating the defense's ability to key on one man and perhaps even playing a main role in the interference for the ball carrier.

The Maryland defensive platoon, after holding the Mountaineers to 300 yards less than that registered by Duke and Florida State, obviously begs for a nickname now. How about "Little Round Top?"

* The annual fall show buyer's guide is in the October issue of Runner's World. It lists the 22 best training shoes (in four categories with a top model of $170). The ones to check out are the Ascis Gel-Legacy at $58 and the Reebok Pyro at $55.

* The battle of the unbeatens, Dana Rosenblatt (21-0) and Frankie Savannah (15-0), for the World Boxing Council intercontinental junior middleweight title at the Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro Friday is being carried by ESPN. The semi-windup bout for the Maryland State 154-pound title pitting Andrew Council (18-2) and Keith Holmes (23-1) also will be on the card starting at 9 p.m.

The man opposing undefeated Derrell Coley (25-0) when he puts his North American Boxing Federation welterweight crown on the line at the D.C. Armory tomorrow night (USA Network, 9 p.m.) is Lorenzo Smith (24-2). The co-feature, hometown products Reggie Green (16-0) vs. Darryl Tyson (42-6) for the NABF junior welterweight title, figures to be even better.

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