Olympics

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Mariah Bahe is a fourth-generation boxer from Chinle on the Navajo Nation. The 16-year-old holds several national titles and is one of only a handful of female Native Americans in the sport. She dreams of becoming the first Indigenous female boxer to ever make the U.S. Olympic team ahead of the 2024 games in Paris. A new documentary chronicles her life and struggles as well as her victory earlier this year at the National Silver Gloves Tournament. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius produced this profile about the documentary, Bahe’s lifelong love of the sport and her family’s deep roots in boxing.


Justin Regan

In the wee hours of the morning tomorrow, the U.S. Men’s Curling team will play for the gold medal against Sweden. The sport has been the darling of this Winter Olympics. It’s a quirky game some people call shuffleboard on ice and it’s taking up a lot of space on social media. Curling does not have historical roots in Arizona. But there are some cold weather transplants who have a deep connection to the game. In this audio postcard, we hear from a curling enthusiast trying to bring a piece of the sport to the southwest, a former competitor and a member of Olympic curling royalty. 


HYPO2

Flagstaff has long been a destination for elite athletes to train at high altitude. From swimmers at the Wall Aquatic Center to runners on the trails, working out at 7,000 feet can increase oxygen-carrying red blood cells by 4 or 5 percent. Now, new research shows the longer athletes train at high elevation, the better the results. Dan Bergland is a sports physiologist at HYPO2, Flagstaff’s high-altitude training camp. 


Aaron Granillo

This weekend, much of the sports world turns its attention to college basketball’s March Madness. But there’s another sporting event going on, and this one has Olympic gold on the line. The Special Olympics World Games are in Austria this year, and will be nationally televised on ESPN. Arizona is sending three athletes – all from Flagstaff. Arizona Public Radio’s Aaron Granillo introduces us to one of them, Deven Taylor, a two-time Olympic cross-country skier. A former ambassador for the games, Taylor shines a spotlight on athletes who are often overlooked and stigmatized.


Guor Marial is a runner.  He glides around a blue turf oval track. His steps are quick and light.  His back gleams with sweat in the July morning sun. He jokes with his training partner.

“Tired…that’s life man. Yeah, that’s life,” he laughs.

“He doesn’t mind because it is part of the game,” his training partner Fidele Jefferson tells me. “ Tired and keeps going.”

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