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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Tuesday, March 8, 2005

Hawai'i's Au is Sullivan finalist

Advertiser News Services

Hawai'i karate standout Elisa Au was named one of 10 finalists yesterday for the Sullivan Award, given to the nation's top amateur athlete.


Au, 23, took up karate at age 5. Eighteen years later, she's at the top of her sport. Au earned two gold medals in the AAU/USA national championships, where she was the women's grand champ, and two gold medals in the USA National Karate-do Federation championships.

Last November, Au won two gold medals, in her weight class and in the open-weight division, in the biennial world championships in Monterrey, Mexico.

Other Sullivan finalists are Olympians Michael Phelps (swimming), Carly Patterson and Paul Hamm (gymnastics), Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart, Natalie Coughlin (swimming); Steven Lopez (taekwondo); Cael Sanderson (wrestling); Andre Ward (boxing); and Jeremy Wariner (track and field). Voting on the USA Today Web site will help determine the winner, who will be announced April 13.