National Sports Briefs
BETHESDA, Md. ó On a wild day for everyone around him, Tom Pernice Jr. kept it steady and simple Saturday for a 1-under 69 in the AT&T National that gave him a one-shot lead and a chance to win for the first time in seven years.
Steve Stricker, the runner-up a year ago, had a 66.
– ENDICOTT, N.Y. ó Argentina’s Eduardo Romero shot his second straight 7-under 65 on Saturday to take a one-shot lead over Fulton Allem and crowd favorite Joey Sindelar in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open.
– XTAPA, Mexico ó Annika Sorenstam won 11 skins and $165,000 to beat Lorena Ochoa on Saturday in an exhibition event, the Swedish star’s third straight victory over the top-ranked Mexican in the competition.
EUGENE, Ore. ó Tyson Gay tumbled to the ground at the start of his 200-meter quarterfinal heat at the U.S. Olympic track and field trials Saturday and had to be carted off the track.
Running in the seventh lane, Gay was speeding to the lead in the first turn, but on his 14th stride, something went wrong. He went airborne, fell, then laid on the ground in pain, grabbing his left thigh and grimacing.
Gay already had qualified for the Olympics in the 100 meters, but his availability for the games now will be determined by the severity of his injury.
Though he’s the defending world champion in the 200, trials rules call for the top three finishers to make the Olympic team ó no exceptions.
This was a stunning setback for the 25-year-old sprinter, who last week set the American record in the 100 at 9.77 seconds. In finals, he ran it in 9.68, the fastest time ever recorded, but not a world record because the tailwind was too strong.
– OMAHA, Neb. ó Beijing, rest easy. Gary Hall Jr. and his big mouth won’t be in the Olympics.The two-time sprint gold medalist missed out on a chance to defend his 50-meter freestyle title, finishing fourth in the U.S. trials Saturday night.
“It’s not an effort that I should be disappointed with. In fact, I’m really proud of it,” Hall said.
The 33-year-old maverick was beaten out by a couple of guys with names longer than the race itself: Garrett Weber-Gale and Ben Wildman-Tobriner, who earned the two spots. Cullen Jones finished third.
SPARTANBURG, S.C. ó Authorities say a woman was injured, but is expected to recover after she was struck by a car that went over a wall in a crash at Cherokee Speedway.
Driver Mike Duvall was at the half-mile dirt track when the incident happened Thursday night and told the Herald-Journal of Spartanburg that 23-year-old Stacy Million is blessed to have survived.
Duvall says fellow driver Josh Hoots was going more than 80 mph when he hit a retaining wall, then flew over it. Authorities say Million was hit by the car and knocked into a tow truck. She was taken to a hospital and is expected to recover.
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. ó Scott Dixon came into the weekend insisting it wasn’t going to be easy to make it four straight IndyCar victories at Watkins Glen International.
Looks as if he was right.
Ryan Briscoe gave Team Penske its fourth straight pole on the 3.4-mile, 11-turn circuit in upstate New York, supplanting veteran teammate Helio Castroneves. The Brazilian’s string of three in a row was ended by a broken throttle cable that sent him to the rear of the 26-car field for today’s race.
Justin Wilson, one of the nine drivers transitioning from the defunct Champ Car World Series to the newly unified IRL IndyCar Series, will start from second, followed by Ryan Hunter-Reay.
SAN DIEGO ó Former Chargers safety Terrence Kiel was killed after he was thrown from a Chevy sedan he was driving, police said Saturday.
Kiel, 27, was driving alone after leaving a party at about 10:15 Friday night when he hit a wall in San Diego’s upscale Scripps Ranch neighborhood and was thrown from the car.
PLUMELEC, France ó Alejandro Valverde of Spain won the first stage of the Tour de France on Saturday with a ride through flat country, the opening of a three-week race trying to restore its luster after years of doping scandals.
He broke away from the pack at the end of the 123-mile leg from Brest to Plumelec and now has the distinction of wearing the leader’s yellow jersey.
OKLAHOMA CITY ó First-round picks Russell Westbrook and D.J. White have signed multiyear contracts with Seattle SuperSonics.
Westbrook, a guard, was taken fourth overall out of UCLA.
SKELLEFTEA, Sweden ó Carli Lloyd scored on a deflected shot in the 39th minute Saturday to give the United States a 1-0 victory over Sweden in a women’s Olympic tuneup.
By Bret Strelow firstname.lastname@example.org Jordon Vaden slid his feet into the starting blocks and pressed his palms against the track.... read more