Sports briefs: May 7

May 7, 2013 

UK sports

Harris first UK women's golfer to make SEC all-freshman team

Kentucky women's golfer Sarah Harris was named to the Southeastern Conference's All-Freshman Team, the first player in school history to earn the honor.

"I'm really honored to have been selected to the team and to be the first UK player makes it even more special," Harris said. "It's really exciting to see hard work pay off. My freshman year has been challenging but fun and I can't wait for the future of Kentucky women's golf."

Harris, a Hermitage, Tenn., native, has competed in eight of the Cats' nine tournaments this season, finishing second on the squad in stroke average at 75.79. The highlight of her season was a second-place finish at the SEC Championships. That led the Cats to their best finish at the league championships in 20 years, a tie for fifth.

"It's a great honor and I could not be more proud of her," Coach Golda Johansson Borst said. "She has worked very hard on her game and it's been great to see how much she has grown from her first day on campus until now."

■ Kentucky's men's golf team was selected for the NCAA Regionals for the first time since 2009. The Cats are part of a 14-team field that will play at The Blessing Golf Club in Fayetteville, Ark., on May 16-18. Defending national champion Texas and host Arkansas are also in the field. Murray State's Patrick Newcomb, a senior out of Marshall County, will play in the tournament as an individual.


College basketball Kansas mum on McLemore allegation

Kansas athletics officials are reviewing allegations that the former AAU basketball coach of Ben McLemore received cash payments aimed at steering the star freshman to a sports agent.

AAU coach Darius Cobb told USA Today that he received $10,000 in two payments from Rodney Blackstock, the founder and CEO of Hooplife Academy in Greensboro, N.C.

Kansas Athletics Director Sheahon Zenger issued a statement Saturday saying that the university had received an inquiry about the relationship between the McLemore family and Blackstock. The information was being reviewed and officials would "process it" with the NCAA and the Big 12 Conference if necessary. "We are not in a position to comment further at this time," Zenger said.

McLemore, a second-team All-American, is expected to be an NBA lottery pick in June after breaking the Jayhawks' freshman scoring record held by Danny Manning. McLemore averaged nearly 16 points for a team that went 31-6 and won a share of its ninth straight Big 12 championship, and he announced last month that he was leaving Kansas after one season.

The statement issued Monday by Cobb said Kansas and coach Bill Self "had no knowledge or involvement dealing with this issue."


Golf

Couples, Montgomery inducted into Hall

About the only thing Fred Couples and Colin Montgomerie had in common was a golf swing they could trust for a lifetime.

Couples became the first American to reach No. 1 in the world and won the Masters by a blade of grass that kept his ball from trickling into Rae's Creek. Montgomerie found fame on the European Tour, where he won the Order of Merit a record seven times in a row, though he never won a major, a glaring hole in his credentials.

They shared the stage Monday night when both were inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame, along with former U.S. Open champion and broadcaster Ken Venturi, former European Tour executive director Ken Schofield and two-time British Open champion and architect Willie Park Jr.

"I never thought about the Hall of Fame as a kid," Couples said. "I never made a putt at the golf course ... it was always to win the tournament that was on TV that week, but I never made a putt to say, 'Wow, if I make this I'm in the Hall of Fame.' No one does that. But when you get in there, obviously, I'm lucky to be in there. I barely got in here, but I'm in. And it's quite an honor."

The election of this year's class was not without some debate.

Couples was elected on the PGA Tour ballot ahead of Mark O'Meara and Davis Love III, both of whom either won more tournaments or more majors. Couples received only 51 percent of the vote, a record low for the PGA Tour ballot. It takes 65 percent to get elected, though there is a loophole that if no one gets 65 percent, one player is elected provided he receives at least 50 percent.

Montgomerie won 31 times on the European Tour, the most of any British player, and he was a stalwart in the Ryder Cup. He never won on the biggest stage, however. Montgomerie lost the 1994 U.S. Open and the 1995 PGA Championship in a playoff. He was second to Ernie Els again in the 1997 U.S. Open at Congressional. And the most painful of all came in 2006 at Winged Foot, when he made double bogey from the middle of the 18th fairway and finished one shot behind Geoff Ogilvy.

"That's the one that hurts," Montgomerie said of Winged Foot. "The four or five others, really, somebody happened to beat me. The 2006 Winged Foot, I beat myself. And that's where it hurts most. So that has taken the most to recover from."


Baseball

Shutout extends Legends' win streak to 6

Lexington Legends starter Bryan Brickhouse and Alec Mills combined to limit the Lakewood BlueClaws to three hits in a 2-0 victory in New Jersey. The Legends' sixth straight victory puts them one game under .500 at 15-16.

Brickhouse, who pitched 62⁄3 innings with nine strikeouts, took a no-hitter into the sixth inning and earned his first victory of the season. He's 1-3 despite compiling a 2.41 ERA over six starts.

Mills finished the game and earned his fourth save.

All 'A' Classic rescheduled for Tuesday

The Touchstone Energy All "A" Classic state baseball tournament, postponed by rain on Sunday, will be played Tuesday at Whitaker Bank Ballpark. Newport Central Catholic will play Hazard in the semifinals at 2 p.m., followed by Bethlehem taking on Danville. The championship game is set for 6:30 p.m.


Football Forbes: Tebow most influential athlete

Even on the unemployment line, Tim Tebow remains a popular presence. The former New York Jets quarterback, cut last week after one disappointing season and now a free agent, was selected as America's most influential athlete, according to a survey released Monday by Forbes.com. Tebow had the most influence on fans, according to 29 percent of respondents, finishing ahead of Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps (25 percent), Jamaican track star Usain Bolt (23 percent) and Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter (22 percent).

■ Four Arksansas players, including quarterback Brandon Mitchell, were granted their release and intend to transfer. Mitchell competed with sophomore Brandon Allen throughout the spring to replace the departed Tyler Wilson, but the senior was listed as the second-team QB after the team's spring game. Also leaving the school are defensive end Austin Flynn, safety Defonta Lowe and running back Keante Minor.


The last word

So much for overshadowing your rivals, Mr. President. Republican Sen. Saxby Chambliss didn't seem fazed by a rare congressional invitation to golf with President Barack Obama on Monday, sinking a hole-in-one on the par-three 11th hole. The ace shot helped lead Chambliss and GOP teammate Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee to victory over the Democratic duo of Obama and Colorado Sen. Mark Udall on an outing meant to strengthen ties between the president and Congress. Chambliss, who plans to retire next year, said he will frame the ball and the flag:

"If my children want it one of these days, they can get it. Otherwise it will probably be in the nursing home with my wife and me."

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