Course-record 64 helps Haas rally for Senior Players victory
Jay Haas charged past Tom Watson to win the Senior Players Championship by a stroke, birdieing the 18th hole Sunday to match the course record with a 6-under 64 in the final Champions Tour major of the season. The 60-year-old Watson was tying to become the oldest major winner on the 50-and-over tour. But after making only one bogey in the first three rounds at Baltimore Country Club in Timonium, Md., he had three in the final round en route to a 70.
"All day, I was right there," Haas said. "I missed some very makable putts on the front nine, and I was very disappointed in that. But I felt like I was going to get some more, the way I was hitting it and the way I felt today. I had a nice calm about me, and Tom didn't go nuts behind me and shoot 3 or 4 or 5 under himself."
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Haas finished at 13-under 267 for his third senior major title. He has 14 career Champions Tour victories, also winning the Greater Hickory Classic two weeks ago.
"From tee to green, I could not play better," he said. "Under the conditions and under the circumstances, a major tournament on a championship golf course, that was the best I got."
PGA playoff delayed by darkness
Matt Kuchar and Vaughn Taylor were still tied after two holes in a sudden-death playoff at the Turning Stone Resort Championship when play was suspended Sunday in Verona, N.Y., because of darkness, forcing a Monday finish. Kuchar and Taylor birdied the first extra hole and parred the second. They will resume play at 8:30 a.m. on the 13th tee. Taylor, the second-round leader, began the day three shots off the lead and shot a 6-under 66 to match Kuchar (69) at 17-under 271.
■ Lorena Ochoa successfully defended her Navistar LPGA Classic title, overcoming early troubles to shoot a 2-under 70 on Sunday for a four-stroke victory over Michelle Wie and Brittany Lang. Ochoa finished at 18-under 270 on The Senator course at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail's Capitol Hill complex in Prattville, Ala., to snap an 11-start winless streak dating to the Corona Championship in late April. Ochoa wiped out her three-stroke lead coming into the day with a bogey and double bogey in the first five holes. She erased any drama with a birdie on No. 17.
■ Luke Donald was almost perfect with his putter on the way to an 8-under 64 at Kingsbarns on Sunday that gave him a one-stroke lead over Rory McIlroy and Simon Dyson in the weather-delayed third round of the Dunhill Links Championship in St. Andrews, Scotland. Donald had nine birdies and just one bogey, at the 15th.
Lookin at Lucky, Blind Luck earn Breeders' Cup berths
Lookin at Lucky took the lead at the top of the stretch and held on to win the $300,000 Norfolk Stakes, earning an automatic berth in next month's Breeders' Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita. The 2-year-old colt improved to 4-0 Sunday for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert. His 2-year-old filly, Always a Princess, led most of the way before finishing second in the $300,000 Oak Leaf Stakes.
Blind Luck overtook Always a Princess in the final sixteenth to earn an automatic berth in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies on Nov. 6 at Santa Anita.
It was Baffert's fifth Norfolk win in the last 13 years. Midshipman finished second for Baffert in the race last year, then went on to win the $2 million BC Juvenile.
Baffert said he was looking for Always a Princess to hit the board to get into the Breeders' Cup.
"She got a little tired at the end, but she did all the running," he said. "This will set her up perfect for the Breeders' Cup."
Volleyball grinds out five-set victory
Fifteenth-ranked Kentucky (15-1, 5-0 SEC) needed five sets to overcome South Carolina — 25-20, 25-21, 23-25, 19-25, 15-13 — in Columbia, S.C. on Sunday. Sophomore Becky Pavan had a career-high 16 kills for the Cats.
"South Carolina played great today especially after being down by two sets," UK Coach Craig Skinner said. "I think we got a little too comfortable, but somehow we found away to find enough intensity and pull off the win in set five. South Carolina is a good team, and they will continue to have a great season."
Senior setter Sarah Rumely had 51 assists to move into sole possession of second place all-time on UK's career list. The senior also had five kills and 11 digs. Junior Sarah Mendoza also had a double-double with 21 kills and 12 digs.
■ The Kentucky women's soccer team (3-6-3, 0-4-0 SEC) lost 1-0 to Tennessee (6-5-1, 2-2-0) on Sunday. The Wildcats managed nine shots, five on goal, the most they've taken in a conference game this season in both categories. The Lady Vols scored in the 28th minute on a goal by Amy Harrison.
■ Kentucky junior Brian Belden finished tied for 14th to lead Kentucky, posting a 54-hole total of 212 at the Gary Koch Intercollegiate on Sunday in Tampa, Fla. Belden shot a 2-over-par 74 in the final round. No. 9 Florida State won the tournament after posting an 834, the best 54-hole score in tournament history. UK was 11th.
Meeks scores 7 in pre-season opener
Former University of Kentucky star Jodie Meeks scored seven points in just over 12 minutes in his pre-season debut with the Milwaukee Bucks on Sunday. Minnesota won the game 117-103. Meeks was 3-for-8 from the field and 1-4 from three-point range. He had two steals and one assist.
■ Al Harrington scored 23 points and Wilson Chandler had 21 to help the New York Knicks beat the New Jersey Nets 115-107 on Sunday in the pre-season opener for both teams. Former UK star Joe Crawford scored three points for the Knicks. The Nets' Courtney Lee (Western Kentucky) missed the game with a foot injury.
■ An MRI revealed that Golden State's Brandan Wright has damage to the capsule in his left shoulder that will require surgery.
The last word
NASCAR's Tony Stewart left with more than a trophy and the winner's check from the Sprint Cup race at Kansas Speedway. He took a chair with him, too. Told that Jeff Gordon had sat in the chair before him, Stewart went into mock deification mode:
"Oh my god, I'm sitting in the seat that Gordon sat in. That's awesome. Can I take this home? I'm going to take this home."
Apparently, he wasn't kidding: Stewart pushed the chair down the ramp, out the door and took it to his No. 14 hauler.