Other Sports

Sports briefs: March 22

Marathon

Louisville's Korir repeats in Los Angeles Marathon

The Los Angeles Marathon's new "Stadium to the Sea" course was designed to be a visual tour of the city, beginning at Dodger Stadium and passing landmarks such as Graumann's Chinese Theater and Beverly Hills' upscale shopping district, Rodeo Drive, on the way to a finish near the ocean.

No one enjoyed those sights, or the race, more than Louisville resident Wesley Korir.

Korir successfully defended his Los Angeles title Sunday, while Edna Kiplagat won the women's event and a gender challenge bonus of $100,000.

"One thing my coach told me is, 'Wesley, enjoy yourself,' " said the 27-year-old, whose 2009 win in Los Angeles was his first marathon victory. "I tried to do that. To get my head out of running, I was looking everywhere. I saw everything."

Korir, a native of Kenya living in Louisville, won a tactical battle by breaking away from fellow Kenyans Richard Limo and Paul Samoei in the 25th mile to cover the 26.2 miles in 2 hours, 9 minutes, 19 seconds, the third-best time in the event's 25-year history.

Baseball

Mauer, Twins agree to mega-deal

Joe Mauer is staying home. The AL MVP agreed to an eight-year, $184 million contract extension with Minnesota on Sunday that includes a full no-trade clause, a massive deal that shows the Twins are no longer spending like a small-market club. The deal covers the 2011-2018 seasons and is the fourth largest — both in total value and average salary — in major-league history. Starting next season, the All-Star catcher will make $23 million a year. The 26-year-old Mauer, who has won three AL batting titles and is considered one of the best defensive catchers in the game, was entering the final year of his current contract.

The only players to have a higher average salary than Mauer's $23 million are Roger Clemens ($28,000,022 prorated deal in 2007 — he actually received $17,442,637 — with the Yankees) and Alex Rodriguez, who had average salaries of $25.2 million under the 2001-10 contract originally signed with Texas that he cut short and $27.5 million in a deal with the Yankees that runs through 2017.

■ Twins closer Joe Nathan will miss the 2010 season because of a right elbow injury that will require surgery.

Kearns hits two homers in spring game

Austin Kearns hit his first two home runs of the spring and drove in five runs as the Indians rolled to a 12-5 spring-training victory over the Dodgers on Sunday. Kearns, the Lexington native who has a chance at the Indians' starting left field job, went deep against Dodgers starter Eric Stults and again against reliever Aaron Miller. In 25 at-bats before Sunday, he had just two extra-base hits and had not driven in a run.

■ Reliever Kerry Wood is expected to miss a minimum of six weeks with a strained muscle below his right shoulder, an injury both he and the Indians initially dismissed as typical soreness.

Cubs 1, Reds 1, 10 innings: Laynce Nix hit a solo homer, and the split-squad Reds and Cubs decided to call it a tie after 10 innings. Justin Lehr gave up four hits in five innings. The 32-year-old Lehr has kept himself in the running for the Reds' fifth starter's spot, part of a crowded competition that includes 22-year-old Cuban left-hander Aroldis Chapman.

Reds 4, Athletics 3: Chris Dickerson drove in the go-ahead run with a sixth-inning single and the split-squad Reds held on for a win. Jonny Gomes hit his fourth homer of the spring to lead off the fourth inning.

Golf

Woods apologizes in two TV interviews

Tiger Woods acknowledged "living a lie," saying he alone was responsible for the sex scandal that caused his downfall and that no one in his inner circle was aware of his misdeeds.

"It was all me. I'm the one who did it. I'm the one who acted the way I acted. No one knew what was going on when it was going on," Woods told the Golf Channel in one of two interviews Sunday night. A second one was aired on ESPN.

Answering questions on camera for the first time since his early morning car crash last November, Woods again provided few details about the crash, his marriage, his stint in a rehabilitation clinic or much of his private life. Woods also acknowledged more fully than in any of his previous statements that the public ridicule had caused him shame.

"It was hurtful, but then again, you know what? I did it," he told the Golf Channel. "And I'm the one who did those things. And looking back on it now, with a more clear head, I get it. I can understand why people would say those things. Because you know what? It was disgusting behavior. It's hard to believe that was me, looking back on it now."

Furyk ends longest drought of career

Jim Furyk finally won after 32 months and 58 tournaments, and it became a footnote Sunday. When he finally reached the 18th green at Innisbrook, two television networks broadcast the first interview with the Tiger Woods since revelations he had been cheating on his wife. Furyk wasn't aware of this until after he won the Transitions Championship. One of Woods' closest friends on the PGA Tour, he walked into the interview room holding a three-page transcript of Woods' interviews with ESPN and the Golf Channel.

"You know what? Tomorrow, the paper is going to read that I won the golf tournament, and I don't really care if it's a three-page spread or a little blurb in the corner of the paper because the article is about him.

All he cared about was winning for the first time since the 2007 Canadian Open, his longest stretch without a victory since he first joined the PGA Tour.

NBA

Cavaliers finish off sweep of Pistons

J.J. Hickson and Anthony Parker combined for 20 points in the decisive third quarter and Cleveland beat Detroit 104-79 on Sunday to give the Cavaliers their first season sweep of the Pistons in 30 years. Cleveland held a double-digit lead most of the game, although the Pistons cut it to 55-47 on a basket by Jonas Jerebko with 10 minutes left in the third quarter. Hickson and Parker took charge, combining to score 16 of Cleveland's next 19 points while Detroit went more than five minutes without a field goal.

Lakers: Andrew Bynum's left Achilles' tendon is not torn, and the team is cautiously optimistic its starting center can return from his latest injury in two weeks.

Kings: Rookie scoring leader Tyreke Evans did not make the trip to Los Angeles for the Kings' game against the Clippers because of a slight concussion and facial injuries he sustained in a double-overtime loss to the Bucks.

Tennis

Roddick falls in Indian Wells finals

Ivan Ljubicic outlasted Andy Roddick 7-6 (3), 7-6 (5) in a battle of big servers to win the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells, Calif., earning his first ATP Masters 1000 title after three runner-up finishes. Ljubicic set up his fourth match point with the last of his 20 aces, then won with a serve that Roddick couldn't return. At 31, Ljubicic is the second-oldest winner at Indian Wells behind Jimmy Connors, who was five months older as the 1984 champion.

Jelena Jankovic defeated Caroline Wozniacki 6-2, 6-4 on Sunday to win the BNP Paribas Open, the Serbian's first title in seven months.

The last word

NBA rookie Jordan Hill, who was drafted by the Knicks last year but traded to the Rockets in February, said Knicks Coach Mike D'Antoni didn't give him a chance to succeed in New York. D'Antoni explained his reasoning Sunday:

"I don't like to play bad rookies, I like to play good rookies."

  Comments