Other Sports

Sports briefs: May 9

NHL Playoffs

Fleury's 32 saves help Penguins take 3-2 lead on Canadiens

Marc-Andre Fleury made 32 saves, Kris Letang scored on a power play after accidentally setting up Montreal's decisive goal in the previous game and the Pittsburgh Penguins moved to within a victory of eliminating the Canadiens by winning 2-1 at home on Saturday night. Sergei Gonchar also scored as the reigning Stanley Cup champions seized a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals, with Game 6 set for Montreal on Monday night.

Sidney Crosby remained without a goal in the series and Evgeni Malkin also didn't find the net — he did set up Letang's pivotal goal late in the first period — but the Penguins had enough offense without their stars to support Fleury's best game of the playoffs.


Americans reach Serbia Open finals

Sam Querrey and John Isner won semifinal matches Saturday at the Serbia Open, setting up the first all-American ATP clay-court finals in Europe since Jim Courier defeated Andre Agassi for the 1991 French Open championship. Querrey, seeded third, routed 18-year-old Serbian wild card Filip Krajinovic 6-1, 6-2. Isner, seeded second, beat fourth-seeded Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka 7-5, 7-5.

Querrey needed just 51 minutes to dispatch Krajinovic, who was playing his first ATP semifinals. Isner broke Wawrinka in the 12th game of each set to reach his fourth career finals and his first in Europe.

Roger Federer faltered in his tuneup for the French Open, losing to defending champion Albert Montanes of Spain 6-2, 7-6 (5) Saturday in the Estoril Open semifinals in Oeiras, Portugal. Montanes, seeded fourth, will play for the title Sunday against Frederico Gil, who became the first Portuguese player to reach the finals after he upset fifth-seeded Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain 6-2, 5-7, 6-3.

Jelena Jankovic lost the Italian Open finals to unseeded Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez on Saturday, falling 7-6 (5), 7-5 to the Spaniard's array of touch volleys and drop shots. The seventh-ranked Serb beat Venus and Serena Williams in her previous two matches, but struggled against Martinez Sanchez's clay-court shotmaking in this warmup for the French Open in two weeks.

Novak Djokovic withdrew from the Madrid Open because of illness and allergies. Djokovic, ranked No. 2, retired from the Serbia Open in the quarterfinals because of a fever.


UK softball reaches 30-win mark

Kentucky sophomores Chanda Bell and Rachel Riley combined to shut out Mississippi in the opener of a doubleheader at Oxford, Miss., on Saturday. The win was the Wildcats' 30th, giving them back-to-back 30-win seasons for the first time in school history.

Bell pitched the first 41⁄3 innings to get the win for Kentucky before Riley went the rest of the way for the first save of her career.

The Wildcats (31-23, 13-14 Southeastern Conference) followed up with a 4-2 victory in Saturday's second game. Riley pitched 52⁄3 innings for her 11th win of the season.

■ Transylvania's softball team defeated Manchester 6-2 in the Heartland Conference championship game to earn its first berth in the NCAA Division III Tournament since 2006. Kendra DeArk (21-4) added to her school-record win total with her third victory of the tournament. She went the distance and allowed two unearned runs on three hits. She struck out three and walked two.

■ Florida International's Garrett Wittels extended his hitting streak to 41 games, equaling the fifth-longest mark in NCAA Division I history. Wittels singled in the first inning at Arkansas State on Saturday. The Division I record is 58 by Oklahoma State's Robin Ventura in 1987.

■ Junior right-hander Thomas Royse matched a career high with 11 strikeouts in eight shutout innings in the Louisville baseball team's 5-0 series-opening win against Georgetown on Friday night at Bethesda, Md. Royse, a Paul Dunbar graduate, scattered six hits and improved to 9-1 this season.

Horse racing

Flex The Muscle takes Dexter Cup

Flex The Muscle overtook stablemate Shaq Is Back in the stretch for a 1½ -length victory in the $156,000 Dexter Cup for 3-year-old trotters at Freehold Raceway in New Jersey on Saturday.David Miller guided Flex The Muscle over the mile in 1:56.2 and gave trainer Ray Schnittker his fifth victory in the Dexter Cup, an early test leading up to the Hambletonian. Celebrity Bluechip was third and Senor Glide placed fourth.

Tax Ruling beat pace-setting Slip Away by 4¾ lengths Saturday in the $150,000 Calvin Houghland-Iroquois Steeplechase at Percy Warner in Nashville. The 7-year-old gelding edged seven rivals in the 3-mile contest over 18 hurdles in a track-record 5:371⁄5 with Darren Nagle in the saddle.


Stanford wins men's volleyball title

Brad Lawson carried host Stanford to the NCAA volleyball championship, finishing with 23 kills as the Cardinal beat Penn State in three sets Saturday. Spencer McLachlin added 12 kills and Evan Romero had 11 as the Cardinal (24-6) won their first title since 1997 with the 30-25, 30-20, 30-18 victory. National player of the year Kawika Shoji added 47 assists and 10 digs for Stanford.

■ Sweden's Fredrik Andersson Hed shot a 9-under 63 Saturday for a six-stroke lead after the third round of the PGA European Tour's Italian Open. Andersson Hed made 10 birdies to total 17-under 199. Preferred lies were used after days of heavy rain, so he couldn't claim a course record at the Royal Park Roveri.

Melissa Reid shot a second successive round of two-under 71 to take the lead at the Ladies European Tour's Turkish Airlines Ladies Open. The 22-year-old English star carded six birdies and four bogeys for a 4-under total. Mallory Blackwelder, a Nicholasville native and former University of Kentucky standout playing in her second event on the tour, entered play Saturday in third place at 2-under. But three double bogeys, three bogeys and a birdie left her 10 shots off the pace and at 6-over for the tournament.

The last word

What could be better than playing slow-pitch softball this summer — and getting paid $10 million to boot? Eric Byrnes, still collecting his guaranteed salary after getting released by the Mariners last week, is about to find out, having joined a beer-league team in Menlo Park, Calif. Byrnes told MLB.com:

"This is going to be a blast. Playing with my buddies. I can't wait for my first hit. I'm going to ask for the ball."