Stanley Cup Finals
Bruins facing deep deficit as series heads to Boston
The Boston Bruins couldn't have enjoyed the scenery late Saturday night while their team bus crawled through the raucous street party that consumed downtown Vancouver after the Canucks moved halfway to their first NHL title.
With Game 3 looming Monday night in Boston's TD Garden after a quick cross-continent trip Sunday, the Bruins realize the jam they brought back from Canada isn't sweet. Only four teams have rallied from an 0-2 finals deficit in 46 tries.
"We'll be disappointed, and we're allowed to be," said 43-year-old Mark Recchi, who ended an 11-game goal drought with a power-play score in Game 2. "But we'll take a lot of positives out of these games. When we get off that plane, we'll forget all about it. We'll worry about Monday, and doing our job at home."
Boston has rallied from an 0-2 deficit to win a series just once in 27 tries — although it happened in the first round of this post-season against Montreal. The Bruins are still smarting from their late struggles in Game 2, in which they lost for just the third time in 41 games this season when they had a lead after two periods.
"The positive is we basically lost both games by one goal," Boston forward David Krejci said. "That hurts, but we know we're in the game and we know we can do it."
Stricker holds on to win Memorial
Steve Stricker, who had never finished in the top 10 in his 11 previous trips to Muirfield Village for the Memorial, built a big lead with more flawless golf on the front nine, then relied on his silky putting stroke for two clutch pars to hang on for a one-shot victory in Dublin, Ohio. He closed with a 4-under 68, lagging from 20 feet for a two-putt bogey on the 18th hole. By then, the hard work was over. Stricker twice saved par from bunkers on the 16th and 17th holes, making putts of 15 feet and 7 feet to go to the last hole with a two-shot lead.
"It wasn't pretty," Stricker said to tournament host Jack Nicklaus while walking off the 18th green.
■ Patrick Reed closed out Augusta State's second straight NCAA golf title Sunday in Stillwater, Okla., beating Georgia's Harris English 2 and 1 in the featured matchup between each team's top player. Reed needed only a double bogey to halve the 17th hole and win the championship after English hit his second shot into a lake left of the green. The Jaguars, who compete in Division II in all sports except golf, also got victories from Mitchell Krywulycz and Carter Newman to win the final match 3-2.
■ Bob Gilder rolled in a 30-foot birdie putt on No. 18, then watched Mark Brooks bogey the hole to escape with a one-stroke victory in the Principal Charity Classic in West Des Moines, Iowa.Brooks seemed assured of his first victory in seven starts on the Champions Tour when he led by three strokes with four to play. But he hit into the water on 17 and needed a nifty putt just to make bogey, then three-putted on 18 to hand the title to Gilder, who also won this tournament in 2002. The 60-year-old Gilder earned his 10th victory on the senior circuit but first since 2006.
■ Brittany Lincicome made a 4-foot birdie putt on the final hole to win the ShopRite LPGA Classic in Galloway Township, N.J., for her fourth LPGA Tour title and first in two years. Lincicome closed with a bogey-free 5-under 66 for a one-shot victory over third-ranked Jiyai Shin and No. 4 Cristie Kerr.
■ Alexander Noren captured his second European Tour title by winning the Wales Open, shooting a 1-under 70 for a two-stroke victory. The 127th-ranked Noren finished at 9-under 275 at Celtic Manor, where he'd led since the second round. The victory added to his win at the 2009 European Masters.
College Softball World Series
Florida, Arizona State to play for title
Kelsey Bruder and Brittany Schutte hit back-to-back home runs in the first inning, sending Florida to a 9-2 victory Sunday against Alabama and a spot in the Women's College World Series finals against top-seeded Arizona State. The Gators needed to beat the second-seeded Crimson Tide (53-11) twice to reach the championship round and immediately jumped on Kelsi Dunne to take control in both games in Oklahoma City. Florida (56-11) scored a World Series record 11 runs in the first inning of the first game.
The Sun Devils (58-6) got a five-hit shutout from freshman Dallas Escobedo (35-3) to beat Baylor 4-0 and advance to the championship.
Arizona State beat Florida 6-5 in their previous meeting at this World Series. The Gators are trying to become the first Southeastern Conference team to win it all.
Twins from Georgia commit to UK
Rising seniors Zach and Daron Blaylock, twin brothers from Walton High School in Marietta, Ga., committed to play for Kentucky, Rivals.com reported. Zack, a safety, is 5-foot-11 and 190 pounds. Daron is a 6-0, 210-pound linebacker. The Blaylocks had recently visited Mississippi and were also considering Louisville and South Carolina.
U.S. beats Mexico in World Cup tuneup
Lauren Cheney scored in stoppage time to give the U.S. women's team a 1-0 victory over Mexico on Sunday in Harrison, N.J., in a final tuneup before the women's World Cup. The Americans dominated the match through 90 minutes, but were unable to score until Cheney unleashed a 25-yard blast in the first minute of stoppage time. Abby Wambach had the assist on the goal in her 157th international game.
The warmup win was the third straight for the U.S., which plays its World Cup opener against North Korea in Germany on June 28.
The last word
Golfer Steve Wheatcroft ran away with the Melwood Prince George's County Open, finishing a staggering 29 under for a Nationwide Tour-record 12-stroke victory. The 33-year-old former Indiana University player eagled the final hole for a 7-under 64 after opening with rounds of 66, 60 and 65. Wheatcroft said afterward:
"I'm absolutely over-the-top ecstatic. I've been out here for five years and never won. I wanted to make that next step and I wanted to do it in a big way. I had the pedal to the floor all day. I didn't want anybody thinking they had a chance today."