Other Sports

Sports briefs: Sept. 11

UK Sports

Calipari halves ticket pricefor UK NBA alumni game

John Calipari took to his blog Sunday to lament the slow ticket sales for UK's alumni showcase Saturday in Rupp Arena.

On Monday night, he took it a step further. In an email sent to UK's "all-campus" listserv, Calipari offered $20 lower-level tickets for the event that will feature several former UK players now playing in the NBA.

Those tickets had previously been priced at $40.

To get the deal, Calipari directed fans to the Rupp Arena box office, Ticketmaster.com, or to call 1-800-745-3000. Fans can use the code TWENTY to get the half-off deal.

In Sunday's blog post, Calipari seemed to refer to 2013 mega-recruit Julius Randle, who will be in attendance for the Alumni Game.

"Keep in mind that we may have some other special people visiting that weekend who will want to see what the Big Blue Nation is capable of," Cal said on the blog. "We want to continue to show them that you can only do things like this at this level at Kentucky."

Women's golf team tied for second

Senior Ashleigh Albrecht shot a 1-under 71, and the Kentucky women's golf team was 4 shots back after the first round of the fall season-opening Old Waverly Bulldog Invitational in West Point, Miss. UK and Arkansas are tied for second place in the 11-team, three-round tournament that concludes Wednesday. Tulane, led by Gemma Dryburgh's tournament-leading 69, is the first-round leader. Albrecht is tied for third, and UK teammate Heather Lott is one shot back at 72.


Shin outduels Creamer in LPGA playoff

Jiyai Shin needed only 20 minutes Monday to do what she couldn't in eight hours a day earlier.

The South Korean made a two-putt par on the ninth playoff hole, beating Paula Creamer to win the Kingsmill Championship and end the longest playoff between two players in LPGA Tour history.

Shin and Creamer played the 18th hole eight times Sunday in an attempt to break the tie before darkness forced a suspension. About 1,000 fans turned out in the next morning to see them go at it again. But after just one more hole, the par-4 6th, the matter was settled.

"We were so hungry for the win," said Shin, who, like Creamer, was seeking her first LPGA Tour victory since 2010.

The 24-year-old South Korean, who was ranked No. 1 for 16 weeks in 2010, earned $195,000 for the victory.

Creamer finished with a par 71 Sunday and Shin shot a 69. Both then parred the par-4 18th eight times, breaking the mark of seven extra holes set in Cristie Kerr's victory over Seol-An Jeon in the 2004 LPGA Takefuji Classic. Jo Ann Prentice won the longest playoff overall, taking the 1972 Corpus Christi Civitan Open on the 10th hole.

McIlroy undecided on 2016 allegiance

One day after he beat the strongest leaderboard of the year in the BMW Championship, Rory McIlroy found himself in the middle of a debate over which flag he might represent when golf returns to the Olympics in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro. The 23-year-old from Northern Ireland, already with two major championships and a No. 1 ranking by a widening margin, grew up "a proud product of Irish golf." Because his country is part of the United Kingdom, he also is eligible to play for Britain. Stirring the debate was an interview with The Daily Mail in which McIlroy said he feels a greater connection with the UK than with Ireland. "What makes it such an awful position to be in is I have grown up my whole life playing for Ireland under the Golfing Union of Ireland umbrella," he told the British newspaper. "But the fact is, I've always felt more British and Irish." That led to speculation that McIlroy was laying the groundwork toward playing for Britain, and he quickly clarified his position, which remains on the fence. "I wish to clarify that I have absolutely not made a decision regarding my participation in the next Olympics," McIlroy said.

College basketball

UConn star Napier has surgery on foot

Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier underwent surgery to repair a stress fracture in his right foot. The injury bothered Napier for several months and led him to withdraw from the Puerto Rican National team this summer. UConn said the junior captain had a screw inserted in his fifth metatarsal bone Friday at UConn's John Dempsey Hospital in Farmington. The school said the surgery was successful and Napier is expected to be healed before practice begins on Oct. 13. Napier is UConn's team leader and top returning scorer. He averaged 13 points and almost six assists last season.

■ Ex-Southern Miss guard LaShay Page has officially transferred to South Carolina. Gamecocks Coach Frank Martin said Monday that Page will be eligible to play this fall. Page is from Dillon, S.C., about two hours from campus. He is a 6-foot-1 guard who averaged 11.6 points a game last season and led the Golden Eagles with 75 three-pointers.

■ Sophomore forward Devonta Abron will be eligible to play right away at TCU after appearing in 32 games for Arkansas last season. New TCU coach Trent Johnson said Monday that the NCAA granted Abron a waiver that will make him eligible to play this season instead of having to sit out the usual one season under transfer rules. The 6-foot-8 Abron left Arkansas to be closer to his home in Seagoville, Texas, which is about an hour from the TCU campus. Abron started 22 games as a freshman for the Razorbacks, averaging 5.7 points and 4.2 rebounds.


Gee re-signs with Cavaliers

The Cleveland Cavaliers signed free agent swingman Alonzo Gee to a three-year, $9.75 million contract. Gee, 25, had a breakout season for the Cavs in 2012, averaging 10.6 points and 5.1 rebounds. Cavs General Manager Chris Grant said keeping the 6-foot-6 Gee was a priority in the offseason. Gee played in the NBA's Development League in 2010.


U.S. men face Jamaica in qualifier

This isn't a must-win match for the U.S. men's national team and its World Cup hopes. Not yet, anyway. If it doesn't beat Jamaica on Tuesday night in Columbus, Ohio, however, its road to making the next World Cup will be steep. On the heels of a 2-1 loss at Jamaica on Friday night, the Americans find themselves with little wiggle room. The top two teams in Group A move on to next year's six-nation regional finals, with three of those teams then qualifying for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. The U.S. also has another match on American soil against Guatemala, along with a road trip to Antigua. Jamaica (2-0-1) leads the grouping, followed by the U.S. and Guatemala, both 1-1-1. Veteran Jozy Altidore said at Sunday's practice if the Americans don't win, "It gets pretty scary." The match is a sellout at Crew Stadium, home of the MLS franchise in Columbus.

The last word

Minnesota's 26-23 win over Jacksonville on Sunday was the first time since the NFL's new overtime scoring rule was installed last season that the first team to score didn't immediately run off the field a winner. The Vikings got a 38-yard field goal from Blair Walsh and then stopped the Jaguars to wrap up the victory. Said Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder:

"We just wanted to give y'all a show. We could have ended the game a little sooner ... but everyone knew the rule and was well aware of what was going on."