Other Sports

Sports briefs: Sept. 21

Auto racing

Newman sets record, takes pole for Sunday

Ryan Newman set the New Hampshire Motor Speedway qualifying record with a lap of 136.497 mph to win the pole and headline a top 12 loaded with Chase drivers for Sunday's race.

Chase for the Sprint Cup championship drivers filled 10 of the top 12 spots Friday. Kasey Kahne was second and joins Newman on the front row, Jeff Gordon was third and Kurt Busch fourth for what will be the second Chase race.

Joey Logano qualified sixth, Kevin Harvick was eighth, series points leader and last week's winner Matt Kenseth was ninth, and Greg Biffle starts 10th. Jimmie Johnson is 11th and Kyle Busch 12th.

Martin Truex Jr. starts fifth the same week he found out NAPA was dumping sponsorship of his Michael Waltrip Racing No. 56 car after the race-fixing attempts at Richmond earlier this month.

"This is definitely not the time of year you want to find out that you really don't have a ride next year," Truex said. "It's going to be tough, but we'll have to deal with it and figure it out."

He his little time to piece together a deal and few options, but if he can find a funded ride out there, owner Michael Waltrip is willing to let Truex walk.

"If he came to me tomorrow and said, 'I got a deal to go do something,' then obviously I would not hold him back," Waltrip said.

Sam Hornish Jr. and Austin Dillon like where they are in more ways than one. The top two drivers in NASCAR's Nationwide Series are separated by only 17 points entering Saturday night's 300-mile race at Kentucky Speedway, where both have succeeded in recent visits. Dillon has the edge here of the two, sweeping last year and finishing sixth in June. Hornish finished just three spots behind the 23-year-old to post his third top-10 in as many starts on the 1.5-mile oval.


UK sports

UK women's soccer tops Auburn

The No. 19 Kentucky women's soccer team won its first SEC road opener since 2004 with a 1-0 victory over Auburn Friday. Junior midfielder Stuart Pope scored the winner in the 27th minute. It was her eighth goal on the season. Junior forward Arin Gilliland was credited with the assist. Kentucky (7-1-1) next plays Arkansas at 7:30 p.m.Sept. 27 at the UK Soccer Complex.

 Despite sophomore Isak Krogstad's team-high third goal of the year, Dartmouth used a pair of second-half goals to post a 3-1 win over the Kentucky men's soccer team in the opener of South Carolina's Gamecock Classic on Friday.

The Wildcats suffered the defeat despite owning a 17-8 advantage in shots and a 9-1 mark in corner kicks. UK will return to action on Sunday, facing annual power South Florida at 11 a.m.

 The Kentucky women's golf team sat in 14th place at 12-over par, 300 on Friday after the first round of the Mason Rudolph Championship at Vanderbilt. The Wildcats were led by senior Liz Breed's two-under par, 70, on Friday to put her in a tie for fourth.


High School Basketball

New event pits Kentucky teams vs. Ind.

A new basketball competition is scheduled to be launched this coming season. A Kentucky vs. Indiana Hall of Fame Challenge Cup is planned.

The format for the high school competition is four boys' games and one girls' game to be played in Freedom Hall. The games will be played Jan. 11 and proceeds will benefit the Basketball Halls of Fame in each of the neighbor states and a wounded warriors charity.

Participating teams from Kentucky are Hopkinsville, Elizabethtown (boys and girls), Ballard and Covington Catholic.


Horse racing

Shanghai Bobby back in winning form

Shanghai Bobby, last season's 2-year-old champion, made a successful comeback from a pelvic fracture, winning the $98,000 Aljamin Stakes by a neck Friday at Belmont Park.

The 2012 Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner missed the Triple Crown because of the injury from the Florida Derby in late March. No surgery was required and trainer Todd Pletcher selected a modest spot for the colt's return.

The 3-5 favorite, Shanghai Bobby needed a determined effort in the deep stretch to beat Slan Abhaile in the stakes for 3-year-olds.

John Velazquez was aboard for the first time. Shanghai Bobby won for the sixth time in eight starts, timed for the 6½ furlongs on a fast track in 1:15.79.

Shanghai Bobby paid $3.20, $2.50 and $2.10. Slan Abhaile returned $3.70 and $2.60 while Dads Caps paid $3.10 to show.


Etc.

El Salvador bans 14 players for life

El Salvador's soccer federation has banned 14 national-team players for life for their role in alleged match-fixing, including games against the United States and Mexico.

Among those banned Friday from all soccer activities Friday were goalkeepers Miguel Montes and Dagoberto Portillo, Christian Castillo — a former DC United player — and William Osael Romero, who played for Chivas USA. The bans are connected with suspected match-fixing in four matches involving the national team, including a 2-1 loss in an exhibition against the U.S. in 2010 and the 5-0 loss to Mexico in the 2011 Gold Cup.

 Cornell University officials say its men's lacrosse team has been placed on temporary suspension for its fall season because of a hazing incident earlier this month. A Cornell spokesman told the Ithaca Journal that the hazing involved "coerced consumption" of alcohol by underage freshmen players.


NFL

Titans' Battle fined for Sunday hit

Jackie Battle of the Tennessee Titans has been fined $21,000 by the NFL, becoming the first running back to be docked by the league for lowering the crown of his helmet into an opponent.

The new rule prohibits running backs from delivering blows with the crown of their helmet once they are outside the tackle box.

Battle hit Houston's Danieal Manning during the Texans' 30-24 victory Sunday but was not penalized on the field. He was fined Thursday and is appealing.

 San Francisco 49ers All-Pro linebacker Aldon Smith was released from jail Friday after his pickup truck apparently struck a tree and he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence and marijuana possession, authorities said. Smith later took to the practice field with his teammates Friday afternoon at team headquarters in Santa Clara. He is scheduled to appear in court on Nov. 4.

 Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden's injured right thumb will not require surgery, and he could be back on the field sooner than expected. Weeden visited a hand specialist on Thursday and was told there no further damage and that he doesn't need an operation.

 Cleveland running back Willis McGahee will play Sunday when the Browns meet the Vikings. Coach Rob Chudzinski confirmed that McGahee, signed this week, will be on the field, though his role is still undefined.


The last word

Oklahoma football's Jaz Reynolds, a fifth-year senior wide receiver, overcame some ill-advised tweets and two lengthy suspensions to return to the team. It would have been easy to leave Oklahoma and seek a fresh start, but Reynolds said that wouldn't have been the right thing to do.

"I was taught growing up to never quit. I could have transferred but in my mind that would be quitting and running away from your problems. ... I just wanted someone to look at me and be able to see that I made it through my situation and they can, too."

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