Chappell edges Koepka by 1 stroke to win Texas Open

Apr 23, 2017 0

Kevin Chappell made an 8-foot putt on the final hole to win the Valero Texas Open by one stroke on Sunday.

Chappell had a 4-under 68 in the final round to finish at 12 under for the tournament, edging Brooks Koepka at TPC San Antonio to earn his first PGA Tour victory in his 180th career start.

Koepka, a member of the U.S. Ryder Cup team last year, was looking for his second PGA Tour win. He had the best round of the day at 7-under 65. Before Chappell came down the 18th hole, Koepka had birdied the hole with a 3-foot putt to tie him.

Second-round co-leader Tony Finau got in a position to tie Koepka when he birdied four of five holes on the back nine. But his par-bogey finish left him to settle for a final-round 69 and a third-place tie with Kevin Tway (69) at 9-under.

Australian Aaron Baddeley fired 68 to finish fourth at 8 under.

Senators beat Bruins 3-2 in OT, advance in playoffs

Apr 23, 2017 3

Clarke MacArthur scored a power-play goal with 6:30 gone in the first overtime and the Ottawa Senators beat the Boston Bruins 3-2 on Sunday to win their first-round playoff series in six games.

Craig Anderson stopped 28 shots for Ottawa, which advanced in the postseason for the first time since 2013. It was the fourth overtime game in the series.

Tuukka Rask made 26 saves for the Bruins, and Boston got goals from Drew Stafford and Patrice Bergeron.

Bobby Ryan and Kyle Turris also scored for Ottawa.

NFL Draft prospect Caleb Brantley charged with battery after allegedly punching a woman

Apr 23, 2017 5

Former University of Florida defensive lineman Caleb Brantley was charged with battery in Gainesville after allegedly getting into an altercation with a woman earlier this month, according to court records obtained by the Tampa Bay Times on Sunday.

According to the report, Brantley was charged with misdemeanor battery Friday after allegedly punching the woman during an early-morning incident on April 13. Brantley allegedly made crude comments about the woman, who pushed Brantley. That allegedly led Brantley to punch the woman, knocking her unconscious and knocking out one of her teeth, according to a witness in the police report.

Brantley, 6-2, 307 pounds, was expected to be taken early in Thursdays NFL Draft, but this news certainly will affect his draft stock.

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Brewers rally falls short in loss to Cardinals

Apr 23, 2017 5

MILWAUKEE — Mike Leake allowed two runs over six innings and drove in two runs to lead St. Louis to a 6-4 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday, the Cardinals’ sixth win in seven games.

Leake (3-1) gave up three hits and three walks while striking out six. He scored a run in the third inning and his two-run single capped a three-run fourth when St. Louis took a 4-2 lead.

The Cardinals took advantage of six walks by starter Jimmy Nelson (1-1) and an error by the Brewers for their first four runs.

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Nelson’s lack of command led to the three runs in the fourth. Stephen Piscotty and Randal Grichuk walked to open the inning. Kolton Wong’s one-out double off the glove of center fielder Keon Broxton on the warning track scored Piscotty. Eric Fryer drew a two-out walk and Leake followed with a single to left-center.

St. Louis made it 6-2 in the eighth on RBI singles by Fryer and pinch-hitter Matt Adams.

Manny Pina opened the ninth inning for Milwaukee with his first homer and Jonathan Villar added an RBI single.

Nelson, who had walked just three in his first three starts, allowed four runs and five hits in 5 1/3 innings. He is now 0-8 in 10 games, including nine starts, against St. Louis.

The Brewers took a 1-0 lead in the first when Eric Thames reached on a fielder’s choice and scored from first on Ryan Braun’s double down the left-field line.

The Cardinals answered with an unearned run in the third. Leake reached with two outs on a fielding error by third baseman Travis Shaw. Dexter Fowler walked and Aledmys Diaz followed with an RBI single to left.

Milwaukee countered in the bottom half on a walk to Villar, a single by Thames and Shaw’s sacrifice fly to make it 2-1.

St. Louis won despite several base-running mistakes. Piscotty was caught stealing in the second, Wong was picked off second base by catcher Pina, and Diaz was picked off first in the seventh.


Cardinals: CF Fowler and SS Diaz, each held out of the starting lineup on Saturday, returned Sunday. Fowler left Friday’s game with a sore heel, while Diaz had a sore back and shoulder. Diaz hit a pinch-hit tie-breaking solo homer on Saturday, although he did not play in the field.


Cardinals 1B Matt Carpenter and manager Mike Matheny were ejected in the seventh inning by home plate umpire John Tumpane after Carpenter was called out on strikes.


Cardinals: After a day off, the Cardinals return home to open a three-game set against Toronto on Tuesday. RHP Michael Wacha (2-1, 2.41) makes his fourth start. He allowed just one run on four hits in 6 2/3 innings his last time out.

Brewers: RHP Matt Garza is slated to be activated off the DL (right groin strain) and make his first start of the season to open the three-game series at home on Monday against the Reds. Garza is 4-5 with a 4.84 ERA in 14 career starts vs. Cincinnati, including 0-2 last season.

Dele Alli named PFA young player of the year for second year running

Apr 23, 2017 5

Surprising absolutely no one, Tottenham’s Dele Alli has been named PFA Young Player of the Year for the second year in a row.

Alli’s had an incredible year, scoring 16 goals and adding an assist for Spurs in Premier League play. He’s been one of Tottenham’s most important pieces, and a key part of the reason they’re locked in the middle of a legitimate title race with Chelsea.

Voted on by his peers, Alli was in contention for the award against Spurs team-mate Harry Kane, Everton striker Romelu Lukaku, Burnley defender Michael Keane, Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and Manchester City winger Leroy Sane.

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Said the 21-year-old shadow striker: “I’m extremely proud. It’s a great honor for me — obviously the second year in a row — but I’ve still got a lot to do, I’ve got to keep working hard. I’ve got to keep improving.

“The big thing for me, after last season, is I wanted to put my chances away more. I got a lot of chances last season that I wasn’t putting away. I wasn’t as clinical. I’ve still got to improve on that, still had a few chances that I’ve missed, so I’ll keep working on that. But there’s a lot of little bits that need improving.”

Alli’s Spurs were just beaten by Chelsea in the FA Cup semifinal, but they’re back in action on Wednesday against Crystal Palace, looking to close the gap on the Blues in the title race.


Twins' Gibson chased in third inning of loss to Tigers

Apr 23, 2017 5

MINNEAPOLIS — John Hicks had three hits, including his first career homer, and drove in five runs to lead Michael Fulmer and the Detroit Tigers to a 13-4 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Sunday.

One day after the benches cleared when Tigers starter Matthew Boyd threw behind slugger Miguel Sano in retaliation for teammate JaCoby Jones being hit in the face, there was no sign of lingering hard feelings.

Fulmer (2-1) allowed two runs on four hits in seven innings, striking out seven. Jim Adduci had three hits and two RBIs on the day he arrived from Triple-A Toledo and Alex Avila hit a two-run homer for the Tigers. Victor Martinez added three hits and two RBIs.

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Kyle Gibson (0-3) gave up seven runs — six earned — on eight hits in just 2 2/3 innings for the Twins, who went 2-7 on the home stand against AL Central opponents. Max Kepler and Eddie Rosario homered for the Twins, but Minnesota lost for the sixth time in seven games.

Hicks hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning, prompting Twins manager Paul Molitor to go to backup catcher Chris Gimenez as his seventh relief pitcher. Gimenez got Andrew Romine to fly out to end the inning.

Avila went deep in the second inning and Detroit broke the game open in the third with five more runs against Gibson, whose ERA rose to 9.00 after his shortest outing of the season.

Fulmer, the reigning AL Rookie of the Year, went three-up and three-down in four of the seven innings he pitched.


Tigers: Manager Brad Ausmus said he was optimistic that slugger Miguel Cabrera (groin) would be ready to come off the disabled list when he is eligible on May 1. . . . Ausmus also said OF J.D. Martinez ran outside for the first time since spraining his right foot in spring training and is on track to return some time in May.

Twins: LHP Buddy Boshers was recalled from Triple-A Rochester to take the place of RHP Justin Haley, who was put on the disabled list with biceps tendinitis. The Twins also recalled 1B Kennys Vargas and sent the struggling LHP Adalberto Mejia to Rochester.


The 31-year-old Adduci had not played in the big leagues since 2014 when he was with the Rangers, but was recalled to take Jones’ place in the outfield. His plane landed Sunday morning and he came off it swinging, with a two-run double in the third inning that nearly reached the seats in right-center field. He also had a single and a walk.


Left fielder Danny Santana threw out Ian Kinsler at home in the first inning, but was charged with an error after he couldn’t hold on to a liner from Justin Upton in the second inning. Avila followed with his home run for a 2-0 lead.

In the sixth inning, Michael Tonkin got Nicholas Castellanos swinging to end the inning, but Jason Castro let the ball get by him for a passed ball. He scrambled to throw Castellanos at first base, but the ball sailed past Joe Mauer into right field, allowing Hicks and Romine to score for a 10-2 lead.


Tigers: Detroit heads back home to start a series with Seattle. RHP Jordan Zimmermann (1-1, 5.94) starts the opener on Monday night Mariners ace Felix Hernandez (2-1, 3.65).

Twins: Minnesota starts a six-game road trip in Texas on Monday. RHP Phil Hughes (2-1, 5.40) starts the opener against Rangers LHP Martin Perez (1-2, 3.60).

Predators rested, ready to face Blues in surprising semi

Apr 23, 2017 8

The Nashville Predators finally get a new opponent in the postseason after their surprising sweep of the Western Conference’s No. 1 seed.

Their reward?

The St. Louis Blues, fresh off downing the West’s second-best team with a 4-1 series victory over the Minnesota Wild that was as stunning as Nashville’s sweep. St. Louis coach Mike Yeo said he is well aware of the Blues’ next challenge.

“It’s pretty easy for us to look at what happened in the last series and not underestimate that opponent,” Yeo said after St. Louis clinched its opening-round series over Minnesota. “So they’re a great team and that’s life in the Central Division for you, and the Western Conference for you. You get to advance from one good team and you get to go play another.”

Minnesota finished the regular season with the second-highest point total, 106, just three fewer than Chicago.

The Predators are hoping for one benefit to playing a second straight Central Division team after last season, when Nashville defeated Anaheim in the first round in seven games, a series that required three flights to California. They had just one off day between Game 7 and the first game of their semifinal series against San Jose, a series that the Sharks won in seven games.

“That was tough with all that travel last year, I remember it pretty clearly,” center Ryan Johansen said Sunday. “Getting off and on those flights all the time and bodies being sore and guys being beat up, it was difficult. We definitely have a different situation with Chicago and St. Louis being close and only having to play four games the first series.”

Nashville coach Peter Laviolette gave his team Friday and Saturday off, a precious commodity this time of year, after finishing its sweep of Chicago on Thursday night. The Predators returned to the ice Sunday morning for a high-tempo practice.

“The first priority was just a couple of days of rest and get back out here and just start getting at things,” Laviolette said.

Nashville won three of its five regular-season matchups against the Blues. The Blues won two of three games played in St. Louis, and they will have home-ice advantage in this semifinal after edging out Nashville for third in the Central. That left Nashville with the second wild card as the No. 8 seed.

This semifinal ensures one Central Division team will be playing for a spot in the Stanley Cup Finals, just not the teams expected in the first postseason series between these franchises.

“They are physical, they play fast, they play the right way,” Predators defenseman Ryan Ellis said of the Blues. “They are much like us. We try to do the right things at the right time.”

The Blues and Predators will feature this playoff season’s top two goaltenders. Entering Sunday’s action, Nashville’s Pekka Rinne leads the NHL with a .976 save percentage, with Jake Allen a close second at .956. Rinne allowed just three goals — two on the power play and one at even strength — in four games played against Chicago in the first round. Two of his wins, both in Chicago, were shutouts.

“You saw what they did to Chicago,” Allen said. “Obviously they’re playing their best games of the year, and they’ll be ready.”

Nashville forward Colin Wilson, who missed the entire first round because of a lower-body injury, was a full participant in Sunday’s practice. He’s hopeful to return against the Blues.

“That first playoff game, I was just dying to get out there, and sure enough, Game 3, our first game at home, it was an even bigger itch,” Wilson said. “It was nice to see the boys do real well and get me the opportunity to get back in.”


AP Sports Writer Dave Campbell in Minnesota contributed to this report.


More AP NHL:

Rays do all their damage in the first, fall to Astros in extras

Apr 23, 2017 8

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Brian McCann and Yuli Gurriel both had RBI singles in the 10th inning, and the Houston Astros rallied from an early four-run deficit to beat the Tampa Bay Rays 6-4 on Sunday.

Carlos Beltran opened the 10th by drawing a walk from Ryan Garton (0-1) and went to second on Jose Altuve’s single. After reaching third on Carlos Correa’s fly to center, Beltran scored to make it 5-4 on McCann’s hit to right.

Gurriel’s two-out single put Houston ahead 6-4.

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Luke Gregerson (1-1) went a scorless ninth before Ken Giles got three out for his fifth save.

The Astros tied it at 4 on pinch-hitter Evan Gattis’ sacrifice fly off closer Alex Colome, who was bidding for a two-inning save, in the ninth.

Brad Miller had an RBI triple, Steven Souza Jr. hit a two-run homer, and Jesus Sucre added a run-scoring single as the Rays went up 4-0 in the first.

After Correa had two-run shot during the third, Altuve got Houston within 4-3 on a solo homer in the fifth.

Joe Musgrove gave up four runs and five hits — all in the first — over six innings for the Astros. He allowed just two baserunners — on catcher’s interference and a walk — from two outs in the first through the sixth.

Three Houston relievers held the Rays to two hits.

Tampa Bay’s Matt Andriese allowed three runs and six hits in five innings.

Astros center field Jake Marisnick was replaced defensively to start the bottom of the third due to concussion-like symptoms. He had remained in the game after running face first into the center-field fence while catching Logan Morrison’s first-inning drive.


Astros: OF George Springer had his major-league leading streak of playing in 205 consecutive games end because of left hamstring discomfort. He was hurt running out a grounder Saturday and is day to day. “It’s a bummer for him, and I was proud of him because at the beginning of his career he had to answer so many questions about his injuries,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “And then last season he played in every game.”

Rays: CF Kevin Kiermaier, who left both Friday and Saturday’s games due to illness, entered as a defensive replacement in the eighth. … RHP Tommy Hunter (right calf strain) was placed on the 10-day disabled list and RHP Chih-Wei Hu was recalled from Triple-A Durham.


Astros: LHP Dallas Keuchel (3-0) takes the hill Tuesday night against Cleveland RHP Josh Tomlin (1-2). Keuchel has opened the season with four straight starts of seven innings, while allowing one or fewer runs in each outing. Only one other Astros pitcher, RHP Roger Clemens in 2005, has done it.

Rays: RHP Chris Archer (2-0) will face Baltimore RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (1-0) Monday night as Tampa Bay starts a three-city, eight-game road trip. The Rays are 1-6 on the road, compared to 9-4 at home.

Watch the stunning, jaw-dropping Messi and Rakitic goals that secured Barcelona's El Clasico win

Apr 23, 2017 8

Sundays El Clasico was one for the ages.

Barcelona topped Real Madrid in a wild back-and-forth 3-2 scoreline — but it was not just the sheer number of goals that made the contest great. It was the quality of the goals.

Gorgeous goals from Ivan Rakitic and Lionel Messi, including a last-gasp stoppage time game-winner, made Sundays iteration of El Clasico a, well, classic.

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In the 73rd minute, Rakitic fired a rocket that put Barcelona ahead for the first time all day, and he did in emphatic, jaw-dropping fashion:

@ivanrakitic cuts onto his left and launches a net-seeking missile past @NavasKeylor‘ reach! #ElClasico

— beIN SPORTS USA (@beINSPORTSUSA) April 23, 2017

After a James Rodriguez equalizer brought Real Madrid back within striking range of a win, it took another bit of magic to get Barcelona ahead again. And who else could it have been other than Messi in the dying moments of the match?


— beIN SPORTS Espaol (@ESbeINSPORTS) April 23, 2017

Perfect ball movement from the Blaugrana and a cool finish from Messi put the match away with not a moment to spare. A thrilling finish to a classic match.

You can bet this is a version of El Clasico no one will forget anytime soon and these highlights will warrant plenty of repeated viewings.



Bronson Arroyo goes 6 innings, leads Reds over Cubs 7-5

Apr 23, 2017 6

CINCINNATI (AP) — At 40, Bronson Arroyo gave the best performance during his long comeback, pitching three-hit ball over six innings Sunday as the Cincinnati Reds salvaged a 7-5 victory over the Chicago Cubs.

Arroyo (2-2) allowed Anthony Rizzo’s two-run homer — his third of the series — and struck out seven batters for the first time since May 13, 2014. The lanky right-hander has needed more than two years to recover from Tommy John surgery.

Raisesl Iglesias gave up a pair of runs in the ninth before finishing off the Reds’ 3-7 homestand.

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Patrick Kivlehan’s bases-loaded double highlighted a four-run sixth inning off John Lackey (1-3) and decided a matchup of up-in-years starters. The 38-year-old Lackey and Arroyo have combined for 793 starts in the majors.

Despite the loss, the defending World Series champions took two of three in the series and moved back into first place in the NL Central. No surprise that it happened in Cincinnati — the Cubs have won 17 of their last 22 at Great American Ball Park. They’ve taken 20 of their last 25 overall against the Reds.

Rizzo extended his hitting streak to 12 games — matching his career high — with his two-run homer in the fourth inning. His three-run shot with two outs in the ninth helped the Cubs rally for a 6-5, 11-inning victory in the series opener. He had another three-run homer during a 12-8 win on Saturday.

The Cubs have homered in their last 15 games at Great American. They hit seven in all during the series.

Arroyo worked fast, varied the angles of his deliveries, and kept `em guessing with his minimum-speed pitches. Jon Jay saw pitches of 67, 74, 83, 75 and 70 mph during one at-bat. The Cubs made contact with his first seven pitches of the game, fouling off four of them.


Cubs: Ben Zobrist started at second base and batted cleanup. He’d missed the last two games because of tightness in his back. Zobrist singled and doubled in four at-bats.

Reds: SS Zack Cozart was a late scratch from the lineup because of a sore left wrist. Kivlehan, who wasn’t in the original lineup, made his first start at shortstop and hit his first double in the majors.


Cubs: LH Brett Anderson (1-0) allowed six runs in only 3 2/3 innings in his last start, a 9-7 Cubs win against Milwaukee. He’ll face Chad Kuhl (1-1) as the Cubs open a series in Pittsburgh.

Reds: LH Amir Garrett (2-1) makes his first start in Milwaukee, facing Matt Garza (0-0). The rookie stuck out a career-high 12 Orioles in seven innings during a 2-0 loss to Baltimore on Wednesday.