Update on the latest sports
Suns keep rolling, top 76ers 120-111 for 5th straight win
PHOENIX (AP) — Devin Booker scored 36 points, Chris Paul added 18 points and 10 assists and the rising Phoenix Suns beat the Philadelphia 76ers 120-111 for their fifth straight victory. The Suns have won eight of their past nine games and improved to 16-9 on the season.
They got a big game from their bench against Philadelphia, especially from Dario Saric, who scored 15 points in his first game back after missing 10 straight. Joel Embiid (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEED’) had 35 points on 12-of-23 shooting for the Sixers.
T25 MEN’S BASKETBALL-SCHEDULE
Liddell’s 19 points power No. 4 Ohio St over Indiana 78-59
UNDATED (AP) — E.J. Liddell scored 19 points and Justin Sueing had 16 as No. 4 Ohio State pulled away to rout Indiana 78-59 for its sixth consecutive victory.
The Buckeyes have won nine of their last 10. They shot 48% against Indiana and had 21 points on the Hoosiers’ 15 turnovers.
Trace Jackson-Davis scored 23 points and Jerome Hunter added 10 to pace Indiana, which saw a two-game winning streak snapped.
In other top 25 games:
— Herbert Jones scored 17 of his career-high 21 points in the first half and No. 11 Alabama had a blistering shooting day in a 115-82 rout over Georgia. Alabama came into the day with a 3-1/2-game lead in the league standings with four now remaining in the regular season. The Tide hit 18 of 30 3-pointers to fuel the easy win. Georgia freshman K.D. Johnson capped a big week with 24 points.
— Austin Reaves scored four points in the final minute of the second overtime and No. 12 Oklahoma held off No. 14 West Virginia 91-90. Reaves led the Sooners with 28 points and Umoja Gibson added 21. Derek Culver had his 10th double-double of the season with a career-high 29 points and 14 rebounds for West Virginia.
— Andrew Jones scored 19 points to lead Texas to a 70-55 win over TCU as the Longhorns ended a two-game skid at home. Matt Coleman added 15 points and Jericho Sims had 11 points and eight rebounds for Texas. R.J. Nembhard scored 15 points to lead TCU.
— Joe Wieskamp scored 21 points to lead Iowa’s balanced offense in an 88-58 win over Michigan State on Saturday. Luka Garza had a season-low eight points on 3 of 11 shooting, while, Jack Nunge matched a career high with 18 points and Connor McCaffery had 16 points. The staggering Spartans are in danger of missing the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1997.
— Cam Thomas scored 25 points, JaVonte Smart added 20 and LSU beat No. 16 Tennessee 78-65. The Volunteers trailed for most of the game but were within 50-46 nearly midway through the second half. Thomas missed 10 of 16 field goal attempts, but he was 11 of 11 at the foul line. Smart knocked down 8 of 13 field goal tries, and Darius Days had 14 points for LSU.
— RaiQuan Gray scored 24 points and pulled down 12 rebounds as No. 17 Florida State defeated Wake Forest 92-85 in overtime. Gray made all 10 free-throw attempts and scored in double figures for the sixth straight game and had his second double-double in a month for the Seminoles.
— No. 22 Loyola Chicago rolled to an 81-54 victory against conference rival Drake. Aher Uguak led the Ramblers with 20 points by shooting 8 for 10 from the field. Loyola took control of the game with an 18-2 run to start the second half. The Ramblers moved into first place in the Missouri Valley standings.
— Cade Cunningham scored 15 points to help No. 23 Oklahoma State defeat Kansas State 67-60. Rondel Walker scored 10 points in his first start of the season and Bryce Williams added 10 for the Cowboys. The Wildcats lost their 12th in a row. They haven’t won since Dec. 29.
COLLEGE BASKETBALL-NCAA-INITIAL SEEDS
Gonzaga, Baylor top NCAA committee’s initial rankings
UNDATED (AP) — Gonzaga, Baylor, Michigan and Ohio State are the top seeds in the initial rankings in a field of 68 for the NCAA Tournament.
The Bulldogs were the top overall seed followed by the Bears in rankings released Saturday by the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee as a snapshot of the top 16 seeds with a month to go before Selection Sunday.
Gonzaga and Baylor have been 1-2 in The Associated Press men’s college basketball poll all season. Illinois, Villanova, Alabama and Houston were the No. 2 seeds in the four brackets.
Elsewhere in college basketball:
— The University of Maine men’s basketball team has opted out of the remainder of the season. The team had not been cleared for practice or competition since Jan. 17. The Black Bears played nine games this season, going 2-7, 2-6 in America East.
Golden Knights’ 3 PP goals spoil Sharks home debut, 3-1
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Jonathan Marchessault scored the first of Vegas’ three power-play goals and the Golden Knights spoiled San Jose’s first home game in nearly a year with a 3-1 victory over the Sharks.
Mark Stone and Chandler Stephenson also scored as Vegas took advantage of its first three opportunities with the man advantage to win for the fourth time in five games. Marc-Andre Fleury (marhk-ahn-dray FLOOR’-ee) made 24 saves.
Tomas Hertl scored the lone goal for San Jose in the Sharks’ first game back from a season-opening 12-game road trip. Martin Jones made 23 saves.
In other ice action:
— Brady Tkachuk (kah-CHUHK’) tipped in Mike Reilly’s shot from the point with 8.2 seconds remaining to give the Ottawa Senators a 2-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets. Ottawa improved to 3-12-1, winning for the first time in five games this season against Winnipeg. Evgenii Dadonov also scored for Ottawa, and Marcus Hogberg made 30 saves. Mark Scheifele (SHYF’-lee) scored for Winnipeg, and Connor Hellebuyck (HEHL’-eh-buhk) stopped 27 shots.
Coyotes’ Larsson suspended 2 games for illegal check to head
NEW YORK (AP) _Arizona Coyotes forward Johan Larsson was suspended for two games without pay by the NHL for illegally checking St. Louis Blues forward Zach Sanford in the head. Larsson received a minor penalty for hitting Sanford during St. Louis’ 4-1 victory on Friday night.
Sanford skated the puck over the blue line into Arizona’s zone when Larsson stepped up to hit him. Larsson turned his body as Sanford attempted to deke around the check, and the back of his left shoulder appeared to make direct contact with Sanford’s face.
The league ruled that Larsson should have been able to avoid contact with Sanford’s head.
Elsewhere in the NHL:
— The Ottawa Senators acquired forward Ryan Dzingel (duh-ZIHN’-gul) from the Carolina Hurricanes for forwards Alex Galchenyuk (gal-CHEHN’-yuhk) and Cedric Paquette. Dzingel has 171 points in 343 career NHL games with Ottawa, Columbus and Carolina. Galchenyuk, 27, scored one goal in eight games for the Senators, while Paquette, also 27, had one goal in nine games.
— The Columbus Blue Jackets have activated defenseman Zach Werenski off injured reserve and is expected to return to the lineup for their game at Chicago. Columbus also placed goaltender Matiss Kivlenieks on IR, retroactive to Feb. 6. The 24-year-old Kivlenieks is day to day with a lower-body injury.
— Edmonton Oilers forward Jesse Puljujarvi (pool-YAHR’-vee) is eligible to resume all team activities after being placed on the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol list Thursday. The team said Saturday he has met all requirements and was to be on the ice for practice Sunday.
NASCAR-DAYTONA 500-FINAL PRACTICES
Rain washes out NASCAR’s final practices for Daytona 500
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Rain has washed out the final two practices before NASCAR’s season-opening Daytona 500. It’s a potential setback for the nine drivers switching cars before “The Great American Race.”
Former Cup Series champions Brad Keselowski and Martin Truex Jr. as well as front-row qualifier William Byron are among those forced into backup cars because of issues in the 150-mile qualifying races Thursday night. Erik Jones, Chase Briscoe, Kaz Grala, Anthony Alfredo, Cole Custer and Ross Chastain also switched cars and will have to start Sunday’s race from the back of the 40-car field.
Meanwhile, there’s not a Confederate flag to be found at the speedway. A large sign before an infield tunnel warns that the Stars and Bars are barred from the property, and compliance hasn’t been a problem.
Mets’ Lugo needs elbow surgery, will miss start of season
UNDATED (AP) — The Mets’ pitching staff has taken a hit before the start of spring training. The team says right-hander Seth Lugo needs elbow surgery.
A bone spur will be repaired in his pitching shoulder and he will miss the start of the season. Following surgery next week, Lugo will not throw for six weeks, then will be assessed and transition to a throwing program meaning he won’t be game ready until well into the season.
The Mets also say they have invited Tim Tebow to big league spring training. He’ll take one of 75 spots after Major League Baseball limited spring roster sizes as a coronavirus precaution. A lefty-hitting outfielder, the 33-year-old Tebow batted .163 with four homers and 19 RBIs two years ago with Syracuse.
In other MLB news:
— St. Louis pitcher Jack Flaherty and Atlanta pitcher Mike Soroka won their salary arbitration cases with higher raises than their teams offered while Tampa Bay reliever Ryan Yarbrough lost with a raise much lower that he was seeking. Players and teams have split six decisions. Austin Barnes, Ian Happ, Donovan Solano and Dansby Swanson remain scheduled for hearings next week.
— A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells The Associated Press that the Arizona Diamondbacks have agreed to a $1.75 million, one-year deal with veteran infielder Asdrúbal Cabrera pending a physical. The 35-year-old is a two-time All-Star who was with the Washington Nationals in 2020, batting .242 with eight homers and 31 RBIs in the pandemic-shortened season.
— Matt Harvey will try to revive his career with the Baltimore Orioles. The 31-year-old right-hander has agreed to a minor league contract potentially worth $1 million for a one-year contract if added to the 40-man roster. A 2013 All-Star with the Mets, his fastball averaged 94.5 mph with Kansas, down from 97 mph in 2013.
— A person familiar with the deals tells The Associated Press that pitchers Rich Hill and Collin McHugh have agreed to one-year contracts with the Tampa Bay Rays pending physicals. Hill is a 40-year-old left-hander who has pitched for nine others teams over portions of 16 major league seasons. McHugh is a 33-year-old right-hander who has been both a starter and reliever during parts of eight seasons with the New York Mets, Colorado Rockies and Houston Astros.
— Outfielder Jay Bruce has agreed to a minor league contract with the New York Yankees and will try to win a job at big league spring training. The 33-year-old has an opportunity as a left-handed bat in a primarily right-handed lineup. Bruce hit .198 with six homers and 14 RBIs for Philadelphia in 96 at-bats during the pandemic-shortened season.
Day 7 preview
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — MELBOURNE, Australia — Serena Williams resumes her quest for a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title when she plays Aryna Sabalenka in the fourth round. In other key women’s matches, it’s Garbiñe Muguruza vs. Naomi Osaka, and Iga Swiatek vs. Simona Halep.
Eight-time Australian champion Novak Djokovic, injured in his last match, is to play Milos Raonic at night.
Late eagle from the fairway stakes Spieth to lead at Pebble
PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (AP) — Good signs keep appearing for Jordan Spieth at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. He was two shots behind with three holes to play when he holed out from 160 yards for eagle and Daniel Berger went out-of-bounds on the final hole. The result was a 71 for Spieth and a two-shot lead going into the final round. Spieth is trying to end more than three years without a victory.
Berger took double bogey on the final hole for a 72. Patrick Cantlay birdied his last hole for a 70. They were among those two shots behind.