Thursday’s Sports In Brief – Charlotte Observer
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Jordan Spieth began his quest for the career Grand Slam by not making a putt longer than 5 feet. What helped was that Quail Hollow punished just about everyone at some point Thursday in the PGA Championship.
Kevin Kisner and Thorbjorn Olesen of Denmark emerged as the top survivors on a course with some of the fastest, scariest putting surfaces the PGA Championship has ever seen. And both had to watch lengthy birdie putts creep into the cup on the 18th hole to share the lead at 4-under 67.
For all the talk about this 7,600-yard course favoring the big hitters, the shortest club in the bag turned out to be just as valuable.
Spieth is among the best putters in golf, especially from long range. On consecutive holes, he ran long putts some 10 feet by the cup and made bogey. He saved his round with two late birdies for a 1-over 72 and still was just five shots behind.
The 24-year-old Texan would become the sixth, and youngest, player to complete the Grand Slam if he were to win the PGA Championship.
U.S. Open champion Brooks Koepka led five players at 68.
TRACK & FIELD
LONDON (AP) —Ramil Guliyev of Turkey earned the upset of the world championships when he matched Wayde Van Niekerk stride for stride and won the 200-meter title by lunging at the line just ahead of the favored South African.
Jereem Richards of Trinidad and Tobago took bronze, while Isaac Makwala faded down the stretch and finished sixth.
The 27-year-old Guliyev, a little-known sprinter who transferred nationality from Azerbaijan six years ago, was not even among the top-10 performers this year before he stunned his rivals and the 60,000-sellout crowd at the Olympic Stadium, which had come to see Van Niekerk and Makwala fight for gold.
Guliyev finished in 20.09 seconds, .02 seconds ahead of both Van Niekerk and Richards. The South African took silver by .001 seconds.
Guliyev held his hands over his mouth in sheer disbelief after the slow race — the slowest final since 2003.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Sacramento Kings forward Zach Randolph was arrested on a marijuana charge after several police cars were vandalized when a large gathering became unruly at a Los Angeles housing project, authorities said.
Randolph, 36, was taken into custody late Wednesday on suspicion of possessing marijuana with intent to sell, according to Los Angeles Police Department Officer Norma Eisenman.
“The charges are false and misleading,” Randolph’s agent and attorney Raymond Brothers told The Associated Press on Thursday. “We’re looking at all options to resolve this matter.”
Police on patrol observed a crowd drinking, smoking pot, blasting music and blocking streets at the Nickerson Gardens project in Watts, authorities said.
The officers observed three people, including Randolph, “reach for their waist bands” and then run away from the officers, Eisenman said in a statement.
NCAA member schools will be required to provide yearly sexual violence education for all college athletes, coaches and athletics administrators under a policy announced by the organization’s board of governors.
Campus leaders such as athletic directors, school presidents and Title IX coordinators will be required to attest that athletes, coaches and administrators have been educated on sexual violence.
The policy was adopted from a recommendation made by the Commission to Combat Campus Sexual Violence, which was created by the board last year in response to several high-profile cases involving sexual assaults and athletic departments, including the scandal at Baylor.
The policy also requires campus leaders to declare that athletic departments are knowledgeable and compliant with school policies on sexual violence prevention, adjudication and resolution.
Brenda Tracy, a rape survivor and activist who speaks to college teams across the country about sexual violence, is a member of the commission. She has called for the NCAA to ban athletes with a history of sexual violence. While this policy falls far short of that, Tracy said she was encouraged.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski will have a total knee replacement surgery, leading the team to cancel this month’s exhibition trip to the Dominican Republic.
The school announced that the Hall of Fame coach will have the procedure this weekend on his right leg at the university hospital in Durham. Krzyzewski will be released within three days to begin a rehabilitation program at Duke.
In a statement, the 70-year-old Krzyzewski said he decided on surgery after three straight days of working with the team made him realize his knee condition “wouldn’t be sustainable” through next season.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis Cardinals are looking for their rally cat.
The feisty feline became an internet sensation Wednesday night, sprinting onto the field at Busch Stadium with the bases loaded for the Cardinals with two outs in the sixth inning. The cat emerged from near the visitors’ dugout on the third-base side and raced into the outfield, the fur on its tail standing on end. Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain stood, smiling, with a hand on his hip as the cat sprinted past him.
Kansas City was leading 5-4 at the time and play was delayed for a couple minutes while the grounds crew collected the cat. On the first pitch after play resumed, Yadier Molina hit a grand slam off Peter Moylan to give the Cardinals an 8-5 lead. The cat was instantly dubbed #RallyCat on Twitter, and St. Louis went on to win — its fifth victory in a row.
The Cardinals said that a fan grabbed the cat after its grounds crew employee put the animal down to receive treatment for scratches and bites. The Cardinals said the fan claimed the cat was hers and abruptly left with the animal after answering some questions from security.
The Cardinals said the team hopes to find the cat to make sure it is properly cared for, and they are developing a stray animal protocol to ensure the safety of grounds crew members in the future.