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BC-AP Sports Digest

September 4, 2018

The supervisor is Fred Lief, followed by Ben Nuckols at 5 p.m. and Doug Feinberg at 1 a.m. The New York sports desk can be reached at 800-845-8450, ext. 1630. Sports photos, ext. 1918; graphics, ext. 7636; agate, ext. 1635. For up-to-the-minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at https://newsroom.ap.org For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477. All times EDT.

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TOP STORIES

TEN--US OPEN

NEW YORK — Defending champion Sloane Stephens is out of the U.S. Open, beaten by 19th-seeded Anastasija Sevastova 6-2, 6-3 in the quarterfinals on another sizzling day. Serena Williams faces the last player to beat her at the Open — Karolina Pliskova. By Tennis Writer Howard Fendrich. SENT: 150 words, photos. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 7 p.m. Updates from night session.

— With:

— TEN--US OPEN-THE LATEST — Real-time updates throughout day.

— TEN--US-DAVIS CUP ROSTER — John Isner off U.S. team for Davis Cup semifinal against Croatia. By Brian Mahoney. SENT: 350 words, photos.

— TEN--US OPEN GLANCE.

GYM--USA GYMNASTICS-PERRY QUITS

Kerry Perry resigns under pressure as USA Gymnastics president days after the U.S. Olympic Committee questioned her ability to lead the scandal-rocked organization. Athletes felt she mishandled the tumult surrounding imprisoned team doctor Larry Nassar. By Will Graves. SENT: 750 words, photos.

— With:

— GYM--DOCTOR-SEXUAL ASSAULT-FALLOUT — Changes prompted by Nassar scandal. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

FBC--T25-COLLEGE FOOTBALL POLL

No. 11 LSU and No. 12 Virginia Tech make the biggest jumps in the first AP college football poll of the regular season while No. 4 Ohio State leapfrogs No. 5 Wisconsin after a week in which most top teams went unchallenged. By College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo. SENT: 450 words, photos.

— With:

— FBC--T25-AP TOP 25 HEATCHECK — Taking the pulse of all Top 25 teams. By Ralph D. Russo. UPCOMING: 1,200 words, photos by 5 p.m.

KAEPERNICK-WHY DO IT?

Nike has waded into the national anthem debate with an ad featuring Colin Kaepernick. Some people are burning their shoes in protest, and Nikes stock is falling. But the company has generated plenty of buzz with its 30th anniversary “Just Do It” campaign. Could the move win over athletes and customers? By Business Writer Mae Anderson. UPCOMING: 550 words, photos by 4 p.m.

— With:

— FBN--KAEPERNICK-NIKE — Nike deal prompts flurry of debate online. By Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi. SENT: 700 words, photos.

BKC--PITINO BOOK

NEW YORK — Rick Pitino knows his coaching days are most likely behind him. Still, at 65 he wants to stay involved in the game, speaking to college teams and coaches. He talks with the AP about his ouster from Louisville last fall in his book, “Pitino: My Story.” By Basketball Writer Doug Feinberg. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 4 p.m.

SPORTS SHOWCASE

FBN--MR. SMITH’S WASHINGTON

Alex Smith is everything Kirk Cousins couldn’t be enough of for the Washington Redskins. He’s an established NFL quarterback who signed on long term and is already being called by teammates the kind of leader they needed. By Stephen Whyno. SENT: 950 words, photos.

SOC--UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE

GENEVA — Soccer’s newest international competition begins this week, with many fans puzzled over how it works. All 55 European national teams play in small groups. They are separated into four tiers using promotion and relegation. A champion will be crowned at a mini-tournament next June. By Graham Dunbar. SENT: 750 words, photos.

COMMENTARY

GLF--ON THE FRINGE-MAHAN

NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa. — Only when Hunter Mahan saw a leaderboard with three holes to play did he realize he would have a full PGA Tour card again. Only when he reflected the next morning on how much he and his family have endured was he overcome with emotion. By Golf Writer Doug Ferguson. SENT: 750 words, photos.

— With:

— GLF--GOLF NOTES — By Doug Ferguson. UPCOMING: 1,000 words, photos by 4 p.m.

— GLF--GOLF GLANCE — SENT: 900 words.

BASEBALL

BBA--YANKEES-ATHLETICS

OAKLAND, Calif. — Yankees lefty J.A. Happ (15-6) pitches at Oakland in what could be next month’s matchup for the AL wild-card game. Happ is 5-0 with a 3.38 ERA in six starts since being traded from Toronto to New York in late July. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. Game starts 10:05 p.m.

BBA--TWINS-ASTROS

HOUSTON — With Justin Verlander pitching and Alex Bregman pounding the ball, the Astros go for their fourth straight win against a Minnesota Twins team that has lost three in a row. Bregman has homered in three straight games and reached base safely in 31 consecutive games. By Kristie Rieken. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. Game starts 8:10 p.m.

BBO--RED SOX-BRAVES

ATLANTA — Rick Porcello (15-7) starts for the Red Sox, facing the Braves in a game between division leaders. Boston is up by 8 1/2 games in the AL East. Atlanta is front in the NL East by four games. By Charles Odum. UPCOMING: 700 words with photos. Game starts 7:35 p.m.

NFL

FBN--FALCONS-SARKISIAN

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. — It’s been eight months since the Falcons’ season ended on fourth-and-goal at the 2 in Philadelphia on a questionable play call. Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian knows how to change the narrative — build a big lead Thursday night against the Eagles. By George Henry. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 5 p.m.

FBN--STEELERS-TOMLIN

PITTSBURGH — Steelers coach Mike Tomlin doesn’t know when Le’Veon Bell is going to show up for work. Tomlin is fine if the All-Pro running back isn’t ready in time for the season opener in Cleveland thanks in large part to the development of player James Conner. By Will Graves. SENT: 650 words, photos.

FBN--PATRIOTS-GRONKOWSKI

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Rob Gronkowski wanted his contract redone, and the Patriots responded by adding incentives for the second straight year. It’s a show of appreciation for the All-Pro tight end, who is entering his ninth season. By Kyle Hightower. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 7 p.m.

FBN--COWBOYS-CUTTING BAILEY

FRISCO, Texas — Brett Maher’s strong showing persuaded the Cowboys to dump Dan Bailey, the second-most accurate kicker in NFL history. Bailey carries a hefty contract and has been struggling in camp. Maher begins Sunday against Carolina, with second-guessers ready to pounce. By Pro Football Writer Schuyler Dixon. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 8 p.m.

— Also:

— FBN--POWER RANKINGS — By Simmi Buttar. UPCOMING: 450 words, photos by 5 p.m.

— FBN--PANTHERS-INTERNATIONAL PLAYER — By Steve Reed. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— FBN--COLTS-FULL NELSON — By Michael Marot. SENT: 800 words, photos.

TELEVISION

FBN--ESPN-MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

BREKELEY, Calif. — Jason Witten followed teammate Tony Romo from playing field to broadcast booth. Witten is the lead analyst on ESPN’s new “Monday Night Football” crew, joining Joe Tessitore (play-by-play) and Booger McFarland (sideline). They debut with Raiders vs. Rams. By Pro Football Writer Josh Dubow. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

FBC--T25-STANFORD-ARCEGA-WHITESIDE

STANFORD, Calif. — JJ Arcega-Whiteside is content to let Stanford teammate Bryce Love get all the attention befitting a Hesiman Trophy contender. Arcega-Whiteside will gladly take the one-on-one matchups that result from defenses geared to stopping Love. By Josh Dubow. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 7 p.m.

FBC--T25-MISSISSIPPI ST-FITZGERALD

STARKVILLE, Miss. — Mississippi State quarterback Nick Fitzgerald discusses his suspension for last weekend’s season opener against Stephen F. Austin. Fitzgerald is expected to start Saturday against Kansas State. By David Brandt. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 9 p.m.

FBC--PAC 12-SHORTER GAMES

As attention spans shrink, the Pac-12 is expanding an initiative to quicken the time of games. Thirty games this season will have shorter halftimes and restructured commercial breaks. By Anne M. Peterson. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 6 p.m.

FBC--T25-OKLAHOMA-MORRIS

NORMAN, Okla. — After scoring on a long touchdown catch and blocking a punt in Oklahoma’s opening win against Florida Atlantic, walk-on Lee Morris is awarded a scholarship. Morris has taken advantage of his limited opportunities. By Cliff Brunt. SENT: 500 words, photos.

— Also:

— FBC--T25-MICHIGAN ST-HEYWARD STEPS UP — By Noah Trister. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 8 p.m.

— FBC--FLORIDA STATE FLOPS — By Mark Long. SENT: 500 words, photos.

— FBC--T25-AUBURN’S RUNNING GAME — By John Zenor. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 4 p.m.

— FBC--MARYLAND-ENCORE — By David Ginsburg. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 4 p.m.

GOLF

GLF--RYDER CUP

WEST CONSHOKOCKEN, Pa. — U.S. captain Jim Furyk announces three of his four selections for the Ryder Cup, with Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau considered the likely choices. By Golf Writer Doug Ferguson. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 6 p.m.

WNBA

BKL--MYSTICS-DREAM

ATLANTA — The Atlanta Dream return home to face Elena Delle Donne and the Mystics in the decisive Game 5 of the WNBA semifinals, with both teams looking to stay on track for their first championship. Washington forced the series to the limit after Delle Donne returned from a knee injury. By Paul Newberry. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Game starts 8 p.m.

BKL--MERCURY-STORM

SEATTLE — The Phoenix Mercury try to complete their comeback from an 0-2 deficit when they face the Seattle Storm in Game 5 of the WNBA semifinals. Phoenix star Diana Taurasi is 15-0 in elimination playoff games in her WNBA career. By Tim Booth. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Game starts 10 p.m.

SOCCER

SOC--US-WEAH

WHIPPANY, N.J. — Tim Weah, the 18-year-old son of former FIFA Player of the Year and current Liberia President George Weah, says he turned down a possible loan to stay at Paris Saint-Germain. He just scored his first goal in the French league. By Ronald Blum. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 4 p.m.

— Also:

— SOC--CHILE-US — U.S. women play a second exhibition against Chile in San Jose, Calif. By Janie McCauley. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos. Game starts 10 p.m.

NHL

HKN--HURRICANES-NEW LOOK DEFENSE

RALEIGH, N.C. — The Carolina Hurricanes have quite a crowd on defense. They brought in two defensemen this offseason — trading for Dougie Hamilton, then signing Calvin de Haan — essentially leaving them with seven solid-at-worst players for six spots. By Joedy McCreary. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 5 p.m.

OTHER

— CYC--SPANISH VUELTA — Elia Viviani wins 10th of Spanish Vuelta; Simon Yates keeps lead. SENT: 300 words, photos.

— CAR--INDYCAR-2019 SCHEDULE — IndyCar to debut in Austin, return to Laguna Seca in 2019. SENT: 350 words, photos.

___

Tuesday’s Time Schedule (EDT)

Baseball

Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, 7:05 p.m.

St. Louis at Washington, 7:05 p.m.

Tampa Bay at Toronto, 7:07 p.m.

Kansas City at Cleveland, 7:10 p.m.

Philadelphia at Miami, 7:10 p.m.

Boston at Atlanta, 7:35 p.m.

L.A. Angels at Texas, 8:05 p.m.

Detroit at Chicago White Sox, 8:10 p.m.

Minnesota at Houston, 8:10 p.m.

Chicago Cubs at Milwaukee, 8:10 p.m.

San Francisco at Colorado, 8:40 p.m.

San Diego at Arizona, 9:40 p.m.

N.Y. Yankees at Oakland, 10:05 p.m.

Baltimore at Seattle, 10:10 p.m.

N.Y. Mets at L.A. Dodgers, 10:10 p.m.

WNBA Playoffs (Semifinals)

Washington at Atlanta, 8 p.m.

Phoenix at Seattle, 10 p.m.

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