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Sports Shorts

July 9, 1996

REDMOND, Wash. (AP) _ Brian Falkenborg, the Baltimore Orioles’ top pick in last month’s amateur draft, signed a contract and is scheduled to report Thursday.

Falkenborg, a 6-foot-6 right-hander with a 91 mph fastball, was pitching for his Senior Babe Ruth team on Saturday. Later that day, he signed a contract that included a $375,000 signing bonus.

Falkenborg, a graduate of Redmond High, gave up an Oklahoma State baseball scholarship to sign with Baltimore.

Falkenborg had a 1.02 ERA and two no-hitters this spring for Redmond, leading the Mustangs to the Class AAA tournament.


OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) _ Kentucky not only beat Syracuse in the NCAA championship game, but also knocked the Orangemen out of the top spot in the Division I attendance race for the first time in 12 years.

Kentucky averaged 23,895 for 13 home games, while Syracuse was second at 22,728, the NCAA said Monday.

The Big Ten was the conference leader at 12,769, followed by the Atlantic Coast Conference (11,334) and Southeast Conference (11,332).

The NCAA said 23,542,652 fans attended Division I games, a drop of under 1 percent from last season. The record of 23,893,993 was set in 1991-92.

South Dakota State led Division II schools at 4,945 and Hope College topped Division III at 2,409.


PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) _ Tulane assistant coach Jenny Yopp was chosen Monday to replace the winningest women’s basketball coach in Portland State history and take the program from NCAA Division II to Division I.

Yopp, 29, will succeed Greg Bruce, who led the Vikings for the past decade before leaving for the Portland Power of the fledgling American Basketball League.

In Yopp’s five years at Tulane, the program improved from 9-19 her first season to 21-10 last season, when it earned the second of two consecutive NCAA Tournament berths. During her tenure, the program graduated all of its players.

At the University of North Carolina, Yopp was the only walk-on player ever to start and receive a full scholarship. She won four letters as a Tar Heels point guard and earned the scholarship her senior season.

After her 1989 graduation, Yopp was a graduate assistant at the University of Maine for two seasons, earning a master’s degree in exercise and sports science.


CONCORD, N.C. (AP) _ The company that owns Charlotte Motor Speedway has agreed to buy Bristol International Dragway in Tennessee.

Speedway Motorsports Inc., which also owns Bristol Motor Speedway, will buy the dragway from owner Rick Ruth, Bruton Smith, chairman of Speedway Motorsports said.

The quarter-mile dragstrip hosts the spring and fall nationals for the International Hot Rod Association. During NASCAR Winston Cup weekends at nearby Bristol Speedway, the dragway is used for parking.

Speedway Motorsports also owns the Atlanta Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway.


WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) _ Jack Morris lost his first Northern League game Monday night as the Winnipeg Goldeyes defeated the St. Paul Saints 4-3.

Morris (4-1), who is attempting to make it back to the major leagues, pitched a complete game, giving up seven hits and two walks with nine strikeouts. Brent Watts’ solo homer in the seventh broke a 3-3 tie.

The independent league Saints are 1-4 since last week’s return of Darryl Strawberry to the New York Yankees.


TORONTO (AP) _ Harold (Hal) Robson, the first Canadian-born race car driver to compete in the Indianapolis 500, died last Tuesday of complications arising from lymphoma. He was 85.

Robson was born in Toronto in 1911 and raced sprint cars in California as a Canadian until 1940, when he became a U.S. citizen.

He qualified for the Indy 500 three times, finishing 15th in 1948. In 1946, his rookie year, the Indy 500 was won by his older brother George Robson, who was born in England but spent his childhood in Toronto.

George Robson was killed while racing in Atlanta later that same year.

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