Update on the latest in sports:
Kansas, Villanova advance to Final Four
UNDATED (AP) — It will be Kansas taking on Villanova in the Final Four of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament at San Antonio this Saturday.
Malik Newman almost singlehandedly pushed the Jayhawks into the Final Four. He scored all 13 Kansas points in overtime and finished with a career-high 32 to lead an 85-81 overtime win against Duke in the Midwest Region finale at Omaha. Newman drilled his fifth and final 3 from the corner to make it 81-78 with 1:49 left and followed with four straight free throws to close out the Jayhawks’ 31st win.
Trevon Duval scored 20 points for Duke, which finished 29-8. Freshman star and future lottery pick Marvin Bagley added 16 points and 10 rebounds in what could have been his final game for the Blue Devils.
Grayson Allen had 12 points for Duke but missed a 10-foot bank shot at the end of regulation.
The Wildcats have reached the semifinals for the second time in three seasons with a 71-59 win over Texas Tech in the East regional final in Boston. Villanova won despite shooting just 33 percent, including 4-for-24 from 3-point range after entering the game as one of the most prolific 3-point shooting teams in NCAA history. Fortunately for the Wildcats, they also held the Red Raiders to 33 percent from the field and finished with a lopsided 51-33 rebounding advantage.
Eric Paschall (PAS’-kuhl) finished with 12 points and 14 rebounds, Jalen Brunson chipped in 15 points and Donte DeVincenzo scored 12 with eight boards for Villanova.
Keenan Evans had a team-high 12 points for the Red Raiders but shot just 3-for-15. Jarrett Culver had 11 points for Texas Tech, which ends the season 27-10 following its first berth in the regional finals.
Curry now expected to miss conference quarterfinals
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Warriors are going to open the NBA playoffs without Stephen (STEH’-fehn) Curry.
Golden State coach Steve Kerr says the two-time MVP will not return for the first round of the playoffs next month because of a sprained left knee. An MRI exam Saturday showed a Grade 2 sprain of his MCL. The team said Curry would be re-evaluated in three weeks.
Curry had returned from a six-game absence after his latest right ankle injury Friday night, only to injure his left knee.
James scores 37, Cavs beat Nets
UNDATED (AP) — The Cleveland Cavaliers are heating up at the right time as they try to secure a division title and home-court advantage in the NBA’s Eastern Conference quarterfinals.
LeBron James came within two assists of another triple-double to lead a balanced and productive attack in a 121-114 downing of the Nets in Brooklyn. James shot 14-for-19 from the floor and finished with 37 points and 10 rebounds. He reached 2,000 points in a season for the 10th time, joining Karl Malone and Michael Jordan as the only players in NBA history to do that.
Kevin Love delivered 20 points and 15 rebounds to the Cavs’ fifth straight win. Jordan Clarkson chipped in 18 points, George Hill had 17 and Rodney Hood had 16 as the Cavaliers stayed 1 ½ games ahead of the second-place Pacers in the Central Division.
Cleveland is third in the East, 1 ½ games ahead of Indiana and Philadelphia.
The Pacers clinched a playoff berth for the seventh time in eight seasons by outlasting the Heat, 113-107 in overtime. Thaddeus Young had 22 points, nine rebounds and five steals, while Victor Oladipo (oh-lah-DEE’-poh) contributed 23 points and five assists to help Indiana stay a half-game ahead of the 76ers for fourth place in the East.
Miami coach Eric Spoelstra (SPOHL’-struh) missed the first game of his career, leaving Indianapolis on Saturday after learning his wife Nikki was entering labor.
Checking out Sunday’s other NBA action:
— James Harden had a triple-double and the Rockets improved to a league-leading 60-14 by earning their ninth consecutive win, a 118-99 rout of the Hawks. Harden finished with 18 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds in just three quarters, Gerald Green provided 25 points and Eric Gordon had 22 for Houston.
— Rudy Gobert’s 17 points and 15 rebounds were among the Utah highlights in a 110-91 trouncing of the Warriors. Utah outscored Golden State 36-18 in the third period to take a 24-point lead into the final period. The outcome puts the Jazz in a tie with Minnesota for seventh in the West, 1 ½ games ahead of Denver.
— Lou Williams torched his old team for 26 points and Tobias Harris had 20 as the Clippers rallied to beat the Raptors, 117-106 in Toronto. Montrezl (MAHN’-trehl) Harrell scored 19 points for Los Angeles, which trailed by 18 in the first quarter before improving to 13-7 in its last 20 road games. The Raptors fell to a league-best 30-7 at home and saw their lead in the Eastern Conference drop to 3 1/2 games over Boston.
— Terry Rozier scored a season-high 33 points and nearly matched the team record for 3-pointers in leading the Celtics past the Kings, 104-93. Rozier shot 12 of 16, including 8 of 12 on 3s, in the rookie’s most impressive game of the season.
— CJ McCollum furnished 34 points and the Trail Blazers ended a two-game skid by getting past the Thunder, 108-105. Damian Lillard scored 24 points and Jusuf Nurkic added 17 with 12 rebounds as Portland moved two games ahead of Oklahoma City for the third seed in the West.
— Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOOM’-poh) returned from an ankle injury to score 25 points in the Bucks’ 106-103 win over the Spurs, ending San Antonio’s six-game winning streak. Eric Bledsoe scored 11 of his 23 points in the third quarter for Milwaukee, which remains in a half-game ahead of Miami for seventh in the East.
— Trey Burke scored 19 points in his first start in exactly three years to lead eight Knicks in double figures in a 101-97 victory at Washington. Courtney Lee added eight of his 13 points in the fourth quarter to help New York send the Wizards to a third straight loss.
Penguins dump Flyers again
UNDATED (AP) — The Pittsburgh Penguins are back within three points of the NHL’s Metropolitan Division lead after completing a season sweep of the Flyers.
Bryan Rust redirected a pass from Sidney Crosby 2:25 into overtime to lift the Penguins past Philadelphia, 5-4. Crosby’s spectacular goal 17 seconds into the third period put Pittsburgh ahead 4-3, but the Flyers picked up a valuable point on Sean Couturier’s (koo-TOOR’-ee-ayz) goal with 43 seconds left in regulation.
Evgeni Malkin scored his 42nd goal and Justin Schultz had three assists for the Penguins, who are 16-1-1 in their last 18 home games.
The outcome puts the Flyers in a virtual third-place tie with Columbus in the Metropolitan Division.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:
— Brad Marchand tallied 28 seconds into overtime to push the Bruins past the Wild, 2-1, leaving Boston two points behind Tampa Bay for the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference leads. Marchand also set up David Pastrnak’s 30th goal of the season, but Minnesota picked up a point on Mikko Koivu’s (MEE’-koh KOY’-vooz) goal midway through the third period. The Wild are third in the Central, three points ahead of Colorado.
— The Jets erased deficits of 3-1 and 4-3 before topping the Predators, 5-4 on Mark Scheifele’s (SHY’-fleez) shootout goal. Rookie Kyle Connor scored his 29th goal and Blake Wheeler collected two points, including the tying tally one minute into the third period. The outcome leaves Winnipeg five points behind first-place Nashville in the Central Division.
— The Stars dropped their eighth in a row as Reid Boucher and Nic Dowd scored rare power-play goals to lead Vancouver’s 4-1 victory at Dallas. Mattias Janmark had a short-handed goal for the Stars, who trail the Blues by five points with six games remaining in the battle for the final Western Conference wild-card berth.
— The Ducks pulled out a 5-4 win over the Oilers on Hampus Lindholm’s goal 81 seconds into overtime. Anaheim trailed 4-3 until Adam Henrique (hehn-REEK’) notched his second goal of the game with 1:29 remaining in regulation, helping the Ducks move two points ahead of Los Angeles for third in the Pacific Division.
Hellickson, Napoli, Revere among the latest big league cuts
UNDATED (AP) — Washington pitcher Jeremy Hellickson, Cleveland slugger Mike Napoli (NAP’-oh-lee) and Cincinnati outfielder Ben Revere were among the latest cuts as big league teams reached a deadline to make roster decisions.
Kansas City pitcher Ricky Nolasco, Minnesota infielder Erick Aybar (EYE’-bahr) and St. Louis reliever Jason Motte (maht) also were released.
Former MLB infielder Munenori Kawasaki set to retire
TOYKO (AP) — Former major league infielder Munenori Kawasaki has been released by his Japanese team and says he is likely to retire.
The 36-year-old Kawasaki says a series of injuries have prevented him from being the player he wanted to be for the Softbank Hawks.
Kawasaki spent five seasons in Major League Baseball with the Seattle Mariners, Toronto Blue Jays and Chicago Cubs.
His post-game interviews in broken English became an internet sensation in North America.
Other MLB news
— Indians outfielder Michael Brantley will start the season on the disabled list as he slowly recovers from ankle surgery. The two-time All-Star began playing in spring training games only a few days ago, and the team doesn’t want to rush him back.
— Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright will start the season on the disabled list because of a strained left hamstring. With the longtime ace out, rookie Jack Flaherty will begin the year in the rotation as the fifth starter.
— Left-hander Wade LeBlanc has rejoined the Mariners, two days after he asked for his release from the Yankees. The 33-year-old LeBlanc made 50 relief appearances for Pittsburgh last season, going 5-2 with one save and a 4.50 ERA.
— The Phillies and prized prospect Scott Kingery have reached a six-year contract, a major endorsement for a player who has yet to reach the big leagues. The 23-year-old Kingery is batting .392 in 20 spring training games and is tied for the Grapefruit League lead with 20 hits. Kingery has played second base in the minors.
— Rangers minor league coach Howard Johnson has been released from a hospital with several fractures in his cheekbone after being hit by a line drive while in the dugout on Saturday. The Rangers said Sunday that Johnson’s eye function was good and that it didn’t appear he would need surgery.
Jets sign Terrelle Pryor
UNDATED (AP) — The New York Jets have added receiving depth by signing former Washington Redskins wide receiver Terrelle Pryor.
Pryor spent one disappointing season in Washington while hobbled by an ankle injury after signing a one-year, $6 million deal.
Meanwhile, Jets acting owner Christopher Johnson says the team has rescinded its offer to free-agent defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (ehn-DAH’-meh-kahng soo), who was cut by the Dolphins.
In other NFL news:
— The Browns have agreed to a two-year contact with free-agent quarterback Drew Stanton, who will likely be the primary backup to Tyrod Taylor. Stanton has spent the past four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals. He went 3-1 in four starts last season.
— Giants owner John Mara said the team does not have Odell Beckham Jr., on the trading block, then stopped short of saying the controversial star receiver is an untouchable. Speaking at the NFL meetings, Mara said he is not angry with Beckham, who recently was seen in a video in bed with a woman and what appeared to be white powder. Though the timing of the video and its content is uncertain. He is disappointed with his player.
PGA -MATCH PLAY
Watson wins Match Play
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Bubba Watson did Dustin Johnson a favor before capturing the Dell Technologies Match Play in Austin, Texas.
Watson won his second World Golf Championships title with the biggest blowout since the Match Play format switched to 18 holes in 2011, a 7-and-6 victory over Kevin Kisner. The final victory came after Watson beat Justin Thomas, 3-and-2 in the semifinals, allowing Johnson to remain No. 1 in the world ranking.
Thomas would have climbed to No. 1 by beating Watson.
PGA TOUR CHAMPIONS-RASPICAN SYSTEMS CLASSIC
Stricker wins second straight Tour Champions start
BILOXI, Miss. (AP) — Steve Stricker nailed down his second straight PGA Tour Champions victory by taking the Raspican Systems Classic in Biloxi.
The 51-year-old Stricker birdied all four par-5 holes in a 4-under 68 that left him 11 under for the tournament, three strokes ahead of Bill Andrade (AN’-drayd). Stricker won the Cologuard Classic three weeks ago in Tucson, Arizona, for his first victory on the 50-and-over tour.
Snowed out in Martinsville
MARTINSVILLE, Va. (AP) — Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway had to be postponed a day because of inclement weather.
Rain and light snow started falling Saturday afternoon and continued into the night, creating dangerous driving conditions both near and on the track.
There was no qualifying session for the Cup Series because of a wintry mix that moved through the area and halted the Truck Series race after just 23 laps Saturday.