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Sports briefs

Compiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times
published September 22, 2002


U.S. pacesetter faces penalty

U.S. distance runner Seneca Lassiter could be punished by USA Track & Field for setting the pace for a Kenyan in the 1,500 meters at the World Cup in Madrid on Saturday.

Bernard Lagat, who trains with Lassiter, won in 3 minutes, 31.20 seconds. Lassiter, the defending U.S. outdoor champion at 1,500 meters, finished last in 4:05.82.

Pacesetters are common in grand prix events, but the World Cup is a team event.

In a statement, USA Track & Field called Lassiter's behavior "grossly inappropriate in any national team competition." He could receive a written reprimand, have his financial aid discontinued or face "other more severe penalties."

Lassiter issued a letter of apology, saying he had "no financial arrangement" with Lagat.

Gail Devers of the United States won the 100-meter hurdles in 12.65 seconds, beating Bridgette Foster of Jamaica by 0.17.

Colin Jackson, the 110-hurdles world-record holder competing in his final outdoor meet, clipped the first hurdle, knocked over the third, then barreled through the fourth. He completed the race in 22.16 and was disqualified for intentionally knocking over a hurdle. Olympic champion Anier Garcia of Cuba won in 13.10.

Africa became the first men's team to win four straight World Cup titles, piling up 134 points. The United States was second. Russia won its first women's title with 126 points. Defending champion United States was fourth with 105.

* * *

TENNIS: Serena Williams advanced to the final of the Toyota Princess Cup in Tokyo, 7-6, 6-3 over Amy Frazier. Williams faces Kim Clijsters, who defeated defending champion Jelena Dokic 5-7, 6-2, 6-3. ... Michael Chang of the United States, who won the 1989 French Open, is 120th in the rankings and might not play on the ATP Tour much longer: "Retirement is definitely in the cards." ... Marie-Gaianeh Mikaelian beat top-seeded Silvia Farina Elia 7-6 (3), 6-1 on to advance to the final of the Bell Challenge in Quebec. Mikaelian will face seventh-seeded Elena Bovina of Russia, a 6-1, 6-0 winner over compatriot Anastassia Rodionova.

* * *

ROWING: James Cracknell and Matthew Pinsent of Britain broke the world record and won the heavyweight coxless pair title for the second year in a row at the World Championships in Seville, Spain. They covered 2,000 meters in 6 minutes, 14.27 seconds, almost four seconds faster than the record set by Pinsent and Steve Redgrave at the 1994 worlds. In the women's lightweight single sculls, Lisa Schlenker of Lake Oswego, Ore., took silver behind Viktoriya Dimitrova of Bulgaria.

* * *

COLLEGES: FSU won its volleyball invitational, 3-0 over Brown. FSU's Kristin Frye and Alex Sevillano made the all-tournament team. ... In its first Sunshine State Conference women's soccer game, host Eckerd defeated Rollins 1-0. ... The USF volleyball team defeated host Wisconsin-Milwaukee 3-0. ... Host South Dakota State defeated Tampa in 3-1 in volleyball.

* * *

MOTORCYCLES: Valentino Rossi of Italy won the Rio Grand Prix in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to clinch his second straight world title with four races left. Kenny Roberts of the United States was third.

* * *

SOCCER: FIFA provisionally suspended Brazilian midfielder Luciano from all international matches after he admitted playing under a false identity. ... Abby Wambach scored two goals and added an assist to earn MVP honors and Mia Hamm had two assists as the South beat the North 6-1 in the inaugural WUSA All-Star Game in Portland, Ore. ... U.S. goalie Kasey Keller made seven saves but allowed a goal on Ruud Van Nistelrooy's penalty kick as Manchester United beat Tottenham 1-0 in the Premier League. ... U.S. midfielder Earnie Stewart scored his first goal of the Dutch League season as NAC Breda beat FC Twente Enschede 2-0. ... New England secured a MLS playoff spot with a 3-0 victory over New York/New Jersey.

* * *

BOXING: Floyd "Jumbo" Cummings, who fought former heavyweight champion Joe Frazier to a 10-round draw in 1981, was sentenced Friday to life in prison for armed robbery under Illinois' "three strikes" law. ... Germany's Graciano Rocchigiani won a $30-million judgment against the WBC when a Manhattan jury agreed that he was cheated out of his claim to the light heavyweight title.

* * *

CYCLING: Serguei Smetanine of Russia finished far ahead of the pack to win the 14th stage in the Tour of Spain in Gijon, and Oscar Sevilla held the overall lead with seven stages left.

* * *

HORSES: Docent held off Hay Getoutofmyway by 2 lengths to win the $200,000 Maryland Million Classic. ... Bonapaw held off a challenge from Voodoo to win by 2 1/2 lengths in the Grade I $300,000 Vosburgh Stakes at Belmont Park. ... Ivanavinalot won by 5 lengths in the $100,000 Brave Raj Stakes, and Super Frolic remained unbeaten by winning the $100,000 Foolish Pleasure Stakes, both at Calder in Miami. ... Keeneland sold 2,933 horses for $210,802,500 during the 12-day September Yearling Sale in Lexington, Ky. ... Essence of Dubai held off challenges from Walk in the Snow and A.P. Five Hundred and went on to a 3 1/2-length victory in the Grade II $500,000 Super Derby at Louisiana Downs. ... Kadabra set a track and national record for a mile in winning the $1,144,500 Canadian Trotting Classic at Mohawk Raceway in Campbellville, Ontario.

* * *

SKIING: Nordic combined skier and reigning American champion Bill Demong of Vermontville, N.Y., could miss the World Cup season while he recovers from a fractured skull.

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