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Sports briefs

Compiled from Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published May 1, 2001


Latvia shuts out U.S. in hockey

Arturs Irbe shut out the United States 2-0 with some sparkling goaltending that kept Latvia's chances alive for a second-round berth in the World Hockey Championships in Cologne, Germany.

Irbe stopped 42 shots and Aleksandrs Semjonovs and Aleksandrs Kercs scored for Latvia, which lost its first game to Sweden 5-2.

USA, which opened the tournament with a 6-3 win over Ukraine, is also 1-1 going into the final preliminary-round game against Sweden on Wednesday.

Canada, Slovakia and Finland advanced to the qualifying (second) round by winning their second straight games.

The Lightning's Brad Richards scored for Canada.

BASKETBALL: The final two people involved in the Chris Porter agent case entered plea agreements in Opelika, Ala., concluding the saga that ended the Auburn All-American's college career. Nate Cebrun, a middleman for sports agents who served 30 days in jail because of his involvement in the free shopping spree at Foot Locker by Florida State football players in 1993, pleaded guilty to reduced charges of interfering with a lawful business and paid $7,500 in restitution to Auburn. He was given a one-year suspended jail sentence and ordered to serve two years of probation for the misdemeanor offense. The charges against Colleen Preiss, who sent two money orders totaling $2,500 to Porter, were dismissed. Cebrun and Preiss were forbidden from future dealings with Alabama student-athletes. ... Indiana forward Kirk Haston said he will enter the June 27 NBA draft, passing up his senior season. He has not hired an agent. ... Phoenix Mercury guard Dena Head, 30, retired after three seasons in the WNBA.

COLLEGES: As representatives of Carr Sports Associates begin a three-day interview process today to determine what South Florida staff, faculty, students and campus leaders want in an athletic director, the man many see as a potential front-runner said he remains unsure of his plans. Co-acting athletic director Lee Roy Selmon said Monday he has not made a decision as to whether he will apply for the job left vacant when Paul Griffin resigned March 9. Representatives from Car, a sports consulting firm, will be on campus through Thursday meeting with groups including coaches and athletic staff members to help build a profile of the ideal candidate. The firm is scheduled to make a visual presentation to USF president Judy Genshaft in mid-May and produce a final report in early June. ... The South Florida women's golf team has been selected to compete in the NCAA East Regional at May 10-12 in Chapel Hill, N.C. . ... Florida's men's golf team has signed a fifth golfer for the 2001-2002 season, Ari Savolainen from Helsinki, Finland. ... The visiting Florida State softball team beat Troy State 1-0.

CYCLING: Tailwind Sports, which owns and manages Lance Armstrong's pro team, has signed a three-year extension to keep the United States Postal Service as its title sponsor. HORSES: Dubai Millennium, winner of last year's Dubai World Cup, the world's richest race, died after an intestinal sickness at the age of 5.

SOCCER: The Tampa Bay Extreme and Tampa Bay Hawks, members of United Soccer Leagues, start their season Saturday. The Extreme women's team hosts the Texas Odyssey at 6 p.m. and the Hawks men's team faces the Cocoa Expos at 8 p.m. at the Countryside High School soccer stadium at State Road 580 and McMullen-Booth Road in Clearwater. For ticket information, call (727) 507-4625. ... Syria opened World Cup qualifying with a 12-0 rout of the Philippines in Damascus, and Oman beat visiting Laos 12-0 in the other match in Asia Group One. ... Chilean goalkeeper Roberto Rojas was allowed to return after receiving a life ban in 1989 for faking an injury during a World Cup qualifying game.

TENNIS: Juan Carlos Ferrero beat Carlos Moya 4-6, 7-5, 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 to win the Open Seat Godo in Barcelona, Spain. ... Andy Roddick won his first ATP title, the Verizon Tennis Challenge, by defeating Xavier Malisse 6-2, 6-4 in Atlanta. ... Juan Balcells and Alberto Martin beat South American opponents before heavy rain stopped play at the $500,000 Mallorca Open in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. ... Franco Squillari extended his perfect record at the BMW Open in Munich, Germany, ousting Goran Ivanisevic 6-3, 6-3 in the opening round.

-- Compiled from Times wires. Staff writer Antonya English contributed to this report.

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