Kerr weathers illness, rain to win State Farm

June 15, 2010


— The flu didn’t get to Cristie Kerr during the week. The weather didn’t get to her over the weekend. And none of her competitors could stop her from collecting a second LPGA State Farm Classic championship Monday.

“It’s pretty amazing,” Kerr said. “An amazing, long week.”

Kerr held off late challenges by Anna Nordqvist and Na Yeon Choi at the rain-delayed tournament, shooting a 3-under 69 in the final round at Panther Creek Country Club to secure the first LPGA Tour victory by an American since Michelle Wie won the Lorena Ochoa Invitational in November.

Kerr, who also won the title in 2004, finished at 22-under 266, a shot ahead of Nordqvist and Choi. She was pumped to get the win.

“That definitely motivates me to be the top American and top player on tour,” said Kerr, who won $255,000 to move into the second on the money list $60,000 behind Ai Miyazato. “I’m just happy not to have to answer, ’Why are there no American winners anymore?’ “

Juli Inkster, second after a first-round 65 had her tied for second, shot 68-71 on the weekend to end in 35th.

Karrie Webb made her way into a tie for 11th with a final-round 65. Natalie Gulbis went 4 under in her closing round to finish tied for 36th, and Wie finished at 6 under, tied for 52nd.

Kerr led after third-round play was completed Sunday morning and would have been the champ if the fourth round had been washed out. But with more than half the round completed when heavy rains and lightning rolled in Sunday, tour officials decided to try to finish the tournament Monday.


At camp, Izzo mum on Cavs

East Lansing, Mich. — Tom Izzo wouldn’t even tell one of his young campers if he wants to coach the Cleveland Cavaliers or stay at Michigan State.

Izzo was at his basketball camp Monday when a boy tried to get the scoop, inquiring about the coach’s interest in jumping to the NBA.

“Bad question,” Izzo said. “Those guys up there want to know that.”

Cleveland wouldn’t mind an answer either.

But Izzo had nothing new to say Monday night, declining comment to two reporters waiting outside his office.

He’s trying to stay quiet publicly until he has decided whether to leave the place that has been his home since 1983 and jump to the NBA to perhaps make $6 million — doubling his salary — and possibly coaching one of the best basketball players in the world.

College football

Canadian team suspended

Waterloo, Ontario — The University of Waterloo suspended its football team for a year Monday because of a steroids scandal called the “most significant doping issue” in the history of Canadian university sports.

The school tested the entire team after receiver Nathan Zettler was arrested in the spring and charged with possession and trafficking of anabolic steroids.

Nine potential doping infractions were found among the 62 urine samples collected, the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport said — four admissions of use, three positive tests, one refused test.


Strosur tops Oudin in Aegon

Eastbourne, England — Australia’s Samantha Stosur, coming off a loss in the French Open final to Francesca Schiavone, defeated Melanie Oudin, 6-4, 6-4, Monday at the Aegon International.

Stosur eliminated an American opponent who last year beat Jelena Jankovic at Wimbledon to reach the fourth round as a qualifier.

Henin returns to grass with win

Den Bosch, Netherlands— Top-seeded Justine Henin made a successful return to grass after a three-year absence, beating Germany’s Angelique Kerber, 6-4, 6-2, in the first round of the Unicef Open on Monday.

Henin’s last match on the surface was a loss in the 2007 Wimbledon semifinals. She won at Den Bosch in 2001 and was the runner-up in 2003.


Dixon takes Top Fuel title

Englishtown, N.J. — Larry Dixon raced to his sixth Top Fuel victory of the season at the rain-delayed NHRA SuperNationals on Monday.

Bob Tasca, Mike Edwards and Michael Phillips also won their divisions in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series event at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park.


RadioShack miffed over snub

Schwarzenburg, Switzerland — Lance Armstrong’s RadioShack team complained of unfair treatment Monday after being refused an invitation to take part in the Spanish Vuelta.

The Vuelta organizers announced the 22 teams that will compete in this year’s race.

RadioShack was the most prominent absentee.

College athletics

Tubbs stepping down as Lamar AD

Beaumont, Texas — Lamar University athletic director Billy Tubbs is stepping down to become a special assistant and consultant to the school President.

Tubbs has spent 18 years as a player, assistant coach, head coach and faculty member at Lamar, including two stints as men’s basketball coach. The 75-year-old former Oklahoma and TCU coach has a career record of 641-340 over 31 years.


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