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Archive for Monday, May 31, 2010

Busch races to Coca-Cola 600 title

Driver zips past lead cars in final laps to claim victory

May 31, 2010

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Concord, N.C. — Kurt Busch used a lightning-fast final pit stop to chase down the leaders and give team owner Roger Penske a coveted Memorial Day weekend victory.

That the win came in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and not at his beloved Indianapolis Motor Speedway, probably didn’t matter to Penske.

After all, it came at the expense of Chip Ganassi, Penske’s top rival in open-wheel racing and the winning car owner of the Indianapolis 500 earlier Sunday.

“Roger, this one is for you,” Busch said.

Busch and Ganassi driver Jamie McMurray were the class of the field at the end of NASCAR’s longest race of the season.

A late caution for a crash with 24 laps to go took it out of McMurray’s hands. He led most of the leaders down pit road, but was beat back onto the track by Busch and Matt Kenseth. Jeff Gordon was the first of three cars not to pit and restarted as the leader with 19 laps remaining. Busch blew past the three lead cars and steadily pulled away from the pack.

Tennis

Venus falls in French Open

Paris — So much for the thought that this might be the year Venus Williams would make a strong showing at the French Open.

So much for the thought that she and her younger sister, Serena, the tournament’s two top-seeded women, could deliver another all-Williams Grand Slam final.

Displaying little of the spark or strokes she regularly produces on grass and hard courts and playing little like someone with the tour’s best 2010 winning percentage, Williams stalled on the red clay of Roland Garros yet again Sunday, exiting in the fourth round with a 6-4, 6-3 loss to No. 19 Nadia Petrova.

Golf

Johnson tops at Colonial

Fort Worth, Texas — Zach Johnson now has a plaid jacket to go along with his green one.

Johnson shot a closing 6-under 64 Sunday in the final round of the Colonial, winning at Hogan’s Alley with a tournament-record score of 21-under 259. The 2007 Masters champion finished three strokes ahead of Brian Davis, who had a closing 68. Johnson drained a 14-foot birdie putt at the 17th hole to take a two-stroke lead.

Lehman edges 2 in playoff

Parker, Colo. — Tom Lehman won the 71st Senior PGA Championship on Sunday with a par on the first playoff hole, where Fred Couples and David Frost were done in by bad tee shots and double-bogeyed.

Eagle propels Donald

Madrid — Luke Donald’s late eagle helped secure a one-shot victory over Rhys Davies at the Madrid Masters on Sunday. Donald shot a final-round 5-under 67 to finish at 21-under 267.

Francella prevails in Brazil

Rio De Janeiro — Meaghan Francella won the LPGA Brasil Cup by defeating Mariajo Uribe in a six-hole, sudden-death playoff. Francella made a 10-foot birdie putt on the sixth extra hole, the par-3 17th.

Cycling

Basso returns to victory

Verona, Italy — Ivan Basso won the Giro d’Italia for the second time Sunday, capturing his first major title since returning from a two-year doping ban.

The Italian took the race lead after Friday’s epic mountain stage, stayed in front during another climbing leg Saturday and cruised to victory in the concluding individual time trial, which ended beside Verona’s ancient Arena.

Basso won his first Giro in 2006, then was suspended in 2007 for his involvement in the Spanish doping scandal Operation Puerto.

Big 12 Baseball

Walkoff lifts A&M to title

Oklahoma City — A two-run home run by Texas A&M’s Brodie Greene in the 10th inning gave the Aggies a 5-3 victory over Baylor in the Big 12 baseball tournament championship game Sunday.

Texas A&M (40-19-1) fought back from a three-run deficit to claim the victory over the Bears (34-22).

Baylor led, 3-0, after 71⁄2 innings, but the Aggies scored a run in the bottom of the eighth on a fielder’s choice, then two more in the ninth to tie the game, 3-all.

Tyler Naquin opened the rally in the ninth with a leadoff single to right, followed by Greene’s bunt single.

Joe Patterson singled home Naquin. Matt Juengel’s single scored Greene with the game-tying run. A fielder’s choice and double play ended that rally.

Greene’s two-out blast won the game in extra innings.

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