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NEWSWIRE

Andretti Finally Sees Another Checkered Flag

March 16, 1998|From Staff and Wire Reports

Michael Andretti, challenged to the end by by Greg Moore, ended 12 months of frustration by winning the Grand Prix of Miami at Homestead, Fla., Sunday.

"We feel more confident about the car than we did last year after we won here because it's more proven," said Andretti, whose previous victory also came in the season-opening race at the Metro-Dade Homestead Motorsports Complex.

Andretti, the leading active driver with 37 CART FedEx Championship Series victories, passed defending series champion Alex Zanardi for the lead 43 laps from the end of the 150-lap race. He stayed in front the rest of the way in the 225-mile event.

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Mike McLaughlin, getting a break when race leader Robert Pressley hit a backmarker with eight laps remaining, drove to victory in the BellSouth Mobility/Opryland 320 at Nashville Speedway USA.

Pressley got caught up behind the lapped cars of Mark Green and Ed Berrier as they entered the third turn, and clipped the rear of Green's Chevrolet. That started a mishap that also involved Berrier, Glenn Allen and Elliott Sadler.

McLaughlin, running right behind Pressley when the accident happened, darted to the inside and cruised to the fourth victory of his NASCAR Busch Series career in a race that finished under caution.

Winter Sports

Ids Postma of the Netherlands kept his world speedskating all-round title with a fourth-place finish in the decisive 10,000-meter race at Heerenveen, Netherlands.

Gunda Niemann of Germany won her seventh women's all-round world title, beating Claudia Pechstein, also of Germany, by more than five seconds in the closing 5,000-meter race.

Postma, the 1,000-meter gold medal winner at the Nagano Winter Olympics, won three of the four distances which made up the world championships on his home ice.

Norway gained a measure of revenge against Germany's Olympic champion biathlon team by easily winning the World Cup men's team title in a snowstorm at Hochfilzen, Austria.

Russia won the women's championship, with Norway second.

Norway used three of the men who helped it to a silver medal last month at Nagano--Egil Gjelland, Halvard Hanevold and Ole Einar Bjoerndalen--with Sylfest Glimsdal being the only newcomer. The team missed only two targets and had a winning time of 29 minutes 17.6 seconds.

Primoz Peterka of Slovenia won the World Cup ski jump at Holmenkollen, Norway with a .02 point margin over Bruno Rueteler of Switzerland.

Norwegian Bjarte Engen Vik, skiing before his hometown fans at Holmenkollen, outclassed Austria's Mario Stecher in the 15-kilometer cross-country race to clinch the World Cup nordic combined title.

Kari Traa of Norway overcame a wet snowstorm at Altenmarkt, Austria to win the final World Cup dual moguls contest of the season and clinch the women's title, while Jesper Roennbaeck of Sweden won the men's crown.

Traa defeated Jenny Eidolf of Sweden for her second consecutive dual win to clinch the title.

Johann Gregoire of France beat Roennbaeck in the men's final, but Roennbaeck took the duals crown.

For the second year in a row, Canada won the Nations Cup, symbolic of team supremacy, over the United States, which had won the previous 11 seasons.

Boxing

Edgar Ruiz (12-1-1, eight knockouts) and Giorbis Barthelemy (20-2-1, nine knockouts) will battle for the championship of a middleweight tournament at the Great Western Forum tonight. Each fighter has won twice to reach the finals.

Also on tonight's card, North American Boxing Organization featherweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez (22-1, 16 knockouts), will be seeking his 23rd consecutive victory when he fights Panama's Luis Samudio (9-3-1, four knockouts).

Marquez has been forced to sit out for nearly six months because of a hand injury.

Tennis

Magnus Gustafsson of Sweden came back after losing the first set to defeat David Prinosil of Germany 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 in the title match of the Copenhagen Open.

College Baseball

Freshman Jason Shroyer hit a home run leading off the eighth inning to break a tie and give Arizona a 12-10 victory over UCLA at Tucson.

The Wildcats (25-5, 7-5 Pac-10) had a 10-7 lead entering the eighth before UCLA (10-16, 5-9) tied the game on Eric Byrnes' second three-run homer of the afternoon.

Shroyer's first homer of the season came off Bruin reliever Matt Klein (0-1) and gave the win to Arizona reliever Ryan Moskau (4-1). Brett Nista hit two homers for UCLA, giving him seven this season.

Brad Ticehurst hit a two-run home run and made a leaping grab to prevent a two-run home run to help USC defeat Arizona State, 6-3, at USC's Dedeaux Field.

With USC ahead, 1-0, Ticehurst's blast over the right-field wall gave the Trojans a 3-0 lead in the second inning. Morgan Ensberg added an RBI double andJason Lane a one-run single to make it 5-0 after the third inning.

The Trojans (19-5, 7-2) swept the weekend's three-game series over the Sun Devils (16-10, 5-6).

College Basketball

Jeff Jones resigned as Virginia's coach after an 11-19 season, the most losses for the Cavaliers in 35 years. Jones had losing records in two of his last three seasons.

Jones' departure comes amid an NCAA investigation into possible recruiting violations, but the probe is not believed to have been a factor in his resignation.

Miscellany

Antonio Pinto, 32, of Portugal won the Lisbon Half-Marathon, setting a world record of 59 minutes, 43 seconds. He shaved four seconds off the previous world best for the 13.1-mile race, set by Kenyan Moses Tanui in 1993.

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