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Big Brown gets repair of hoof

May 27, 2008|Pete Thomas | From Times Staff and Wire Reports

The trainer calls it a "hiccup" and Big Brown's owner is sure everything will be fine.

Twelve days before the Belmont Stakes, hoof specialist Ian McKinlay began repairing a quarter crack in the left front hoof of the Triple Crown hopeful .

He carved a little trench along the slight crack and stitched it up with stainless-steel wire Monday in New York. It was another step in a process requiring several days that would let Big Brown resume training as early as Wednesday for his attempt to become the first Triple Crown champion in 30 years.

"Just a little hiccup on the way over there, that's all it is," trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. said. "The time that he has missed means nothing to me or him."

Michael Iavarone, co-president of Big Brown's majority owner, IEAH Stables, also didn't sound worried.

"At this point, I'm very comfortable with us making the Belmont," Iavarone said. "If something goes wrong, I'll deal with it then. Right now, it's Rick's call. He's going to do what's best for the horse."

The injury is common and not serious. Healing can range from a few days to a few months, depending on the severity of the crack.

TENNIS

USC, UCLA win doubles crowns

Second-seeded Robert Farah and Kaes Van't Hof earned USC's first doubles title since 1989, and the top-seeded UCLA team of Tracy Lin and Riza Zalameda gained the sixth doubles title in Bruins history with their victory at the NCAA tournament finals at Tulsa, Okla.

Farah and Van't Hof won their 26th straight match in beating fourth-seeded Jonas Berg and Erling Tveit of Mississippi, 7-6 (10), 7-6 (6).

Lin and Zalameda won, 6-2, 4-6, 6-3, over Fresno State's second-seeded Melanie Gloria and Tinesta Rowe.

Taylor Dent, who had spent 2 1/2 years recovering from back surgery, was defeated, 6-3, 6-7 (3), 6-4, by Cecil Mamitt in the first round of the Countrywide Classic USTA Pro Challenger at the Home Depot Center.

MISCELLANY

Walsh, May-Treanor return with a title

Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor won their fourth AVP title of the season with a 21-14, 21-11 victory over Annett Davis and Jenny Johnson Jordan in Louisville, Ky., their first tournament since Walsh suffered a setback after shoulder surgery.

In the men's final, Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers defeated John Hyden and Brad Keenan, 22-20, 17-21, 15-13, to win their fifth title in five tries.

Syracuse won its 10th NCAA men's lacrosse championship at Foxborough, Mass., beating defending champion Johns Hopkins, 13-10, behind three goals from Dan Hardy.

The crowd of 48,970 was the largest to see an NCAA championship outdoors -- the Bowl Championship Series title game isn't an NCAA event.

Vijay Singh, who withdrew from a tournament in England last week because of a rib injury, pulled out of this week's Memorial for the same reason.

Mike Jarvis, the former basketball coach at St. John's and George Washington, is expected to take over today at Florida Atlantic.

Mammoth Mountain, which had been scheduled to close Monday, will extend its season by nearly a week, through Sunday, after a weekend storm delivered one foot of powder to the Eastern Sierra resort. Beginning today, Broadway Express, Facelift and Chair 23 will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mammoth is reporting a base depth of two to five feet.

- Pete Thomas

PASSINGS

Gonzalez, former Cubs pitcher, 33

Former pitcher Geremi Gonzalez, who won 11 games for the Chicago Cubs in 1997, was killed Sunday by a lightning strike in his native Venezuela. He was 33. Story, Section B.

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