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Steve Lavin back at work after cancer surgery

The former UCLA basketball coach is eager to make a full-time return to coaching at St. John's.

November 08, 2011|Staff and wire reports
  • St. John's basketball Coach Steve Lavin attended his first team practice Tuesday since undergoing prostate cancer surgery. The former UCLA men's basketball coach says he's eager to return full-time to coaching the Red Storm.
St. John's basketball Coach Steve Lavin attended his first team practice… (Craig Ruttle / Associated…)

Steve Lavin attended St. John's basketball practice Tuesday, his first since undergoing prostate cancer surgery on Oct. 6.

Assistant coach Mike Dunlap has run the team in Lavin's absence. The Red Storm won their season opener on Monday, beating William & Mary 74-59 in the 2K Sports Classic benefiting Coaches vs. Cancer.

The school said there is no definite timetable for his full-time return.

This is Lavin's second season at St. John's. He led the Red Storm to a 21-12 record and their first NCAA tournament bid since 2002.

Only one player from last season's team returned but Lavin put together an impressive nine-man recruiting class. However, three of those players were ruled ineligible for the fall semester.

"I'm definitely feeling closer to full strength, and eager for a return to the sidelines," Lavin said. "I've been pleased with the progress made by our young team. During this period of recuperating, Coach Dunlap and the staff have worked in an impressive, collaborative manner to prepare our team for the challenges ahead."

Lavin has kept tabs on the Red Storm while he was away.

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Arizona Diamondbacks President and CEO Derrick Hall has undergone successful surgery to remove his prostate and doctors found that his cancer had not spread to other areas.

Hall became the Diamondbacks' president in September 2006 and added CEO to his title in January 2009. He previously worked for parts of 12 seasons in the Dodgers organization.

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Kenny Perry made nine birdies to lead the Champions Tour to the title over the LPGA and PGA teams at the Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge in Henderson, Nev.

The Champions Tour team, made up of Perry, Jay Haas and Mark Calcavecchia, were a combined 15 under in the two-player, best-ball format that allowed each team to discard one score per hole. The group shot eight under over the final nine holes to overtake the PGA Tour team of Boo Weekley, Gary Woodland and Jonathan Byrd, which finished at 12 under at the par-72 Rio Secco Golf Club.

Paula Creamer, Cristie Kerr and Natalie Gulbis of the LPGA Tour also topped the PGA Tour threesome by going 14 under.

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Nirra Fields of Santa Ana Mater Dei, one of the top girls' basketball players in the country, has committed to UCLA. She's a 5-foot-9 guard who played last season at Oak Hill in Virginia before moving to California. New Lakers Coach Mike Brown is her legal guardian.

UCLA is also scheduled to sign on Wednesday guard Kari Korver from Paramount and guard Lauren Holiday from North Hollywood Campbell Hall, the sister of NBA guard Jrue Holiday. USC is to sign Mater Dei guard Jordan Adams.

— Eric Sondheimer

Former Boston Red Sox manager Terry Francona has interviewed with the St. Louis Cardinals for their manager opening, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because no announcement was made.

Francona managed the Red Sox for eight seasons and left after they wasted a nine-game September lead in the AL wild-card race.

St. Louis is seeking a replacement for Tony La Russa, who retired two days after winning his second World Series in 16 seasons with the Cardinals.

More interviews are planned for Wednesday, believed to be with third base coach Jose Oquendo and Hall of Fame second baseman Ryne Sandberg, who managed the Phillies' Triple-A team last season.

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Texas Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux is next up as the Chicago Cubs search for a new manager. Maddux is slated to interview on Wednesday.

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The Boston Red Sox plan to interview Torey Lovullo and Gene Lamont for their managerial opening.

They team said Tuesday they will be interviewed this week along with Cleveland bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr., whose interview Wednesday was announced earlier.

Terry Francona left as manager two days after the regular season ended.

Lovullo, who will be interviewed Friday, managed the Red Sox Triple-A team at Pawtucket in 2010 and was first base coach this year for the Toronto Blue Jays.

Lamont, third base coach of the Detroit Tigers since 2006, had that job with Boston in 2001. He managed the Chicago White Sox from 1992-95 and Pittsburgh Pirates from 1997-2000.

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Americans Andy Roddick and John Isner advanced Tuesday at the Paris Masters.

Roddick defeated Julien Benneteau of France, 6-4, 6-4, making 12 unforced errors compared to 25 for his opponent. Isner relied on his strong serve to edge Stanislas Wawrinka, 6-7 (3), 7-5, 7-6 (5). He had 20 aces, including on match point.

Juan Monaco of Argentina cruised past Donald Young of the United States, 6-4, 6-2.

Tomas Berdych edged Fernando Verdasco, 6-3, 7-5.

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The Galaxy will play Toronto FC in an all-Major League Soccer pairing in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals, and the Seattle Sounders will meet Mexico's Santos Laguna.

Defending champion Monterrey was drawn to play Mexican rival Morelia, and Mexico's Pumas UNAM will play El Salvador's Isidro Metapan.

Toronto will play host to the Galaxy on a date to be determined between March 6 and 8, with the Galaxy hosting the return leg between March 13 and 15. Seattle, Morelia and Isidro Metapan will host first legs of the home-and-home, total-goals series.

The Galaxy-Toronto winner will plays the Seattle-Santos winner in the semifinals, and the Monterrey-Morelia winner will face the Pumas-Isidro Metapan winner.

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