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Ben Curtis leads Texas Open by three strokes

Despite shooting a one-over 73, he's in position to win his first PGA Tour event since 2006.

April 21, 2012|Staff and wire reports

Ben Curtis remained in position for his first PGA Tour victory since 2006 despite his first stumbles at the Texas Open, shooting a one-over 73 to take a three-stroke lead into the final round at San Antonio. Matt Every was second after a 73 in a bid for his first PGA Tour victory. Mayakoba winner John Huh (67), Seung-Yui Noh (68) and Charlie Wi (71) followed at four under.

David Frost and Michael Allen birdied nine of the first 13 holes and combined for a nine-under 63 for a share of the second-round lead with Tom Purtzer and Brad Bryant in the Legends of Golf at Savannah, Ga.

Bryant and Allen had a 65 to match Frost and Allen at 19 under at the Club at Savannah Harbor.

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At Koplei, Hawaii, Japan's Ai Miyazato won the Lotte Championship for her eighth career LPGA Tour title, birdieing three of the last six holes for a two-under 70 and a four-stroke victory over Meena Lee and Azahara Munoz.

Defending champion Lee Westwood birdied two of the first four holes to open a four-stroke lead at 13 under in the Indonesian Masters before lightning and rain halted the third round. Zaw Moe

ETC.

Serena gets a Fed Cup win

Serena Williams overpowered Ukrainian teenager Elina Svitolina, 6-2, 6-1, to give the United States a 2-0 lead in the Fed Cup playoff series at Kharkiv, Ukraine.

In the opening match, American Christina McHale defeated Lesia Tsurenko, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

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Seven-time defending champion Rafael Nadal will try to beat top-ranked Novak Djokovic for the first time in eight finals when they meet in the Monte Carlo Masters final on Sunday.

Nadal advanced to the final at Monaco with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Gilles Simon. Djokovic rallied from a set down to beat Tomas Berdych, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.

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Santa Anita ends its 72-day winter-spring meeting on Sunday with the running of the 13/4-mile San Juan Capistrano Handicap on the turf. Bourbon Bay, the 2010 race winner, is the likely favorite in a field of six that will be run in the ninth race on a 10-race card.

On Saturday, California Flag, an 8-year-old gelding who won the 2009 Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint, made an impressive 2012 debut, winning the $100,000 San Simeon Handicap at 61/2 furlongs on the turf under jockey Joe Talamo.

Capital Plan and jockey Brice Blanc won the Grade II, $150,000 Santa Barbara Handicap at 11/4 miles on the turf.

— Eric Sondheimer

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At Kansas City, Kan., 22-year-old James Buescher passed Brad Keselowski with 10 laps remaining Saturday at Kansas Speedway, and then pulled away to win for the first time in 76 tries in the NASCAR Trucks series. Timothy Peters also got around Keselowski down the stretch to finish second at Kansas Speedway. A.J. Allmendinger

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Two-time world champion Sebastian Vettel took pole position for the first time this season on Saturday, edging out McLaren's Lewis Hamilton at the Bahrain Grand Prix, where security remained tight in the city of Sakhir, amid expectations of freshanti-government protests.

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Senior outside hitter Tony Ciarelli had 12 kills and six aces as top-ranked USC defeated Cal State Northridge, 25-13, 25-15, 25-18 at the Galen Center in the quarterfinals of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation men's volleyball tournament.

Freshman setter Micah Christenson had 30 assists for the Trojans (23-4), who extended their winning streak to 18 with the victory over the Matadors (12-18).

— Gary Klein

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The 50-year tenure of UCLA men's volleyball Coach Al Scates came to an end Saturday night when the Bruins were beaten by UC Irvine in four sets in a quarterfinal match of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament.

Scates, 72, guided the Bruins to 19 NCAA championships and had an overall record of 1,239-290. He produced 33 Olympians and 78 All-Americans. He's the only volleyball coach to lead three teams to undefeated records in 1979, '82 and '84.

Scates announced that he would retire at the end of this season. Irvine won the match, 25-14, 23-25, 25-16, 25-23. Irvine is coached by John Speraw, who played for Scates at UCLA, became a Bruin assistant and could be a candidate to replace him.

— Eric Sondheimer

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Dwight Howard is making his first steps toward recovery from season-ending back surgery. The All-Star center for the Orlando Magic was scheduled to begin his post-operative walking program Saturday, one day after a herniated disk was repaired and some fragments removed during a procedure in Los Angeles.

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Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry and center Andrew Bogut will have arthroscopic ankle surgery in hopes of returning for the start of next season. The operations will be done Wednesday in Van Nuys.

Curry had surgery to repair a tendon in his right ankle last summer. He repeatedly sprained his troublesome ankle this season while playing only 26 games. Bogut broke his left ankle Jan. 25 against Houston before he was traded from Milwaukee.

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Akiko Suzuki finished second in the free skate and first overall in the women's program and Japan won the International Skating Union's World Team Trophy at Tokyo.

Ashley Wagner of the United States won the free skate with 122.29 points, but Japan held a solid eight-point lead after Daisuke Takahashi won the men's free skate on Friday and finished the competition with 55 points, two ahead of the U.S.

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