Digest for 06-10-14


LOCAL

Jim Hill games rescheduled

Three of the remaining games in the Jim Hill Wood Bat Classic have been rescheduled for Wednesday.

In the 16-under division, Seabrook Relyance will take on Camden at 6 p.m. at Eddie Bryan Field on the Seabrook Family Christian Center campus. The winner will play Hamburg at 8 that evening on the same field.

At Taylor Field on Wednesday, Hamburg will play Nashville in the 19-under division at 7:30. The winner will take on Camden on a date to be determined later.

The remaining games were rained out Sunday.

STATE

Norwood resigns

LITTLE ROCK — Scott Norwood has announced his immediate resignation as head baseball coach at UALR to pursue other opportunities. Assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Chris Marx will serve as interim head coach while a national search begins immediately.

“I appreciate the opportunities that I have been given at UALR,” said Norwood. “I wish UALR success in the future.”

Norwood compiled a 148-178 record and led UALR to two Sun Belt Tournament appearances in six seasons as head coach of the Trojans. UALR is coming off a 2014 campaign that saw the team finish with a 25-29 overall record.

“I want to thank Scott for all of his efforts over the past six years and wish him the best in his future endeavors,” said UALR Director of Athletics Chris Peterson.

Norwood took the program to unprecedented heights in 2011, leading the team to its first-ever Sun Belt Tournament championship and NCAA Regional. The 2011 squad made history by becoming the first No. 8 seed in conference history to win the tournament title. The Trojans opened the tournament with a 4-2 win over top-seeded Troy in 10 innings before going on to top No. 2 seed FIU by a 7-6 final in the championship game.

Crane hangs on for St. Jude Classic

MEMPHIS — Ben Crane carded a 3-over 73 on Sunday, but still was able to hang on for a one-shot win at the St. Jude Classic.

Crane collected his fifth career win on the PGA Tour at 10-under-par 270.

“It’s been a battle this year,” said Crane. “I changed a lot of stuff and I didn’t think I’d get it back. This is a big surprise.”

Troy Merritt shot a 1-over 71 to finish in second place at 9-under 271, while Webb Simpson (66), Matt Every (70) and Carl Pettersson (69) shared third at minus-8.

Ian Poulter fired a 6-under 64 during his final round at the TPC at Southwind to finish in a tie for sixth place with Billy Horschel (70), James Hahn (67), Andrew Svoboda (70) and Brian Harman (72).

Crane held a three-stroke lead at 13-under when the third round was completed early Sunday, and Merritt cut that advantage to two when he followed an opening bogey with back-to-back birdies from inside 10 feet at the second and third.

NATIONAL

Nadal tops Djokovic

PARIS — Rafael Nadal captured his fifth straight French Open title with a four-set victory over Novak Djokovic on Sunday.

Nadal dropped the first set in the final, but bounced back and claimed a 3-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-4 triumph for his ninth title in the last 10 years on the famed red clay at Roland Garros.

Djokovic, meanwhile, failed for the second time to complete a career Grand Slam. He needs only the title in the French capital, but lost to Nadal in the final for the second time in three years.

Nadal has never lost in six meetings with Djokovic at the French Open, beating the Serb for the third straight year. In addition to the 2012 final, Nadal came away with a thrilling five-set victory in the semifinals last year, finishing that match with a 9-7 fifth set.

Djokovic, though, had beaten Nadal in each of the last four matchups, including a three-set win on clay in the Rome final just a few weeks ago.

After winning the first set Sunday, it appeared Djokovic just might continue that streak. However, Nadal always seems to find another gear in Paris. He improved to 66-1 all-time at the French Open, the lone loss coming against Robin Soderling in the fourth round of the 2009 tournament, and he became the first to win five straight French titles.

Nadal captured his 14th career Grand Slam title, tying him with Pete Sampras for second all-time and trailing only Roger Federer’s 17. He improved to 23-19 against Djokovic, including 4-3 in Grand Slam finals.